Body scanners

It's as bad as you feared: TSA employees are printing out, passing around and collectively guffawing at pictures of your X-ray boobs, butt and penis.

The organization and its employees are coming under increasing fire (sorry for the bad metaphor there) as more and more travelers are reporting problems with the new body scanners. The invasive machines were highly controversial from the moment they were announced, but until now, it seemed like underpaid employers were going to be looking at our naughty bits for eternity.

But in recent days, a new and surprisingly strong backlash has emerged, with various factions aiming to take down the free peepshows. An anonymous pilot complained he was not allowed to fly a plane because he asked for a pat-down instead of having to go through the body scanner. A woman "who, along with her child, was sexually assaulted by TSA staff after refusing to go through a naked body scanner" and an Indian film star claimed that TSA employees printed out an image that featured his very visible penis and circulated it for their own amusement.

Last night, Jalopnik ran the story of Libertarian activist Meg McClain, who claimed to have been verbally abused by TSA employees after she refused to let them use aggressive pat-down procedures on her. However, surveillance footage contradicts some of McClain's statements. (She also says a TSA employee ripped up her plane ticket, which the video neither confirms nor contradicts.)

Have you been through the revealing body scanners or have you been groped by TSA employees?

Commentarium (18 Comments)

Nov 12 10 - 11:54am

I'd rather have a pat down then get exposed to the radiation

Nov 12 10 - 12:03pm

TSA - thousands standing around. If you watch the video, you can see a male TSA employee at the :20-second mark check out a rather buxom female just leaving the counter. No word on whether he is the one that monitored the scan image, since the video doesn't start soon enough. It's really theater of the absurd if you ask me. Will anyone ask me? I' glad to hear pilots and others are now complaining, no matter the reasons. It's long overdue for a backlash against this stupidity.

Nov 12 10 - 1:50pm

Mall cops with too much authority. With Paul Blart Airport Cop at the controls you have to realize it's all for show... If they don't stop the bad guys days and months in advance, those goobers are supposed to??? Fuck me...

Nov 12 10 - 2:18pm

Furthermore, aren't images of naked children classified as child porn?

Nov 12 10 - 2:23pm

i will opt for a pat-down anytime, have had security personal tell me it is not an option and that i had to go through or i would not be allowed on the plane but stood firm and politely told them i know my rights and there is no way i will go through that thing, they can pat me down or even stripsearch me if they want to but i am not stepping through that thing. they promised us first they could not see anything on there, just a cartoonish figure but it turns out you can see evrything. they said they did not store the data but weall know now they do.. this thing turned into the biggest tsa scam ever and how many people got caught trying to bring anything bad on board sofar? none! the scanner does not work! why do you think a country like israel that actually knows about threats does not use it? they use the airblowing thinghy that does work and does not reveal anything or radiate anyone... it is a huge scam people!
oh and check out

Nov 12 10 - 6:31pm

I am pretty sure no one is interested in seeing me naked, and frankly I don't care one way or another, but if the stupid things don't work for their intended purpose, then there is no point in taking the risk of the additional radiation exposure. It's hard to understand why the can't program the machines to make organic matter invisible and only show the RPG 7 secreted in the terrorist's ass. It's pretty obvious that the software is using density information to make the clothes disappear, why not human flesh?

Nov 13 10 - 1:12am

Unfortunately, I've been subjected to the body imaging followed by an aggressive pat down more than once. How does that make sense? Shouldn't going through body imaging prevent you from having to be pat down? Lovely, just lovely.

Nov 15 10 - 6:46pm

I had a TSA agent in PHX touch my vagina area very aggressively. This is unacceptable!!! Let Janet Napaletano go through that search. Although she would probably like it because I hear that she is a lesbian

Nov 15 10 - 9:04pm

vah shut the fuck up.

Nov 16 10 - 11:35am

Obviously, DR enjoys having his penis, testicles and anal orifice gratuitously fondled in a loving way by an uneducated TSA employee.

Nov 16 10 - 2:27pm

vah is a man. just stirring the pot. also, it probably really sucks to pat down 99% of the traveling population- let the TSA employees do what they have to do so they won't get fired.

Nov 16 10 - 2:43pm

Of course, there's always the passive-agressive condescending TSA retort, "Well if you don't like it, you don't have to fly today". Er, what if you do have to fly today because your employer requires it?

Nov 16 10 - 9:30pm

I went through a body scanner at Manchester airport in the UK recently. There they let you see your own image, which is displayed facing away from everyone else, so you can be at ease about what they saw. I've also been frisked before, roughly enough to make me flinch at one point. On balance I would take the scanner, if it's not using X-rays (some use millimeter-wave radiation which is harmless).

Nov 17 10 - 4:10pm

TSA or Tyrants Squeezing Ass?

Imagine the fallout if a famous movie star’s naked airport scan was circulated or sold on the black market by a TSA employee. That might happen when you consider that TSA has been documented keeping thousands of naked scan photos of U.S. Citizens.

If not stopped, Airports are just the beginning of Citizens being X-rayed / Stripped Naked by Government, having their Private Body Parts Touched, Squeezed and Patted-Down by Government Employees. It is problematic Americans (next) will be X-Ray Scanned and Physically Molested boarding trains, cruse ships, buses; when entering sports events and office buildings. Continued Low Radiation Exposure is Accumulative and believed to cause Cancer.

Americans should boycott airlines; that would get TSA’s attention and stockholders of airlines. Meanwhile Not just pilots and flight attendants, “ordinary air passengers” should also be afforded privacy, when felt up, searched at public airports.

Talk about government in your face. Recently the Obama government purchased hundreds’ of X-Ray Vans that will travel our streets without warrants, x-raying Americans, seeing Citizens naked when walking, standing, riding their bike. Government/police will use the x-ray vans to peer though Citizens’ homes and vehicles, exposing Americans and their families to radiation. X-ray vans are an affront to privacy, allowing government to view Citizens in their bedrooms. Americans need to ask Obama if independent studies were conducted to determine if Citizens could develop Cancer, if (repeatedly exposed) to police X-rays. It is easy to imagine government/police with or without a warrant every night X-raying a person of interest in his or her home. It is foreseeable some Citizens might install similar to smoke detectors, sensors that will set off an alarm, if their home or vehicle is being bombarded with X-rays.

Obama’s X-Ray Vans can ALSO be used by the military or police to secure perimeters to control civil unrest and instances of revolt, to screen and stop Citizens carrying guns, cameras; any item. Does Obama expect Americans to revolt?

The Nazis used national emergency as a premise to repeatedly target and detain, search and question Germans boarding or taking trains considered political dissidents or morally unworthy; targeted Citizens were intentionally delayed by police/military so they would be late or miss work. Of course many lost there jobs and could not survive.

Nov 21 10 - 8:28pm

They MUST be made to CHANGE GLOVES for EACH Search!!!
The gloves are used on everyone without changing...who are they portecting---ONLY THEMSELVES!!!

Dec 14 10 - 7:57pm

i would rather let them see me naked than get blown out of the sky by a underwear bomber

Apr 15 11 - 9:38pm