Another busy day—but still some things to ponder.
You’ll have heard the TSA forced a 95-year-old woman, on her way home to die among family, was forced to strip and to undergo humiliation far worse than that faced by prisoners at Abu Ghraib. (The lady wanted “to be with family members during the final stages of her battle with leukemia.”)
Sari Koshetz, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Security Administration in Miami, and a woman almost certainly in possession of a communications “degree” from some backwater university, said, “she could not comment on specific cases to protect the privacy of those involved.”
But she could manage to croak, “The TSA works with passengers to resolve any security alarms in a respectful and sensitive manner.” By which words we must assume that “respectful” means strip searching dying, wheelchair-bound, frail old ladies, not to mention rifling through their underwear, in this case forcing the old lady to remove and discard her soiled adult diaper, leaving her with nothing to wear as an undergarment.
Koshetz defended the agency that boldly pats down infants, nursing mothers, buxom blonds, and other would-be terrorists—how heroic!—and said, “the procedures are the same for everyone to ensure national security.”
That is false. There is no reason in the world to have searched and humiliated that gentle old lady. National security was not helped in any way. Not only that, security was actually harmed. To my knowledge, there has never been a terrorist meeting the dying lady’s description. By humiliating her in the name of “We were just following orders” is to allow those much more likely to cause harm to slip through security unimpeded.
It is time to disband, de-fund, and delegitimize this ridiculous agency before it is too late. Somehow, the immortal words of Benjamin Franklin can never be recalled by more than a minority.
Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
And that means you.
Update The daughter (Jean Webber) of the old lady who was de-diapered is on 710 AM (John Gambling show: 8:45 am, 28 June 2011). She said that as the TSA was giving her mother the third degree, she (the daughter) became distraught and began crying. This sent the noble TSA agents into a tizzy because the crying raised the “suspicious behavior” flag. This triggered a full alert: all of Webber’s materials were swabbed down, she was patted down, fully frisked, and hassled just as her mother was.
Even more amazing than a frightened public allowing a bureaucracy to grow and fester is that some of you still do not own summer hats. Sure, you can go down to the mall or to some big-box store and buy a short-brimmed hipster hat. Trouble is, that hat is a part of fad. It will look as ridiculous as bell-bottom jeans do now.
Step up and assert your manhood by owning a real hat, like those made by
Panama Hats Direct. I own two of these: both hand made, shaped to fit my bizarre, long-oval skull. I recommend the Havana style over the fedora. If you’re nervous about buying a finely weaved, soft-as-silk Fine Fino, opt for the Sub Fino as a test hat. It will look almost as good as the best, and can be retired to a stylish mowing-the-lawn hat when you upgrade.
Plus, if you click on the link and buy, I get a whopping 5% of the purchase price. I don’t ordinarily do these sorts of commercials, but I love their hats and I fairly weep thinking of the anti-hat backlash that awaits us when the nation wakes up and discovers hipster hats are ridiculous.
What’s funnier than a German joke? The world may never know. For example, this:
Herr Kallenbrecher: Listen, the patron calls the waiter and complains: This duck is only skin and bones! (Laughter)
Herr Kunz: And what does the waiter say?
Herr Kallenbrecher: He says, no problem, I can also bring you feathers! (Laughter)
Careful readers will have noted the indicators where one is expected to be mirthful, quite necessary, I’m sure you’ll agree, in case the translation to English has gone awry, as it appears to have done here.
This joke was culled from the site German Joke of the Day, whose owners say, “In Germany, we understand that humour is about telling jokes properly and efficiently.” No argument, there. The example joke is surely efficient, if nothing else.
I’d advise you to play along and at least smile. As Herr Kallenbrecher says (bottom of page), “Remember: We have ways to make you laugh!”