For years we’ve pointed out the sheer insanity of the TSA’s security theater, which is intrusive, insulting and does little to actually make us any safer. One aspect (of many) that has been particularly troubling is the way that the TSA has basically enabled sexual assault of travelers. If you felt that wasn’t too bad, have no fear, the TSA is apparently increasing the sexual assaulty nature of these searches:

The new physical touching—for those selected to have a pat-down—will be be what the federal agency officially describes as a more “comprehensive” physical screening, according to a Transportation Security Administration spokesman.

Denver International Airport, for example, notified employees and flight crews on Thursday that the “more rigorous” searches “will be more thorough and may involve an officer making more intimate contact than before.”

Got that? I love the way they dance around the fact that this is randomly allowed sexual assault on people who just want to travel somewhere. But it’s described as “physical touching” that is more “comprehensive” and “may involve an officer making more intimate contact.”

So why are TSA agents allowed to get more gropey, just a year or so after it was discovered that some TSA agents were scheming specifically to be able to sexually assault travelers they found attractive? Well, it’s because it’s been revealed how useless TSA security theater is. Really. After yet another set of reports pointed out that all this security theater is useless, the TSA said “welp, the answer to that must be moar sexual assault!:

The change is partly a result of the agency’s study of a 2015 report that criticized aspects of TSA screening procedures. That audit, by the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General, drew headlines because airport officers had failed to detect handguns and other weapons.

This is madness. The answer to the TSA’s awful and useless security theater should never be to give TSA agents more power to sexually assault travelers with “more intimate contact.” This is not about security. This is about the TSA wanting to make it look like they’re doing something, and apparently that includes groping strangers who are just trying to get somewhere. How the hell does sexually assaulting travelers make anyone any safer?


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