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  1. And furthermore….

    November 22, 2010 by Vicki

    I thought of some additional things I wanted to say about the TSA’s power-mad searches. They keep using the underwear bomber as the reason for these measures. Fine. But….

      1) the underwear bomber did not board a flight in the United States
      2) he paid cash for his ticket
      3) he had an English visa which should have been revoked but it fell through the cracks
      4) he bought his ticket at the last minute
      5) he had no luggage
      6) his own father tried to warn people but was ignored

    He’d have been caught if people had just done their jobs and noticed the red flags he was waving!!!!

    So don’t tell me everyone now has to go through these invasive procedures because of him. He’d have been stopped if anybody with a brain cell had been paying attention to his behavior.

  2. The TSA (aka the Totally Stupid Administration?)

    November 21, 2010 by Vicki

    So, the big thing in the news the past week or so has been the ever-increasing brouhaha over the new scanners that see through your clothes and take naked pictures of your body and the, now infamous, “enhanced” pat-downs which a large number of people consider nothing short of sexual assault. In fact, if anyone OTHER than the TSA did it, they would most likely be arrested!

    I’ve heard from several people that they’re okay with being felt up by a complete stranger since it keeps them “safe.” They’d rather have the pat-down than be blown to smithereens. So… if the government decides terrorists might be hiding explosives in body cavities (and you know which ones I mean), you’ll be okay with that kind of search too? You, your kids, your spouse? You say that’ll never happen? I bet you didn’t think a year ago, you’d be getting felt up by the TSA like this either. Have you heard about these incidents?

    That’s just a small sampling of abuses. As for the rude, insensitive clods in that first example? They need to be fired immediately. Though maybe public humiliation for them would be more appropriate. Then firing.

    I didn’t even get into the reported cases involving children. Rough pat-downs, strip searches. It’s disgusting and if anyone else did that to a child they’d be popped into prison so fast it would make their heads spin. Lest you think I’m exaggerating, just google “TSA” and “child” together. I hope you’ll be as appalled as I was.

    Here’s the thing…. from what I understand, the scanners don’t necessarily show plastics or even liquids. So, what’s the point in getting a virtual strip search? Plus there’s the radiation issue. Some scientists claim it’s perfectly safe, but others just as adamantly disagree. The machines are insanely expensive. Do you know why they’re being pushed? Back room deals by politicians. Former Homeland Security director Michael Chertoff pushed for getting the “porno scanners” as some call them when he was still the director. What no one seemed to know at the time was he apparently got a cut of the profit from the sale of them! I think that’s a conflict of interest.

    Consider this: Israel has lived with terrorism a lot longer than we have, and they have yet to resort to these invasive, humiliating procedures. Do you know what they do? They TALK TO PEOPLE. Their security people are college-educated, very well-trained (far, far better than our own TSA) and all former military from what I’ve heard. They’re also tested frequently and if they miss something, they are fired. IMMEDIATELY. Here? They get a slap on the wrist and sent back for more apparently useless training. Sure, what Israel does might be considered profiling, but you know what? I find that a lot less troubling than I did once upon a time. Back before our own government decided to treat us all, even children, like criminals.

    The terrorists don’t have to get on our planes now. They can just make threats and sit back and laugh at how we run around like chickens with our heads cut off. I’d say they’ve already won this round.

  3. The Separation of Church & State

    October 24, 2010 by Vicki

    “The Separation of Church and State.” We hear that phrase used on an almost daily basis. Especially when someone is offended by a Christian symbol, or prayers, in a place “they” deem inappropriate. Like government properties. Or public schools. However, to paraphrase Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride, I don’t think it means what you think it means.

    “But it’s in the Constitution,” you argue.

    Well…. I double-dog dare you to find it in the Constitution. Go ahead. Go look. Take your time. I’ll wait.

    So? Did you find it? No? Color me surprised.

    For those who don’t have time to look it up, here’s the amendment in question:

    • Amendment 1 – Freedom of Religion, Press, Expression.

      Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

    It says nothing about avoiding any mention of Christian symbols on government property. What it does say is the government can’t force you to join a religion. Nor can the government create a national religion.

    So where did the phrase come from? A letter written by Thomas Jefferson to the Danbury Baptists Association in 1802. They had written him, expressing concern the Constitution did not reach the state level. He wrote back to reassure them their religious freedom would be protected. He promised that no religious majority would be able to force out a State’s official church. The original text says, “…I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should ‘make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,’ thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.”

    See? It has nothing to do with the government not allowing religious symbols on government properties. It has nothing to do with prayer in school. So what do you say we quit having hissy fits if somebody deigns to erect a cross in front of a courthouse? You want to add a religious symbol from your religion? Go ahead! I don’t mind.