American Morning

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November 22nd, 2010
08:01 AM ET

Pats and scans here to stay despite uproar, TSA chief says

Wondering where you'll be patted down when you head to the airport for Thanksgiving this week?

With the busiest travel day of the year approaching, we address the uproar over the full-body scanners and aggressive pat-downs with TSA Administrator John Pistole.

Sunday afternoon, Pistole said in a Politico statement that the procedures would be "adapted as conditions warrant" to make them "as minimally invasive as possible."

This morning, AM asks Pistole, what can travelers expect this week before they fly, especially children, after a cell phone video revealed a shirtless boy receiving a pat-down hit the Web.

Filed under: Airline safety • Airlines • American Morning
soundoff (19 Responses)

    it will be a hassle process! can think about different options.

    November 25, 2010 at 10:34 pm |
  2. william donald

    i will not be humilated by these pat downs
    when Sen.Hillary Clinton stated she would not go through
    the tsa screening so i guess if you are in congress
    you are above the law,no one is above the law i dont care if you are a senator or president of the united states


    November 23, 2010 at 11:48 am |
  3. Paula Raeburn

    I am so tired of this. The "don't touch my junk" idiot videoed the process on purpose so he could get his 15 minutes of fame. Well the press has given him more than that. You created a story that most people would not have even cared about until the press made it a story. I'll concede that some people might have a legitable complaint but I would rather be safe than sorry.

    These people and their body scanner phobias are ridiculous. What's next? Privacy issues during surgery? "Oh, no. Too much of body is being seen.": I don't hear about complaints from other countries. Get over it America! Happy thanksgiving

    November 23, 2010 at 6:13 am |
  4. Burt

    @ T.S.A ceo. You mr. t.s.a ceo seem to have forgotten that the terrorist who flew those planes into those buildings on 911 (which was almost 11 years ago) didn't have a bomb on them. In fact, they went to pilot training schools right here in America. It is not my fault as an American that I shuold have to be subjected to this kind of treatment when the 99% of us traveling American's are NOT terrorist. Additionally, it's not the American people's fault that T.S.A and the Airlines got cought slipping and slacking in security prior to 911. It's sad, because Osama Ben Laden is winning the psychological war while people like you mr ceo are loosing the common scense war and all us decent American's have to suffer for it. I can assure you, if one of your T.S.A persons touch my private parts I will file law suit of violation of my civil rights!

    November 22, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  5. Conspiracy?

    There are those who believe that with the world population growing at unsustainable levels that this new TSA security screening is a plot to lower the sperm counts and possibly make male flyers infertile, so they can reduce the over population of so called undesirables. Its really a clever way of controlling over population, so that the powerful oligarchy elite can maintain control. I wonder if I am one of the targeted males?

    November 22, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  6. CrippledFlyer

    Im a person with a disability i have a prosthetic left foot, I have been getting thoroughly searched (patted down and swabbed) by the TSA since 9/11. Now that they have amped up their security measures, I can't help but take pleasure in seeing other flyers get the same treatment that i have received in the past. Unfortunately for me with the increased security i'll probably being receiving the rectal probe by the TSA. the next time i fly. It really is stupid to keep screening 99% of people with disabilities, i don't think one single terrorist attack has been done by a disabled person, but this is the United States and all that matters is being politically correct. Therefore sexually abuse all cripple flyers.

    November 22, 2010 at 4:31 pm |
  7. Sharon

    I am a frequent flier and do not object to anything that can help make the flying experience safer. Let us all not forget that the worst terrorist attack in US history occurred on DOMESTIC flights.
    If it wouldn't cause a scheduling nightmare, I would go along with having people who don't want to be scanned or patted down on one flight, and those of us who don't mind being thoroughly screened on another. Let's see how many discontented fliers choose to be screened then.
    As a frequent viewer of CNN, I would appreciate a little less fanning of the flames of discontent, and a more balanced view...perhaps even a way to help by encouraging people to remain calm and giving as much time to passengers who don't think that any of this is a big deal, as you do to the people who are offended and upset.

    November 22, 2010 at 2:33 pm |
  8. Bob

    42,000 people lost their lives to automobiles last year. 420,000+ since 9/11. And yet people are willing to throw The Constitution in the shredder for a false promise of "safety" from a threat that's so low relative to driving it's not even funny. Even the risk of getting cancer from the increased radiation of the “backscatter” nude-o-vision machines outweighs the risks from terrorists. And since these machines or “enhanced” feel-up searches cannot peer inside the body it's a simple matter to get around the machines. Contraband is moved around in prisons every day this way as a matter of course. It’s obvious that people are being herded into these machines based on nothing more than fear and hype. Meanwhile, 115 people lost their lives yesterday on the road, many on the way to the airport….

    November 22, 2010 at 2:30 pm |
  9. JoJo

    You sniveling idiots make me sick and when the entire Constitution is ripped from you, you'll have gotten EVERYTHING you deserve. You keep living your lives in fear, hoping to eliminate all risk. Don't drive, don't walk, never leave your houses again for fear that something bad might happen. Good grief, and to think people died for you.

