Public Safety Trumps Comfort

by Allie Sivak ‘11

As we approach the busiest travel season of the year, some complain that the increased security at airports is far too intrusive. According to the Transport Security Association, “pat-downs are used to resolve alarms at the checkpoint, including those triggered by metal detectors.” Such hands-on precautions are aimed at preventing terrorist attacks. Travelers complain that security is basically feeling them up invasively. Furthermore, grandmothers and children, who generally don’t pose security threats, receive pat-downs. This is thought to simply make getting to Grandma’s house for Christmas an awkward hassle. However, Americans who whine about these measures must remember the devastation of 9/11. If we want to keep our soil safe by terrorists, we must take precautions necessary to ensure airplane security. An alarm-based pat-down system is simply more comprehensive than stereotyping suspicious individuals. Umar Farouk, last year’s attempted Underwear Bomber, displayed that terrorists are banking on slipping through security to execute their attacks. If we don’t lighten up and accept that we may have to endure slight discomfort or an extra wait in airport lines, we could be putting countless lives at risk.