Old Aug 6, 12, 10:40 am
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: MSY
Programs: NW Gold and now Delta Gold
Posts: 3,069
What a terrible experience for you and especially your wife. Words don't describe.

I wish I had an easy answer like "write your Congresscritter," "Speak out and become a public face and force them to look you in the eye," etc. but I am not so sanguine that this advice is particularly good or useful. I think it is given to make the person giving the advice feel better, not because it would help you or your wife.

The problem I see here is that there are, literally, millions of survivors who have terrible stories and who may react to seemingly minor triggers. I don't think we can seriously ask the TSA or any other gov't agency to say, "Well, use your common sense, and excuse everyone from touching, secondary screening, etc who has a sad story." Most people with serious mental illness are of no harm to anyone but themselves. Still, we must use our common sense and defend against the tiny percentage who are both suicidal and willing to take out a lot of other people when they go. If someone has an extreme reaction of nerves and a terrible story, then I don't see how the TSA can do other than look at that person more closely.

"Don't fly" seems to me in your wife's case a more practical piece of advice. The family member who has passed wouldn't know she isn't at the funeral, and the family members who want to gossip or misunderstand because she's protective of her own mental health...I would say eff em. Protect your wife. Clearly it was too soon for her to ask her to return to Florida, and it may always be too soon. Blaming the TSA is just a bright shiny distraction. If she ends up in the ER over a patdown of her bra, then she can't fly, not really. It is asking too much to subject her to a known trigger of her illness.

The backscatter devices are worthless junk, I think we can all agree on that. They find the rubber band in my ponytail on virtually every trip -- something anyone with eyes in their head could have found without a million dollar machine. I think they should be removed, and the money wasted on them returned to the taxpayer for better funding/better training of live TSA agents. But I don't think this (which won't happen anyway) would help your wife. She was not assaulted by equipment, she was assaulted by people, and that I suspect is the real trigger.
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