Airport security: Another reason not to fly

For those of you planning to travel the friendly skies over Thanksgiving, I suggest you show up two hours early and leave your rights at home. While the events of Sept. 11 have been described as an attack on freedom, this clich could be as aptly applied to our response. In the name of defending our country from future terrorist attacks, we have allowed the government to impose Draconian restrictions on air travel that do much more harm than good.

We want to say that we”re doing something that we”ve taken steps to ensure that this cannot happen again. But there is no reason to believe that the increased security already implemented in every American airport even curbs the instances of hijacked planes. Terrorists as motivated as these are bound to find a weakness in any system we can devise especially considering that most of the terrorists at the airports that day were not on the planes.

Rather than put an end to the threat of terrorist hijackings, the new security measures have only succeeded in making travelers uncomfortable and crippling the airline industry. Americans can not accept public searches, confiscations of their belongings, and other authoritarian security procedures for long. Every time a citizen is forced to watch security guards pick through their private belongings or suffer an invading pat-down, the level of discomfort with flying increases. Beyond the fate of the airline industry, our modern, global economy relies on swift air travel to continue trade. With fewer people willing to fly, is it any wonder that the national economy has taken a hit?

Rather than suffer through autocratic levels of security, we must accept a certain level of danger to be involved with flying. Despite the fact that driving is still statistically much more dangerous than flying, until airport security relaxes again, I am more than willing to take that risk and preserve my dignity as a citizen of a free State.

Seth Fisher

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