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Airport Scanners, `Enhanced' Patdowns Bring Suit by Harvard Law Students

Airport Scanners, `Enhanced' Patdowns Bring Suit by Harvard Law Students

Old Dec 1, 10, 9:13 pm
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Airport Scanners, `Enhanced' Patdowns Bring Suit by Harvard Law Students

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-1...etts-pair.html

Two Harvard University law students sued the U.S. government over “nude body scanners” and “enhanced pat-downs” at airports, claiming they violate constitutional rights.

Jeffrey Redfern, 27, and Anant Pradhan, 23, who are members of the law school’s class of 2012, said the security measures taken at airports are “intrusive” and violate the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, according to a complaint filed Nov. 29 in federal court in Boston.

The students, who said they are regular travelers who use Boston’s Logan International Airport, seek a declaration that mandatory screening using the enhanced measures is unconstitutional and a ban on the techniques “without reasonable suspicion or probable cause.”
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Old Dec 1, 10, 9:18 pm
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Thanks for posting. It will be interesting to see if they get somewhere..
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Old Dec 1, 10, 9:19 pm
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God Bless 'em! And this coming from a hotbed of unabashed liberalism

I wish them luck and I hope the courts have the common sense to see the light.
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Old Dec 1, 10, 9:22 pm
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All the best to them! Good practice for lawyers-to-be and maybe they'll hit a home run.
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Old Dec 1, 10, 9:54 pm
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Bring it on, bring them on and file it - we aren't counting on the ACLU to be our pals, but there must be one high power DC-based pro bono law firm not on Chertoff's side, ready & willing to defend THE Constitution of the U.S. of A.

Civil Disobedience - America's proud tradition (.... nonviolence for change)
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Old Dec 1, 10, 10:00 pm
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Good project for law students. Anyone find it ironic that Obama is a former professor of constitutional law?
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Old Dec 1, 10, 10:03 pm
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This will likely push further back any ACLU attempt at a lawsuit. They will likely sit back and watch this one and learn.
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Old Dec 1, 10, 10:05 pm
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Godspeed.
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Old Dec 1, 10, 10:24 pm
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Old Dec 2, 10, 1:23 am
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Originally Posted by bluenotesro View Post
God Bless 'em! And this coming from a hotbed of unabashed liberalism

I wish them luck and I hope the courts have the common sense to see the light.
This is exacty why TSA abuse is not a left or right issue. It is an atorcity that affects ALL of us*.

*Except elected congress officials apparently.
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Old Dec 2, 10, 1:52 am
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Try to remember that Nixon never targeted the right. So liberals have far more experience with being the target of undercover campaigns to attack them. Some of them actually RECALL being the target. And don't wish to have it happen again.
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Old Dec 2, 10, 6:32 am
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While I agree that these are unconstitutional, I wonder if anyone has filed a suit yet dealing with the machines involved in the screening are not authorized by law.

Specifically from Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004
Sec. 44925. Deployment and use of detection equipment at airport screening checkpoints

`(a) WEAPONS AND EXPLOSIVES- The Secretary of Homeland Security shall give a high priority to developing, testing, improving, and deploying, at airport screening checkpoints, equipment that detects nonmetallic, chemical, biological, and radiological weapons, and explosives, in all forms, on individuals and in their personal property. The Secretary shall ensure that the equipment alone, or as part of an integrated system, can detect under realistic operating conditions the types of weapons and explosives that terrorists would likely try to smuggle aboard an air carrier aircraft.
IANAL but it seems like these machines do not detect any weapons or explosives. They are imaging machines.

Is there something specific in the law somewhere that I missed allowing for the imaging of passengers?
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Old Dec 2, 10, 7:24 am
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Originally Posted by myadvice View Post
IANAL but it seems like these machines do not detect any weapons or explosives. They are imaging machines.
Yes, but one way you detect something hidden on something is by imaging. So I don't see your point.
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Old Dec 2, 10, 7:28 am
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Originally Posted by RichardKenner View Post
Yes, but one way you detect something hidden on something is by imaging. So I don't see your point.
No, that is the way a person detects something; looking at an image.

A metal detector detects metal; it beeps.
A smoke detector detects smoke; it beeps.

Taking a picture does not detect anything.

(edited to add)

In a few years the MMW technology may be able to detect explosives through spectral analysis. IMHO If this happens, and the machine is used in a mode that automatically sets off an alarm of some sort (instead of showing the operator an image) then the machine would be considered a detector.

Last edited by myadvice; Dec 2, 10 at 7:39 am
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Old Dec 2, 10, 8:21 am
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Originally Posted by myadvice View Post
No, that is the way a person detects something; looking at an image.

A metal detector detects metal; it beeps.
A smoke detector detects smoke; it beeps.

Taking a picture does not detect anything.

(edited to add)

In a few years the MMW technology may be able to detect explosives through spectral analysis. IMHO If this happens, and the machine is used in a mode that automatically sets off an alarm of some sort (instead of showing the operator an image) then the machine would be considered a detector.
You're talking about ATR (Automatic Threat Detection?). Guess it's all about how much data you have access to (how powerful/accurate the scan), and how accurate the software. ATR fixes the detect issue, yet not quite sure it fixes the health-concerns issue.
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