Other voices: Bring on the body scans

Other voices: Bring on the body scans

There are 14 comments on the TwinCities.com story from Jan 5, 2010, titled Other voices: Bring on the body scans. In it, TwinCities.com reports that:

A terrorist nearly blew up a plane over the Detroit airport - one of the top stops for air travelers flying out of Dane County Regional Airport in Madison.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at TwinCities.com.

Gndydncr

Rochester, MN

#1 Jan 5, 2010
To insure greater anonymity, the person observing the images should be in a different building, a different floor, a different room than the scanning device - somewhere where the person being scanned cannot be seen by the image observer. In essence, the observer is in an isolation booth and sees nothing but constant gray male and female fuzzy shapes without making any observations or judgements regarding appearance or identity. A push of a button to light up an indicator on the scanner could alert security guards at the scanner to escort a suspicious person to a secure area for further examination. The story also alluded to the fact that technology should be able to be employed where the computer can detect which part of the image is skin and completely filter that out so that only suspicious objects are shown. Obviously, no recording of the images should be allowed.
Judge Roy Bean

Minneapolis, MN

#2 Jan 5, 2010
Body scans are all well and good, but still subject to human error. Dogs should be the first line of defense. If something doesn't pass their smell test, send the passenger on for the full scan.
Candace

Madison, WI

#3 Jan 5, 2010
Just a little side note for the uninformed:

Those vigorously pushing for the widespread rollout of body scanners in the aftermath of the highly suspicious Christmas Day bombing attempt have been found to have their own financial motives.
“Since the attempted bombing of a US airliner on Christmas Day, former Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff has given dozens of media interviews touting the need for the federal government to buy more full-body scanners for airports,” reports the Boston Globe.
“What he has made little mention of is that the Chertoff Group, his security consulting agency, includes a client that manufactures the machines. Chertoff disclosed the relationship on a CNN program Wednesday, in response to a question.”
Approaching the issue from a health angle, despite official assurances that the scanners are safe, there are many concerns about the physical impact of firing radiation at the body, especially if the individual has had previous x-ray scans, mammograms, or is a frequent flyer.
Dr. John Gofman, Professor Emeritus of Molecular and Cell Biology at University of California, Berkeley, maintains that there is no safe dose of ionizing radiation. Gofman argues that radiation from medical diagnostics and treatment is responsible for 50 per cent of cancers of 60 per cent of heart disease cases amongst Americans.

I would prefer to ration my exposure to radiation to only extremely necessary medical x-rays.
ex-hp

Saint Paul, MN

#4 Jan 5, 2010
How about banning all OUTSOURCING, especially overseas heavy maintenence...to me that's more of a security risk to US aircraft than some old lady with knitting needles.
Gndydncr

Rochester, MN

#5 Jan 5, 2010
ex-hp wrote:
How about banning all OUTSOURCING, especially overseas heavy maintenence...to me that's more of a security risk to US aircraft than some old lady with knitting needles.
I'm not sure that I understand what you mean but I'm pretty sure damaging US aircraft is not necessarily their goal. If it were, they could detonate their bomb over the ocean and destroy the aircraft and a few hundered people and be done with it. No, these terrorists are much more nefarious than that. They want to time it so that the aircraft is in a landing pattern over a large US city. The bomb needs to go off at an altitude where the downward and outward blast of the explosion can do the maximum damage. These people not only want to damage the aircraft but as much infrastructure of urban America as possible along with killing a few thousand if not millions of citizens on the ground as well as those in the aircraft. That is why the TSA is considering a ban on movement around the cabin and making sure all hands are visible within an hour of landing.

I'd be a little bit causious about a ban on outsourcing. Remember what goes around comes around and other countries might retaliate against the U.S. in like fashion. You may not be able to afford it. And as far as I know, for example, coffee is not grown in America and it seems that Americans run on coffee.
ex-hp

Minneapolis, MN

#6 Jan 5, 2010
Well, whats wrong with becoming a self -sufficient society like we used to be, instead of importing everything? Maybes it's time we start growing our own coffee, and start reopening our own textile mills and factories like we used to before WW2 and became a world power..this country has our own resources, I think it's time we start relying on ourselves.
Porkulus

Monroe, LA

#7 Jan 5, 2010
New Full Body Scanners Can't Detect Liquid Explosives Properly say Experts

http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx...



can’t pick up butt bombers either...

‘Butt bomb’ tactic spooks anal-ysts

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/international/it...

