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Saturday, November 13, 2010

New TSA Rules on Scans and Searches

From the desk of Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano:

To:  TSA Airport Security Screeners

Dear TSA Security Screeners,

I realize there has been a great deal of controversy lately concerning the use of our full-body x-ray devices, as well as the accompanying manual pat-downs for individuals who choose to opt-out of the x-ray screen.  After conducting a thorough review of our procedures and thoroughly consulting with Attorney General Eric Holder, I am issuing the following guidelines and talking points for use when interacting with members of the general public who have questions or concerns about our screening procedures. 

1)   First of all, it will remain our basic procedure to randomly select passengers for x-ray screening.  If there are concerns about radiation, please be aware that this machine exposes an individual to no more than the equivalent of forty-three x-rays at the doctor's office.  Travelers expressing concern about the radiation should be advised that it is "roughly equivalent" to a doctor's x-ray, please do not advise them of the total amount of radiation as they are not on a "need to know" list for that level of specific information. 

2) Travelers who are concerned about x-ray exposure are allowed to opt out of screening, but must submit to an "enhanced pat down" search.  First of all, draw as much attention to the traveler opting out as possible in front of other travelers, preferably by loud vocalizations.  This will help to discourage other travelers from opting out of the x-ray.  Next, make the pat-down as uncomfortable as possible.  There should be a "frank" examination of the groin region, as well as the chest/breast area for female passengers.  We will soon be distributing surgical gloves for full cavity searches as well.  Remember to advise travelers that if they refuse both the x-ray and enhanced pat down they are subject to immediate arrest with a presumption of guilt for an attempted terror attack.

3)  In the event that minor children are randomly selected for the x-ray all above procedures will still apply.  Please make sure that parents are aware that they are NOT allowed to be present during "enhanced pat down" procedures conducted upon their children.  If they object make sure they are aware that the x-ray is still an option; if they continue to cause trouble they should be arrested immediately and DHS contacted to take custody of their children.

4)  To avoid concerns of profiling we need to make sure that certain groups are not subjected to this procedure.  Specifically, there has been a great deal of concern amongst our peace-loving Muslim community about the continuous backlashes they have endured in the last decade.  As a result, should an individual wearing recognizable Muslim attire be randomly selected for screening please allow them to go on through and simply screen the next person in line.  This should assuage any concerns our Muslim community has in regard to profiling, as well as relieving us of legal liability for profiling. 

5)  Per President Obama's executive order 13666, any newly-elected member of the Republican party headed to Washington, D.C., should be subjected to both x-ray screening and an "enhanced pat down."  If they refuse either procedure they should be arrested immediately as per the above guidelines.  Attorney General Eric Holder has assured me there will be no Constitutional or other legal issues in following this directive as their refusal would constitute a breach of the peace.

I hope this has cleared up any concerns or questions you have regarding our new x-ray screening and "enhanced pat down" procedures. 

Thank you for you service,

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano

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