TSA searching a baby – photo and discussion

Why not discuss the big issue, the recent photo circulating the web that shows TSA officials searching a baby after its stroller set off some alarms for explosives residue:

TSA calls it a screening and a modified pat down:

Our officers followed proper current screening procedures by screening the family after the alarm, who by the way were very cooperative and were on the way to their gate in no time. The child in the photo was simply receiving a modified pat-down.

I personally don’t see the problem. Or rather, I don’t see the alternative. Are you going to tell me that anyone under a certain age should never be searched? How do we decide which people are allowed to board planes without getting checked for weapons or bombs?

Should we say that victims of sex crimes should never be searched for weapons or explosives? See the comments on this not-so-old post about a former Miss USA.

If you want to argue that TSA is inefficient, I’m not going to argue. In fact I’m certain that the technology TSA uses is designed more to bring in revenue for the politicians’ areas than it is to keep us safe.

But if you want to say that we have no right to search people (all people) for explosives before they get on a plane, I’m going to have to disagree. I mean if you’re going to look for weapons and explosives, don’t you have to look at everyone? Otherwise the bad guys just put the bad stuff on the people they know won’t / can’t be searched.

Filed Under: Airlines + flying

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  1. Sharon says:

    I believe a pat down of the baby in this instance was called for since the stroller set off an alarm indicating some sort of problem. I don’t think we can set a certain age for TSA pat downs or screenings; however, it must not be offensive or traumatic for a small child. In this respect, the TSA employees must use discretion and professionalism in how they conduct the procedure. Rude, inappropriate touching should not be tolerated, regardless, and should be reported. It is true that TSA cannot determine the personal history of passengers, whether factual or not. Physical limitations, I believe, are a different matter and should be handled with courtesy and concern. But again, proper training of TSA employees is imperative,and their background check and personal history should be verified thoroughly before hiring.

  2. The problem is, they’re going to replace TSA pat-downs with lethal injections.

  3. Ker says:

    Interesting. assuming the stroller set off an alarm for explosives I think it was reasonable for the family to come under further scrutiny, despite the fact that the chances of an American family deciding to blow up an airplane by strapping explosives to their baby is statistically nil. In the picture, the Tsa agents appear to be smiling and making an effort to be non threatening to the baby. How far did this go? Was the baby disrobed? Was the diaper taken off? It doesn’t seem like this family was upset by the way they were treated.

    That doesn’t mean it would be reasonable to disrobe or give enhanced pat downs to babies or anyone else without cause.

    If I set off some kind of alarm, go ahead, pat me, feel my crotch, disrobe me if there is good cause. But no cause, just a matter of course? No.

  4. Heather says:

    Once the TSA is unionized expect to see it expand.

    They will be donating to Democrats compaigns. So we know Democrats will soon try to pass new laws to have the TSA screen us to get on trains, buses, escalators, elevators and bicycles!

    The more TSA workers, the more union dues and the more union dues the more money to donate to Democrats campaigns.

    They would put a TSA worker in your driveway to screen you getting in your own car if they thought they could!

  5. Lee says:

    The TSA is out of control. Where do they find these people? Who in God’s name are the managers? Where did these people learn common sence? More government BS. I cant name a single government agency that is efficient or does not waste money. Never once has the actions of TSA prevented a true terrorist incident on a plane. never once.

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