This article describes the appalling way that even elderly people with medical conditions are treated by the TSA at airports. Here are a few examples, starting with happened to an 82-year old woman at the Pheonex airport.
The metal detector beeps over her chest. She explains she has a prosthesis. She’d opted out of reconstructive surgery after the breast cancer.
Transportation Security Administration agents take the woman to a room and order her to take off her blouse. Then her bra. Then her prosthesis, which they examine. The elderly woman strips to her waist, with nothing to hide her scars.
One woman wrote that an agent ordered a pat down of her prosthetic breast and refused to conduct the search in private, before a flight in May 2012.
“She made me pull it out in front of the world. When I got upset I was told to shut up. I have never been so humiliated in my life,” the woman wrote. “The TSA has overstepped their bounds and ruined my vacation.”
A woman on a layover in January says she was in a wheelchair with an oxygen tank and was transferring planes when agents drew their guns on her and called her a terrorist. Agents accused her of smuggling contraband. When she returned home, all of her prescribed pain pills had been confiscated, she reported.
A 92-year-old man with childhood polio was ordered out of his wheelchair to stand up in the body-scanning machine. His grandson reported overhearing one TSA screener shout: “Find out if he has his knees and hips. If he does, then there is no reason he can’t stand.”
Between the TSA and the Customs and Border Protection agency and the Border Patrol, the government is doing a fine job of alienating people. It is almost as if they go out of their way to get a bad name for the security system.
The grandchild of the woman with the prosthesis hit the nail on the head with her complaint: “This sort of degrading treatment is more appropriate for prisoners.” Yes, the great success of groups like al Qaeda is that we now are all treated as if we are terrorists.