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City councilors move to ban porno scanners from NYC airports

By Daniel Tencer
Thursday, November 18, 2010 18:01 EDT
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Israeli ex-security chief: ‘I can overcome body scanners with enough explosives to bring down a 747′

‘Stop groping me!’: Retailers cash in on TSA furor

Four New York City councilors have proposed legislation that would ban the TSA’s full-body scanners from airports inside New York City, in a sign that lawmakers around the country are heeding calls from travelers outraged at the federal government’s intrusive new airport screenings.

If successful, the move could affect airport screenings at JFK, the country’s biggest airport for international flights, as well as the busy LaGuardia Airport.

“Just think about whats happening in our community. The next time you want to [fly] they want to force you to go through a machine that literally shows your naked body to a TSA employee. It’s an outrage, it’s unacceptable, it’s ineffectual,” city councilor David Greenfield told Yeshiva World News.

“It violates the privacy of everyone, including small children who go through these scans,” Greenfield told Wired.com. “Which is really outrageous when you think about that.”

Municipal politicians in New York City aren’t the only ones who are taking steps to fight the TSA’s new procedures. The New Jersey state legislature is considering a resolution calling on the TSA to stop using the body scanners. The Senate’s commerce committee held hearings on the matter earlier this week.

The city councilors pushing a New York-wide ban point to the example of Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport, considered to have the best airport security in the world, as proof that body scanners and intrusive pat-downs involving the touching of breasts and genitals aren’t needed to secure the skies.

“Everybody knows Ben Gurion airport in Israel is the most secure and the top terrorist target in the world. Their former head of security has said these naked body scanners do not work and that he himself could get through enough explosives to take down a jumbo jet.” Greenfield said.

He was referring to Rafi Sela, who told Canadian parliamentarians in April: “I don’t know why everybody is running to buy these expensive and useless machines. I can overcome the body scanners with enough explosives to bring down a Boeing 747.”

Greenfield says he believes city councilors have the authority to override the TSA even though it’s a federal agency. He points out that New York’s airports are on land owned by the city and leased to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

TSA ‘GROPINGS’ BECOME A MEME

With online news sites and cable news reporting heavily on the TSA scanners and intrusive pat-downs, and with the busiest weekend for air travel coming up, some entrepreneurs are hoping to cash in on the public anger.

Ohio-based StopGropingMe.com is selling T-shirts showing a hand in a clutching position crossed out by a red line, and the words “Stop groping me!” emblazoned across the front.

“We have created this site to encourage those who absolutely have to travel, to Opt Out of the scanners and still show disapproval to the new TSA groping methods,” a company representative said in an email.

The Web site features links to the National Opt-Out Day protest, which calls for travelers refuse the body scanner on Nov. 24, expected to be the busiest air travel day of the year.

The T-shirt sells for $21.95.

The following video, of New York City Councilor David Greenfield, was uploaded to the Web by Yeshiva World News.

 
 
 
 
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