Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Throwing Shoes at Grandma

Throw a shoe at Grandma today!

Yes, that's the crazy idea that was presented in today's Kansas City Star by a local columnist, who espouses that in protest of the protesters who are protesting TSA's new security procedures, (follow that??!), travelers should just toss a shoe at the back of the heads of the people who opt-out of the body scanners.

Because, after all, the protesters are being "silly" and "selfish", in his words.

Unfortunately, there are people at the airports today who will be opting out of the body scanners for other reasons - including medical reasons - and I just can't see how a shoe to the back of their head proves a point.

There are lots of people who have metal in their bodies - from knee replacements, broken bones, etc - who are unable to go through the scanners. They have to opt-out and receive the pat-down. Now, they'll get a shoe in their head besides the metal rod in their leg, thanks to today's columnist.

As I pointed out to the guy in an email I sent him, after having received a diagnosis of skin cancer - not once now, but TWICE - I have been advised to not go through a radiation-emitting body scanner by my physician. My doctor said, "Take the pat-down instead. It's invasive, yes - but it won't lead to future skin cancer diagnoses at this time."

Am I comfortable with the pat-down? Hell, no. But, I will grin and bear it and get through it, knowing that the alternative could be deadly down the road.

And when I get clunked in the head by a shoe, thrown by a disgruntled traveler behind me, I will explain to my children that someone behind me is exercising their free speech...although I wish they wouldn't be making assumptions about people opting out. Assumptions are usually wrong, and in this case, it is. I'm not being "silly" and "selfish".

I'm being safe.



1 comment:

LDswims said...

Great blog and great attitude.

I wish I'd had the foresight when I was pregnant. I didn't, somehow, even realize what I was walking through at the time. The scanners were just starting to appear in airports and I thought the podunk airport I was in was not going to be the first on the list to get body scanners. And there I was walking through a radiation emitting scanner at 5 weeks pregnant. Now I'll always wonder if that had anything to do with having a miscarriage. Probably not...but it's still a question in the back of my head.

People need to chill out about this. It sucks and it's ridiculous - but the TSA agents don't want to be patting us down as much as we don't want to be pat down. But sometimes it is what it is.

So you are right, be safe!