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TSA strips out strip-search X-ray technology

Airport security is a serious issue. So why, I have to ask, is the TSA being forced to compromise it like we’re all a bunch of immature teenagers embarrassed by the human body? As for why I have to ask this, well, read it and weep. From USA Today: “A new airport screening machine that peers through travelers’ clothing has been modified so [that it will] show only cartoon-like black-and-white outlines of each passenger’s [intimate body parts].”

That’s right, folks. We’re making compromises on a new kind of X-ray screening machine, which will be rolled out as part of a test at Phoenix’s Sky Harbor airport, because we’re shy. We, the traveling public (or at least the consumer and privacy groups that protect us), would rather have our “intimate areas” kept private than make sure plastic explosives are kept off airplanes.

Now don’t get me wrong, I can see the potential for abuse here. I understand the risk of some naughty airport screeners taking advantage of the technology for a little government-sponsored peep show. But is that really worse than the risk of international terrorism?

In my view (and, granted, I’m using specially modified X-ray vision, so I’m not seeing everything clearly), not so much.

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