TSA, in essence, steels this person’s property and follows up with a trite post making light of it. TSA posted a photo on their Instagram account captioned in part with this, “Why does this gigantic teddy bear look so sad? He was abandoned by his owners at LAX after the airline and TSA determined that he was just too big to be screened as a carry-on and taken on the plane.” Maybe a midget terrorist was hiding inside primed to jump out at just the right moment? The reason they give is that it was too large to fit through the x-ray machine. Maybe, but that does seem hard to believe. I’ve seen this bear in the stores and while it’s huge I’ve seen men that size and the machines are also very large. I’m only guessing but they probably just didn’t want to do it.
While TSA’s post reads that the owner “abandoned” the bear let’s be honest about this, the owner didn’t really have much of a choice did they? Not any good choices. They could have missed their flight and gone to mail the bear home instead or maybe emptied out a large suitcase and stuffed him inside and checked it with the rest of the baggage and maybe stuffed the contents of the…no…never mind, I can’t even come up with some good solution sitting here working hard as I can for alternatives. Someone about to miss a flight certainly couldn’t. They were really FORCED by TSA to leave it behind.
Some people may say “it’s only a teddy bear” as if the type of private property they were forced to abandoned somehow justifies the government overreach. Neither the type nor cost of the property gives the government authority. As I think about it I wonder what really does? The airlines are privately owned and operated but citizens can’t use their services without passing through a government check point. While a business has the right to do this as part of its service what gives the government that right? Seizure of property and searches should be protected as specified in the 4th amendment to the US Constitution.
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
There was no probable cause, no warrant. On top of that they were deprived on property without receiving just compensation which the Constitution also prohibits, “…nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law; nor be obliged to relinquish his property, where it may be necessary for public use, without a just compensation.”. Certainly one can argue that the bear wasn’t taken for public use but if they argue that TSA is required to protect the public and the bear was a violation of that protection then it was only for public use that it was taken.
Then there is the absolute fact that TSA does not prevent terrorist attacks or make us safer. The video below does a great job explaining why this is the case. If you have ever been groped by the TSA it’s a traumatic experience, one that no American should have to go through without the above mentioned due process of law. In as much as our law makers have created this beast it’s up to them to dismantle it. But they won’t unless they hear from their constituents. Therein lies the problem, while a poll found that 87% of frequent fliers are dissatisfied with the TSA another poll found that only “…57% of adult fliers were bothered or angered by security pat-downs, while 42% felt that way about full-body scans.” meaning that not even a majority of people objected to scans and a scant majority object to pat-downs.
If law makers got calls, or if airlines didn’t make money, something would change. Yet as long as so few people object and many blindly support this useless exercise that objectively does not make us safer but does reduce our freedom to move about the country nothing will change.
This is all for show. More Air Marshalls and greater public awareness of terrorism are all that’s needed to thwart another attack. No need to scan us, grope us, or take our teddy bears.
Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents in Los Angeles just confiscated a gigantic teddy bear and posted a photo of the poor guy on Instagram. And if that wasn’t enough, they gave him a depressing backstory. The TSA’s social media accounts really are a fantastic way to keep up to date on how the agency is ruining Christmas this holiday season.