I have been groped again by the TSA. In January of 2011, I was subjected to a humiliating groping at Logan Airport in Boston, where my rump was palpated by the assiduous minions of the TSA. Well, now it’s happened again. This time, before passing through the see-you-naked machine, I removed everything from my pockets except my boarding pass. That included my wallet.
After going through the machine, I was stopped by a uniformed officer, who promptly informed me that he was going to “pat down both legs from my knee to my upper thigh” (he meant “crotch,” of course). And so he did. Then he asked me to turn around, informing me that he was going to “pat down my buttocks with the back of his hand” (does using the back of the hand make it not a grope?). As I turned around, I could see my scan on the see-you-naked machine, which had a screen displayed to the officer. There were yellow rectangles on my legs and rump, obviously telling the guy where to pat me down.
Needless to say, they found nothing—I was as clean as my sister’s countertops. But that wasn’t enough. They then had to swab my hands for explosives, making me wait until the swab was analyzed by the sniffer machine.
Well, there’s nothing I can do about this kind of humiliation. I understand why passengers have to be screened, but how could the see-you-naked machine detect things that aren’t there? They need to either set the tuning lower, or abandon this ridiculous security theater. (They won’t do that, of course.) I am not reassured to see others having similar experiences; I’m just ticked off that they had to palpate my rump with the back of the hand.