When the American people sat on their hands out of fear when President George W. Bush signed the Patriot Act and federalized airport security, they only invited tyranny. Now, the Transportation Security Administration is about to become more tyrannical in its violation of the Fourth Amendment with a more “comprehensive” physical screening.
While few have noticed, U.S. airport security workers long had the option of using five different types of physical pat-downs at the screening line. Now those options have been eliminated and replaced with a single universal approach. This time, you will notice.
The new physical touching—for those selected to have a pat-down—will be what the federal agency officially describes as a more “comprehensive” physical screening, according to a Transportation Security Administration spokesman.
The change is partly a result of the agency’s study of a 2015 report that criticized aspects of TSA screening procedures. That audit, by the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General, drew headlines because airport officers had failed to detect handguns and other weapons. An additional change prompted by the report was the TSA’s decision to end its “managed inclusion” program, by which some everyday travelers were allowed to use PreCheck lanes to speed things up at peak times.
The new policy also applies to airline pilots and flight attendants, classified as “known crewmembers” who generally receive less scrutiny at checkpoints. The TSA conducts occasional random searches of these employees, and airlines this week inquired as to whether their employees would be subject to more frequent pat-downs.
Keep in mind, this is all a clear violation of the rights of the people that are protected under the Fourth Amendment, which reads:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
Some argue this keeps us safe and secure, but founding father Benjamin Franklin warned:
Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
Indeed, and America, out of fear, gave up her liberty to a usurping central government that calls this an “administrative” procedure and does not violate the Fourth Amendment. However, I have to ask, since no crime has been committed and since the TSA agents at the airport are agents of the central government, are they all not guilty of criminal actions against the people of the united States thousands of times a day by searching and even seizing their property without proper cause and without a warrant? I believe they are.
If you didn’t enjoy the pat down process and feeling violated as a result, and having your stuff rifled through by an agent of the government (because after all, he’s just doing his job), then you are definitely not going to like this. If President Donald Trump actually believes in liberty and freedom, as he proclaimed in his speech this week, I want to know if he is willing to reverse this. That would be in upholding the oath of office to the Constitution, which the Fourth Amendment is a part. I’m guessing not, since Homeland Security reports to him, and this is happening under his watch.
Article first appeared at The Washington Standard.