There is too much news to stick to topic threads. Here is the weekly open thread, as promised.
Much as been said since Christmas Day about the use of the full body scan. Some countries immediately began using the scanners. Reagan Airport locally is using full body scanners. However, there are many privacy issues that are preventing TSA from implementing these machines from full use at all airports for all passengers.
The body scanners are quite controversial because of privacy and basically, getting a bird’s eye view of people in private areas. Women seem to feel far more violated than do men.
Should all passengers undergo a full body scan or is enough enough? Will the body scanners stop terrorists or is this just another hoop to jump through? Are we giving up all our rights of privacy to be safe or to give an illusion that we are safe?
The following editorial appeared in the New York Times on yesterday, January 5, 2010.
The Editorial is printed in its entirety.
The quest for overhauling immigration received two very welcome lifts on New Year’s Day.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York City, at his inauguration, pledged to help the Obama administration pass immigration reform. Mr. Bloomberg is a force to reckon with, as he proved with his national campaign against illegal guns. On the same day, four young people in Miami, current or former students at Miami Dade College, began their own determined march to Washington in an effort to bring pressure from the grass roots.
Three of the four were brought to this country illegally as children. Like thousands of other young people, they bear no blame for their status, and they are frustrated that their hard work and bright promise lead to a brick wall. Their protest for a chance to become Americans is courageous because it exposes them to possible arrest and deportation. “We are risking our future because our present is unbearable,” one of them, Felipe Matos, told The Times.
Apparently President Obama met with 20 of his closest advisors and agency heads and had a real old fashioned trip to the wood shed with them. According to the Huffington Post:
President Barack Obama scolded 20 of his highest-level officials on Tuesday over the botched Christmas Day terror attack on an airliner bound for Detroit, taking them jointly to task for “a screw-up that could have been disastrous” and should have been avoided.
After that 90-minute private reckoning around a table in the super-secure White House Situation Room, a grim-faced Obama informed Americans that the government had enough information to thwart the attack ahead of time but that the intelligence community, though trained to do so, did not “connect those dots.”
Once again,the talking heads buzzed about what he said and what he didn’t say. Oddly enough, some old enemies gave him higher marks.
Is the president doing as much as you expect to combat terror? Is the increased security at airports going to help combat terrorism or is it ‘chasing the news?’ Will increased sky marshalls help fight terrorism? How about the closer inspection of those whose flight originates in certain countries? Will any US officials be fired?
More importantly, how do you feel those who would do us harm see the resolve of the United States, as evidenced by our President?
Full story in the Washington Post