Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Caitlyn Jenner?

While the world was clicking on pictures of the July cover of Vanity Fair magazine to see pictures of the new born sexagenarian Jenner, I was obsessing over another story in the news. 
It seems that the TSA failed to stop 95% of the items that were smuggled through security at major airports.  Fortunately the guys attempting to smuggle the items aboard were on our side and working to improve the system.  However, 95% is a dismal failure at protection of the flying public.

How many heads are we allowed to carry on?

As anyone who reads this blog knows, I am not a fan of the TSA as an organization.  I have always thought they were rude, inconsiderate, minimum wage earners who assume all passengers are guilty before they walked barefooted though the metal detector. As much as I thought they could improve their "bedside manner", at least I thought the system was working.  

Now we find out that not only are they rude and ignorant, they are also incompetent and  ineffective as a deterrent.  So.... why are we putting up with this invasion into our rights if it is only 5% effective in keeping the traveling public safe?
My name sake Jeh Johnson, head of Homeland Security, vowed he would "get it fixed".  I hope he can. Although one would think that 14 years of draconian practice would have given us a better system by now.  How much longer do you need?  The reason I'm asking is I am flying coast to coast the end of the week, could you get the TSA success rate to a passing grade before then?
Here is the problem as I see it in airports across the country. There are three kinds of TSA agents employed to search us travelers. 

1) The tough guy rent-a-cop.  This is a person who can't make it into the police force for whatever reason so they decided they can be authoritative and a little bit of a bully at the Airport.
2) The Couch potato screener.  These are over weight humans who would be sitting at home watching a video screen anyway so why not get paid to do it. The show on the airport television is not as interesting, but then again they don't have to pay any attention.  
3) The Bored dropout. Being a TSA agent sounds better than "fry cook at Wendy's". As soon as they find any other job they will be gone and can't wait until that moment happens. 

Yeah I know that not all TSA agents fall in these categories.  I have even met some that seem responsible, polite and competent. But 95% failure to stop deadly items from getting on planes is unacceptable. That means it is not just the "staff" that is not working, the entire system is a failure. 

So could we please pay more attention to a TSA make over than an aging athlete's gender make over?The TSA directly affects the lives of thousands of people, while the "Jenner gender" affects only one. 
As you were,


Dan Christopher said...

Hopefully not to put this idea in the wrong people's minds but it seems to me that, based on this information and Jay's (and my) personal experiences with these people, a terrorist could simply follow a travelling ventriloquist through the security checkpoint. While the TSA agents you described are busy investigating that mysterious head on a stick image in your carry-on and deciding to give said ventriloquist the full body cavity search, the terrorist could probably waltz through with a Howitzer..

Pete Biro said...

you think vent's have a tough time, try going through with a large case of weird magician's props. I've had 'em take stuff out fiddle with it and practically ruin things stuffing them back into my case.

P. Grecian said...

By the time I'm on the airplane, the TSA people have worn me out and I'm SURE I must be a dangerous person.
And I worry that they'll arrest me because my toothbrush looks dangerous.
I'm thinking about just staying home for the rest of my life.