Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Come Fly With Us

There's been a lot of news about airport security recently.  You see, the airlines here in America upgraded their security in response to a terrorist threat, and...no, wait, they upgraded their security in response to absolutely nothing.

Now everyone has to go through Super Security, which involves going through the machine that sees through clothing and having TSA agents touch you everywhere, including the certain private parts that are, ahem, in the "no-fly zone".

Needless to say, everyone is very upset that airports are taking nude pictures and feeling people up.

The local airport at San Jose recently underwent a ten-year reconstruction project, and to celebrate the "new" airport, they set up a mural of people's hands on the side of a five-story building.  It's really creepy to drive by and see humongous hands all over the building.  It reminds me of a horror movie, where all these hands started popping out of the ground and...*shudder*.

The hands are supposed to represent the different people of the community, who work together in mutual love and trust.  But now that the airport officials have begun touching people in inappropriate places, the hands have taken on a very different meaning.

My favorite part in this whole airline security drama has been watching the US Congress do nothing about the situation, while pretending they are, in fact, doing something.  For example, I read a news report on Defense Secretary Hilary Clinton, who made an official statement, pledging that she will do everything in her power to protect people's privacy and uphold their basic human dignity.  Ha ha, I am joking, of course.  What really happened is that Hilary made some compassionate remarks about how she "understands" why people are upset.  However, she will not change anything because traumatizing innocent citizens helps protect our country, by jingo.

The report ended with an interesting fun fact: she doesn't have to go through the new airport security.  It's very comforting to know our leaders approve of the new security measures...but they don't approve of them enough to actually undergo them.

Now, personally, I didn't like airports to begin with. They make you show up two hours early for your five AM flight, just so they can tell you it's been cancelled, and you're forced to pay for a hotel room.  These new security measures are just icing on the cake of reasons to never use airplanes.

As a priest in training, I can't help but be reminded of some statements that Pope Benedict has made about human rights.  Human rights are based off the principle that humans are made in the image and likeness of God.  As the US Constitution says, humans have certain inalienable rights, bestowed on them by their Creator.
But in a world where society at large doesn't believe in a creator god, human rights tend to evaporate. In a world where humans are the by-products of random chance, there is no reason for giving them special treatment.  In other words, when God is the basis of human rights in society, and you eliminate God, you also eliminate human rights.
Historically, people justified an abuse of human rights by saying the victims are not humans, so they do not deserve rights.  Today, people justify abusing human rights by saying that nobody deserves human rights. It's a slight twist in thinking, and a dangerous one at that.


Sofia said...

Okay, first of all, when I read the title, "Come Fly With Us," I couldn't help but think of the song "Come Fly With Us" from the first episode of Total Drama World Tour...lol XD

Up! Up! Up! Up!
Sing! Sing! Sing! Sing!
We're flying, and singing,
We're flying and we're singing...

Anyway, the airport security is just...stupid. And the fact that people like Hilary Clinton don't even have to go through it is sickening. "Of course we don't care. We don't have to go through it. So we're going you let you guys suffer to protect us from terrorists instead."

Pah, politicians ;p

SammySleuth said...

I totally agree with you. Luckly, I have never been on an airplane before. And hopefully, won't any time soon. (Or at least until they get rid of these dumb body scanners, or whatever they are. I am not Catholic, I'm a Christian. But I do agree with what you are saying here. And I do think that politics are always getting in the way. I would like to hear what Hilary Clinton would say about these security scanners after she goes threw one. (Like she ever will)And yes, they might be protecting the country, but there has to be some other smart way to do check for bombs or guns, or whatever the Security is looking for. Anyway, thanks for sharing. :) ~Sam

Diana said...

Seriously allowing "celebrities" (for lack of a better word) to not have to go through with it is stupid. What if some terrorist dressed up as...hmm that's stupid too but you get my drift. And how can she make compassionate comments if she doesn't have to go through with it...I am a Catholic and I believe strongly on the human rights aspect of things... I completely agree with you!

Alana said...

Hmm. That's confusing. I don't really know how I feel about it, haha. Mostly because I don't really believe in a God, but I do believe in human rights... but from how I'm understanding your last few paragraphs that's not possible... or am I looking into it wrong? I don't know. I believe that all people should be treated fairly regardless of religion or anything. If the government puts out these laws on average citizens, they should put them in affect for everyone. Just because Hilary Clinton is Hilary Clinton, she shouldn't be treated differently... unless she has like her own private jet. Which she probably does. :P

I don't know how I feel about the heightened airline procedures either. In a way, I feel like I'm getting punished for a few stupid people who decide to do things like hijack planes, but another part of me feels like I would be willing to give up a few of my personal rights to make sure the plane is safe for myself and others. .. I don't know, some issues I have a clear cut opinion on, and this is not one of them, haha... mostly because I never fly, I'm terrified of airplanes and heights, so it doesn't really affect me.

Anonymous said...

airport security can be a pain if you need to get somewhere fast, i totally agree.

Balin said...

Next week, I'm flying home for Christmas break, and this is the first time I'm actually nervous. Not the flying part, but the TSA-"security" part.

And I totally agree with your assessment of human rights (I'm Christian, by the way). From what I've read and heard, the new "security measures" are making a lot of people feel less secure about their rights. Scary stuff.

Airam said...

Whenever I get touched in the "no fly-zone." I feel like I've been molestered.

Anonymous said...

Thankfully, my family never brings anything dangerous on flights, we show our stuff and put it in the tray, and so on. Of course, there are the x-rayish scanners, so you don't have to go through the hassle and embarrassment of old security checks. But we always choose to do so for some reason. We live in the U.S., where the new security laws are in place. Oh well. It's all part of the post-9/11 hype that's "in" right now.