Friday, December 24, 2010

Women Feel Safer after a Rape Victim (a Woman) is Hurled to the Floor by TSA Agents

Sorry to bring a disgusting piece of news on the Christmas Eve, but Ms. Gwen Washington, a black woman, and Emily Protine, a white woman, felt a little safer seeing Ms. Claire Hirschkind handcuffed and being dragged 25 yards across the floor by the TSA agents at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

I'm almost completely losing any shread of hope that I still have for the country.

From KVUE in Austin, Texas:

Early Wednesday morning, a computer glitch shut down a security checkpoint for a couple of hours at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. The line snaked out the door as many travelers waited for more than an hour and some missed their flights. One of the first people in line after that shutdown never made it through. She was arrested and banned from the airport.

Claire Hirschkind, 56, who says she is a rape victim and who has a pacemaker-type device implanted in her chest, says her constitutional rights were violated. She says she never broke any laws. But the Transportation Security Administration disagrees.

Hirschkind said because of the device in her body, she was led to a female TSA employee and three Austin police officers. She says she was told she was going to be patted down.

"I turned to the police officer and said, 'I have given no due cause to give up my constitutional rights. You can wand me,'" and they said, 'No, you have to do this,'" she said.

Hirschkind agreed to the pat down, but on one condition.

"I told them, 'No, I'm not going to have my breasts felt,' and she said, 'Yes, you are,'" said Hirschkind.

When Hirschkind refused, she says that "the police actually pushed me to the floor, (and) handcuffed me. I was crying by then. They drug me 25 yards across the floor in front of the whole security."

... Other travelers KVUE talked to say they empathize with Hirschkind, but the law is the law.

"I understand her side of it, and their side as well, but it is for our protection so I have no problems with it," said Gwen Washington, who lives in Killeen.

"It's unfortunate that that happened and she didn't get to fly home, but it makes me feel a little safer," said Emily Protine.

Dragging a 56-year old woman across the floor, handcuffed, is for "our protection" that should make us "feel a little safer".

Get that? For our protection.

One minor point: I do not think it is "the law". If it is the law, when did Congress pass it? Congress didn't pass a law that says you have to be groped in order to board a plane. This is a "regulation" that suddenly appeared after the midterm election, concocted by the Department of Homeland Security under the direction from the Obama White House.


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