Home > Adversity, assault, Awareness & Prevention, Children, Education, Military, Sex Offenders, Sexual Assault and Rape > Rape victim arrested for refusing TSA pat down

Rape victim arrested for refusing TSA pat down

December 27, 2010

Traveling shouldn’t mean checking your rights when you’re checking your luggage. Yet, more and more, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is asking Americans to sacrifice their privacy for an illusion of security.

A 56-year-old woman who says she is a rape victim was arrested and banned from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport Wednesday after refusing to receive a pat down from a Transportation Security Agency (TSA) officer.

Claire Hirschkind could not receive a body scan because of a pacemaker-type device in her chest and was escorted to a female TSA officer to receive an enhanced pat down.

“I told them, ‘No, I’m not going to have my breasts felt,’ and she said, ‘Yes, you are,’” Hirschkind told KVUE.

After refusing to receive the enhanced pat down, she was arrested.

“The police actually pushed me to the floor, and handcuffed me,” she said. “I was crying by then. They drug me 25 yards across the floor in front of the whole security.”

Hirschkind said her constitutional rights were violated.

About 70 airports have put into use over 400 backscatter x-ray machines that can see beneath passengers’ clothing. Passengers who set off a metal detector or body scan machine or refuses to be scanned receive an invasive physical pat down.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said it received over 900 complaints from travelers in November who were subjected to the new screening procedures of the TSA.

“Under the newly implemented enhanced pat-down, a TSA officer sliders his or her hands over an individual’s breasts, buttocks, groin, and inner thighs, and inserts his or her fingers inside the entire circumference of the pant’s waistband,” a lawsuit filed against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and TSA administrator John Pistole stated.

“Although it is well established that subjecting airline passengers to limited searches designed to detect weapons and explosives is consistent with the Fourth Amendment, it is equally well established that such searches must be reasonable,” the lawsuit added.

In response to the incident at the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, the TSA issued a statement saying “our officers are trained to treat all passengers with dignity and respect” but that “security is not optional.”  “Dignity and respect”, perhaps the entire TSA should schooled on these two words since they are surely displaying that they truly do not understand same.

“The government must keep us safe, but it must do so in a way that is sensible, effective and constitutional,” Laura W. Murphy, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office, said. “The new ‘enhanced’ security methods are far more intrusive than other methods but have not been shown to be any more effective. Nobody should be forced to choose between ‘naked scans’ and intrusive groping by strangers to keep our airplanes safe.”


****Why isn’t the TSA reporting about the security measures being taken about the people who clean the planes or stocks the food and beverage between flights?

****Why are they not disclosing in full the security for the employees of the airlines who are handling scanning and checking baggage that goes into the belly of the planes to give us, civilians peace of mind?

****Why is no one focusing on these areas as civilians are being striped of our constitutional rights?

****And, what about the large cargo that is being flown in the belly of the planes…do they have scanners down below large enough to handle scanning these or are they ripping apart the cargo and boxing them back up?  If so, do they have trained military in place to do this job or bomb sniffing dogs?

TSA is no way equivalent to our military to perform these tasks from security of civilians to the belly of the planes.

You cannot tell me that none of you have not thought about the above.

Again, our CHOICE has been stripped away from us; I would love to see more of our government leaders be exposed to these invasive procedures rather than having the cushy entrance by security, flying their private planes – and come down to reality.  But then again, “they” forget where they came from and money talks.

It personally makes me ill when individuals see NO problem with these “enhanced pat-downs” from the victimization aspect.  What the hell is wrong with people?  These people have no damn idea what it is like to be victimized.

I have learned over the last month that it is not worth getting into a verbal match with ignorance.  They will never understand nor have respect for victimization.  This is a loud and clear message to me about these individuals.  Everyone is entitled to their opinion but you know something……..the majority of these individuals are MEN that are raising hell about females objecting to such invasive and intrusive measures.  For those men, I personally have no respect for them; they couldn’t even begin to walk a mile in our shoes. For the men that are standing up against these drastic measures for themselves, females and children I commend and thank you.

Obviously there was no one in the “decision making arena” that has EVER been victimized nor thought of the possibility of humiliation that has and will be part of these measures.

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