Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Don’t mess with Texas

Photo of Texas State Flag by Ray Bodden
The proverbial showdown at the OK Corral is about to go down in Texas. TSA and their invasive pat-down policy is about to be challenged per Texas House Bill 1937. On the defensive, John E. Murphy, United States Attorney has threatened to possibly shut down all flights from Texas. 

This is going to be interesting.

Texas State Representative David Simpson has posted the following on his website: “In a brazen show of disregard for the dignity and the constitutional rights of American citizens, the Department of Justice (DOJ) threatened on Tuesday to cancel flights from Texas airports if the Texas Legislature enacts HB 1937 into law.”
This house bill is co-sponsored by a Republican and a Democrat and has passed unanimously on the House floor and in the relevant Senate committee. It is now scheduled for a Senate floor vote.

His website goes on to say “Either Texas backs off and continues to let government employees fondle innocent women, children and men as a condition of travel, or the TSA will cancel Texas flights.  The Federal Government showed its willingness to bully the State of Texas if attempts to protect passengers from being forced to give up constitutional rights are not dropped.”

"Instead of threatening to shut down flights in Texas, why doesn’t the TSA just show us their statutory authority to grope or ogle our private parts?" asked Simpson.

"All that HB 1937 does is require that the TSA abide by the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution," Simpson continued.  "We aren’t even prohibiting the pat-downs, per se.  We’re just saying you can’t go straight to third base.  You have to have a reason-you have to have probable cause-before groping someone’s sexual organs."

The TSA tried to defend their position on their blog saying that only 898 people have complained out of 252 million people screened between November 2010 and March 2011.  It doesn’t seem like it’s working because they already have 936 comments (and counting) – most of them very “anti” TSA. Here are just a few:
·         If you're gonna plead the Supremacy Clause, then you have to abide by the enumerated powers. And you're not gonna wanna go there, cuz that would mean no federal role in aviation at all.
·         These are unreasonable searches and seizures and thank God for Texas. The TSA has never caught or stopped a ter'rist with these screenings.
·         It is no wonder the TSA has the distinction of being the most hated and despised agency in the United States with the IRS now in second.
·         Your propoganda is misleading... Just because people do not file complaints, it does not mean they are not there. I know a large number of people who refuse to fly at all because of your "screenings".

Place your bets. All eyes are on the OK corral and most are wishing Texas wins one for the rest of us.

More articles on TSA and their policies by Doug Bardwell:

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