Privacy Invasions of the TSA

My last post said that invasion of privacy “not only causes acute embarassment but it makes the person feel as if they have been stripped naked and humiliated.” This is precisely what the TSA’s airport procedures do. They invade every person’s privacy. They strip you naked in a machine, or else they invade your body and its most private parts. Emptying your pockets of personal belongings, having to remove your shoes, having to remove personal items of apparel, and having to explain personal matters such as metal implacements or other devices are all of the same ilk. All are humiliating invasions of privacy.The TSA is violating social rules of civility every day in every way on large numbers of people.

The government is replacing social rules of civility with social rules of incivility. It wants people to accept and be grateful for its humiliating treatment of them. Is it this easy to change social norms? I don’t know. If it succeeds, it changes the social personality of Americans in this society. I don’t even want to think about what the public schools are teaching about social and civic matters and what kind of social personality they are attempting to form.


2:12 pm on December 15, 2012