Monday, November 22, 2010

Delayed Reaction

The inevitable question:

How did an agency created to protect the public become the target of so much public scorn?

After nine years of funneling travelers into ever longer lines with orders to have shoes off, sippy cups empty and laptops out for inspection, the most surprising thing about increasingly heated frustration with the federal Transportation Security Administration may be that it took so long to boil over.

It’s simple: the TSA is now a branch of a government run by a Democrat.

Up until now, we were told that if we didn’t submit to shoes-off and no-fluids inspections, Osama bin Laden and his brown hordes would invade the airport. Now that the conservatives have suddenly discovered that their civil liberties are more important when there’s a Democrat in the White House — just like they discovered that the deficit was a huge problem only after the Bush administration and the people who got us there have left town — they’re using the TSA as a convenient opportunity to ramp up their outrage over the assault on their inalienable right to carry a cup of Starbucks coffee through the screening.

Yes, I do get it that the enhanced pat-downs are traumatic for people who have survived sexual assaults. I’m not minimizing them at all. In fact, what is more outrageous is that when people were being singled out for random searches before this latest surge of junk-touching, the wingers dismissed the concerns of the survivors as just whining and accusations of not being patriotic enough to put up with the invasion in the name of the War on Terra.