Fri, Apr 17, 2009
"I Want Planes To Be Safe As Possible, But This Is Going Too
Utah freshman Congressman Jason Chaffetz says his first-ever
bill will be to block the Transportation Security Administration
from replacing old-school airport metal detectors with full-body
"I want the planes to be as safe as possible, but this is just
going too far," he says. "The name of safety is overtaking personal
privacy and I think that's wrong."
The Salt Lake Tribune reports the bill, which Chaffetz hopes to
introduce in the next week or two, would force TSA to keep the
current option for passengers to be frisked by a screener, if they
prefer not to have the full-body scan. The Salt Lake City
International Airport (SLC) is one of TSA's test locations, and the
agency reports the new scanners are being well received.
As for the idea that the machines invade privacy, local TSA
spokesman Dwayne Baird said little, citing an upcoming meeting with
Chaffetz to discuss his concerns, but added, "We don't look at it
as an intrusion per se."
As for TSA claims that the machines do not reveal private
anatomical details, Chaffetz says agents have told him they can
tell how much change is in a passenger's pockets. "If you have that
kind of specificity, you can see everything."
In statements to local media, Chaffetz has also called the
images displayed by the machines "TSA porn."
Chaffetz also expressed concern for the effect of screening the
images on screeners. "I don't think we should be subjecting TSA
employees to sitting around looking at naked bodies all day," he
said. "There's got to be a point where you say, 'We've gone too
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