Supposedly, the scanners are "low-level" radiation scans – however, they scan the entire body from head to toe. This makes your total exposure a lot higher than when compared against say a chest x-ray – and even chest x-rays are limited in the number you are recommended to have in a years time. TSA claims that a single scan is like exposure to a 2 hour walk in the sun. But there does not seem to be anyone who can or will back up that claim, at least not anyone who is reputable in the radiation field, just their own TSA hype.
Currently, there is NO REQUIREMENT at all for any of these scanners to be certified by a radiation specialist. You might want to ask yourself just why that is.
EVERY OTHER x-ray or radiation unit, whether in a hospital, dentist office, clinic, or other is required to undergo periodic examination and certification. This is done to ensure that you do not have a higher exposure to radiation than needed by a faulty machine. Make no mistake, a misalign x-ray unit could potentially give you a fatal dose of radiation in a worst cast scenario.
How then can these scanners be exempted from what has been standard practice since the beginning of x-ray usage? You might want to ask your Senator and Congressman just why that is – oh, but they may not be too concerned, after all THEY don’t have to go through the scanners at all and many other "officials" don’t have to either – it is just us, the general public, that need to take the risk.
The whole point of this is that even if the scanner is calibrated correctly, even if you only travel a little and are not a frequent flyer, even if you think you will be ok and it is not harmful – the actual truth is that YES it is HARMFUL to you with any exposure.
X-rays damage the skin, the cells, and even DNA. Now the TSA says that the levels are so low that there is no danger. And of course you are going to take their word for that aren’t you.
Remember you are being scanned over your entire body – a very large area with a lot of radiation going into and on your body. Each time you are exposed to one of these scans, you are damaging your body and especially your immune system. Even those who fly only once are receiving more radiation than they might like depending on the individual. Frequent flyers are potentially causing major accumulating damage and leaving themselves open to other not so nice pathogens that will take advantage with a weaken immune system.
One major player is MRSA which can be found on the skin of most of us all the time waiting to encounter any opening into the body through a cut or scratch or even just a scrape you do not even notice happened.
So on top of the radiation exposure issue, you have the potential of serious infection because you are weakening your immune system with each scan and opening yourself up to whatever you encounter.
And in case you are thinking the radiation will damage the MRSA or other nasty bug, sorry but they are a lot tougher than that and happily pass right through the scan.
Ok, now you understand the problem with the scanners. But what really makes this a journey into never, never land is the simple fact that the scanners have already proven to be worthless in detecting dangerous items.
The scanner is only as good as the person who is looking at the image and making a determination. Since the TSA seems bent on hiring only those who have little moral fiber or brain power, the effectiveness of the scans will remain little to none. I mean would YOU do this job or want to? I would not under any circumstances. I have no desire to see all those people without clothes, would never, ever want to "pat down" any of them especially in the private areas, and would never wish to make anyone feel pressured, intimidated, humiliated, or uncomfortable in any way. TSA agents, far too many of them, seem to delight in doing all of the above and like it.
Hmmm, not a big shock since a lot of convicted felons, people with mental difficulties, and even those with actual sexual offences are being hired by the TSA – and yes they are. Makes a certain kind of logic since a decent person would not want to do the job in the way TSA is making their agents act. So the answer is to go out and find a lot of scumbags and get the job done. Only they are forgetting to tell them that they are being constantly exposed to the radiation – anyone want to guess what the long term effects might be for the TSA agents?
You do realize that we, the taxpayers, are paying for all of these machines and agents – or did you think that this was a private venture? Nope, it is coming right out of everyone’s pocket and hey no one asked me if I wanted to pay for this — did they ask you? And let me tell you that these are really expensive units!
Ok, maybe, IF these scanners worked really, really well then they might have some application, BUT the fact is they are virtually worthless.
And this is not the only example by far.
At the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, an undercover agent successfully smuggled a handgun through the naked body scanner – and she did in not one time but several times!
The undercover agent also reported that none of the TSA agents that preformed her screenings were at all disciplined for their non-observances of her hidden weapon. Every agent involved in the instances are still operating the scanners just as they did prior to the test.
Say what? So, the TSA agents demonstrate a total lack of skill in doing their only function of stopping any sort of dangerous item from making it onto the aircraft. Yet they are not reprimanded, they are not given extra training to correct the problem, they are not even looked at in any manner, and are not fired and still on the job. In my option, they should have all been fired.
What does this say about the TSA in general, the effectiveness of any of the scans, the subjecting of the travelers to various degrees of humiliation and intimidation during this whole process? Just what is the point if it was that easy to pass the screening?
When asked about this incident by NBC, TSA offered a stock response where “for security reasons we do not publicize or comment on the outcome of covert tests” and that the “naked body scanners are an effective tool”. Well they are certainly effective in wasting the taxpayer dollar!
No wonder they don’t disclose the results of security tests. I would challenge the TSA to produce ANY security test that they actually passed. Do you have even one that you can show the public? Every case that I am aware of that has been reported by numerous security people has been a dismal failure.
There was the incident late last year where the TSA failed to identify a loaded pistol in a passenger briefcase. And there are many more – do a search and see for yourself.
If the scanners are potentially a threat to our health as many expertis are now stating, if they are only as good as the people running them and the TSA insists on hiring only the most unqualified personal for the jobs, if repeated tests of the security FAIL over and over again – they why on earth do we have these monstrosities around in the first place!
Why is the administration going to spend even more of our money (which is in very short supply at least in my household) to the tune of another 440 million dollars for addition units?
Why, if security is of such concern, then how about putting in dogs to sniff at everyone and the luggage? They are far better at the job, are not going to be much of a problem with the people, and are so much less costly than the scanners.
Any reason why that was not done TSA? Or is it because the entire purpose of all of this has nothing to do with security but has everything to do with seeing just what the public will tolerate, how well the government can already control the public, and how far down the primrose path we have already traveled to a totalitarian state similar to the one Hitler developed during world war II in Germany.
I urge you to think long and hard about all of this. It just may be the tip of the iceberg in what is being planned and ask yourself if this is the kind of America that you want your children to grow up in! Only you can make that decision.