Pat downs

TSA Is a 'Charade'

Aviation expert Clive Irving acknowledges that airline passengers are right to feel their privacy is being invaded by new airport-security procedures, but, he says, they might have to deal with it. “If there is a bomb in somebody’s crotch somebody has to find it,” he writes. However, he believes airport screening is mostly misguided. Terrorists wouldn’t be boarding planes in the U.S., he writes; the underpants bomber, for example, “had found weak points elsewhere (Nigeria, the Netherlands) to exploit.” Rather than the TSA “charade,” Irving says, Americans “need sophisticated extrapolation from the data bases to create three distinct groups: Those who pose no threat at all (most of us); those you need to know more about; and those who are without doubt wishing us ill.” But “right now, we are just too dumb to make those distinctions, more than nine years after it was required of us.”