    November 22, 2010 at 12:48 pm |
  10. peterg

    Anybody with common sense knows the next terrorist to try to blow up a plane is going to stick the bomb up his rectum. It could not be more obvious. The terrorist are going to sit back for a couple months, let us spend a whole bunch of money on machines, let the people hate the government even more than they already do, and then show us after all this BS we are no more safe flying than we were on 9/11. This is a total failure by a government that is completely packed with incompetent beurocrats.

    November 22, 2010 at 12:28 pm |
  11. Tom

    THANK YOU to TSA Administrator John Pistole for standing firm to protect us!! The fact that he has to defend himself like this is pathetic. Grow up Americans, get over yourselves and be prepared for the pat downs or scans or don't fly–period!! And CNN, if you think you're helping by making this such "breaking, top of the hour news" you're dead wrong! Finding the horror stories people have experienced when dealing with airport security is simply fueling a fire that shouldn't have been started in the first place!!

    November 22, 2010 at 11:02 am |
  12. Julie

    I just do not know. Fear taticss taken in this sudden checking of passengers that they may or may not be carrying explosives or other theatening devices? Would I subject myself to being scanned because of cancerous breakdown in tissue? Heavens no.I rarely get my teeth x-rayed or my children. If I refuse someone feeling me up for and alternative measure and refuse, They are fining them $11,000? Get real.
    Where is this money coming from to use these devices?

    I recieved this e-mail..
    These changes didn't take place because the searches prior to the body scanner machines and intrusive pat-downs weren't working: they were working extremely well. No, these changes happened because "the former Head of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff, had an ulterior motive in promoting the Airport security scanning machines that people are objecting to so strongly. The company that makes the machine is now one of Chertoff's clients but in the past under the Bush administration Chertoff was selling these machines to the government and to the Obama administration and they bought it hook, line and sinker...Michael Chertoff has been the leading promoter-sales pitch man for All body Scanners." (Politco)

    I think profiling would be a more economic way than to put our nations debt any deeper in deb and absolutly nutty way of checking out passengers.. I know I will not be flying anymore. Too much insanity going on, and Big brother is getting way too invasive.
    I love that people that grow back yard gardens can no longer sell their produce. Give me a break. How insane. Sounds as if the Bush administration continues the "fear tactics" invasion of a land only to steal their oil for 6 1/2 years due war appropriations are still in control of robbing Americans out of money.
    Hey any more Bin Laden tapes surface lately? Man that was on dialysis and dead, I heard, for ten or more years. Obama got suckered into another feature of nutsyyness.

    November 22, 2010 at 10:54 am |
  13. RLF

    I simply don’t understand the rationale behind these body scanners. The so-called shoe and underwear bombers were both on flights that originated overseas, not in the USA. Yet here we are scanning and frisking old ladies and children on purely domestic flights. What’s the point in scanning a middle aged woman flying from Dulles to Denver to attend a conference? Or a ten year old boy going to visit his grandparents in Seattle? We should be scanning USA bound passengers at Heathrow and de Gaulle, not Chicago or L.A.

    And then there is the matter of the correct technology. There are many excellent sniffer devices on the market that can detect minute trace amounts of explosives simply by testing the air coming off a person’s body and clothing. Why not install these at the boarding gates and check the passengers as they file by? It would be every bit as effective as x-rays and frisking. And perhaps more so, because it could detect explosive residue on a would-be terrorist’s hands. And lets face it, if a terrorist has gone to the trouble of inserting a bomb up his anal cavity, there’s no way anyone is ever going to detect that with a superficial scanner or a pat down.

    November 22, 2010 at 9:52 am |
  14. Weedstomper

    All the threats and attacks and attempted attacks are being made by the Islamic religion in the name of Allah but in the name of fairness to our attackers we all have to pay the price in order for our leaders to save face with the middle east it's time for our leaders to stand up for America also .

    November 22, 2010 at 8:44 am |
  15. Phyllis Olbrych

    Re: Pat Downs Have an EMT at every security check point to handle those with medical equipment etc. The agent that did your story;s pat down should be fired. They earn more money than most of them could earn in the private sector. Political Hacks?

    November 22, 2010 at 8:31 am |
  16. Average American

    If people don't want to get patted down at airports – don't fly. Very simple solution. Can't get any simpler than that. People want security as long as THEY don't have to go thru it.

    Maybe even get rid of all security and let people board the planes carrying whatever they want to.

    November 22, 2010 at 8:24 am |
  17. Bob in Florida

    As long as there is a threat, all means of protection need to be used. People opposed to the TSA screenings, are likely opposed to everything. They like being opposed.

    November 22, 2010 at 8:23 am |
  18. Scott

    If the full body scans are so detailed and take care of so much, then why do they still make people take their shoes off? Either these scans are not as good as they claim and are a waste of time, or they are as good as they claim and yet they continue to force people to take their shoes off as some part of "Security Theater", a show to say to everybody "Look what we're doing for security!"

    November 22, 2010 at 8:22 am |
  19. Muslim

    Why don't you investigate the AbdulMutallab case and see whether he was a dupe and fall guy, patsy. This is from eyewitnesses aboard the flight, Kurt and Lori Haskell: "THE SHARP DRESSED MAN WHO AIDED MUTALLAB ONTO FLIGHT 253 WAS A U.S. GOVERNMENT AGENT."

    November 22, 2010 at 8:13 am |