Boogie in your butt:



Janet Incompetano

Monroe, LA

#8 Jan 5, 2010
Considers Passengers One of 20 ‘Layers of Security’ to Stop Terrorist Attacks

http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/59262

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) cites passengers as one of 20 layers of security in place “to ensure the security of the traveling public,” according to a chart on its Web site.


----------

...and layer 19 is a cabbie with no English abilities,new to the country, with no GPS, trying to get you to the airport.
Tom

Duluth, MN

#9 Jan 5, 2010
The author needs to do better research. The current scanners in production utilize back scatter radiation. These are very low level x-rays that are used to "see" through clothing. As for their safety, I was taught in Radiation Safety class that scatter x-rays like the type being used are more dangerous because they more easily are stopped by the soft tissues due to their lower energy levels; this causes them to more readily interact with things that can cause mutation or cause cell death.
While one scan may not contain a great deal of radiation; modern radiation safety is based on a "non-threshold" model that basically says we don't know the level of radiation at which radiation damages tissues and that we should maintain radiation dosage to what is termed ALARA or As Low As Reasonably Achievable. Radiation exposure is also considered culmulative. How high of a dose will be attained by frequent fliers? What will happen when the terrorists figure out a way around the scanners? Lots of questions, not many answers from the government. To paraphrase Ben Franklin, those that give up liberty for a little safety, deserve neither. I guess I just won't be flying anymore...
Tom

Duluth, MN

#10 Jan 5, 2010
Who is going to make sure all of this happens? What are going to do when the suicide bomber is willing to place things within different body cavities to get past the scans? Will you be the first in line to have a cavity search in order to be safe?
Gndydncr wrote:
To insure greater anonymity, the person observing the images should be in a different building, a different floor, a different room than the scanning device - somewhere where the person being scanned cannot be seen by the image observer. In essence, the observer is in an isolation booth and sees nothing but constant gray male and female fuzzy shapes without making any observations or judgements regarding appearance or identity. A push of a button to light up an indicator on the scanner could alert security guards at the scanner to escort a suspicious person to a secure area for further examination. The story also alluded to the fact that technology should be able to be employed where the computer can detect which part of the image is skin and completely filter that out so that only suspicious objects are shown. Obviously, no recording of the images should be allowed.
Tom

Duluth, MN

#11 Jan 5, 2010
The problem is that even the highly trained dogs can only perform their job for a couple of hours at best before they get bored. I agree with you and trust the dog more than most TSA screeners.
Judge Roy Bean wrote:
Body scans are all well and good, but still subject to human error. Dogs should be the first line of defense. If something doesn't pass their smell test, send the passenger on for the full scan.
Gndydncr

Rochester, MN

#12 Jan 6, 2010
Tom wrote:
Who is going to make sure all of this happens? What are going to do when the suicide bomber is willing to place things within different body cavities to get past the scans? Will you be the first in line to have a cavity search in order to be safe?
<quoted text>
So what do you suggest?
Tom

Saint Paul, MN

#13 Jan 6, 2010
No one can guarantee your safety from all the bad things out there, so the first step is to stop acting like someone can save you from all the bad stuff going on.

The next step is to stop being dependent on the middle east for nearly all our energy needs. The only reason that we are even in the Middle East is because of oil/power. Once we stop meddling in the affairs of others who haven't asked for our help, the extremists won't have as much reason to make a statement. If they continue, then let the military do their job without all the handcuffs and take out the bad guys .

The hardest part for most people is to start using the facts in evidence and start looking for suicide bombers based on who has done them in the past. Why are we looking pulling out grandma from Boise, when all the foreign born terrorist acts that have occurred since the Munich Olympics have been causedby people from somewhere in the Middle East? Could the terrorists change their tactics, sure they could and probably will; but that doesn't mean that everyone else has to give up their freedom.
Justice

Madison, WI

#14 Jan 7, 2010
You make a lot of sense. Why aren't you working for Homeland Security? I have to fly every few months. This whole security thing is getting ridiculous. First and foremost why are we being allowed to carry on so much baggage. It should be personal items that can be scanned and nothing more. And yes the security for flights coming in from suspected terrorist countries should be ratcheted up. This ban on profiling is getting in the way of real security steps. I will be looking for airports without full body scanners for now and will have to change my method of travel when they are everywhere. When the airlines no longer have enough passengers to support them, then what. A government takeover of air transportation. People will no longer have the availability to move around as we do now. Control? maybe.

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