I went through airport security in Memphis a few hours ago. This is the first time I’ve flown in a few months. I opted out of the backscatter imaging machine and into the full-body “pat”down. I put “pat” in quotes because this wasn’t a patdown. It was an extremely thorough rubdown. An observation and a question:
1. I can see how this experience would bring back horrifying memories for someone who has been sexually abused. This involved a lot more than just incidental contact.
2. Who is the real public servant: the TSA screener with his hands in my pants, or the young lady behind the counter at Einstein Brothers? The former touched me in ways that would have been grounds for arrest in any other context.* The latter sold me coffee and a bagel. Who served me, a member of the public?
*-For my take on the “but the TSA agent keeps you safe while you travel,” please see some of the articles I’ve written for Forbes.com.