One of the biggest reasons for having federal employees perform air passenger screening was to ensure uniform application of security procedures across the country. People see everyday what a complete failure that has been.
Going to Florida, I wore a pair of light hiking boots. At the Dane County Airport in Madison I strolled right through security without a problem.
At the West Palm Beach airport in Florida, I wore the same pair of light hiking boots. As I approached the metal detector, a TSA employee stepped in front of me and, without any prologue, said, "If you wear those shoes through the metal detector you're going to secondary screening, even if they don't set off the magnetron. I suggest you take them off and send them through the x-ray system.""Then I'll go to secondary screening," I said. I decided that I'd be bull-headed about the whole thing since that guy was being a jerk and I hadn't had a problem in Madison."You could miss your flight if you go to secondary screening," the TSA troll said, onimously."How long does it take," I asked innocently."Three to four minutes," replied the TSA troll."I'll take my chances," I said and walked through the magnetron with my hiking boots still upon my feet.
Of course, the magnetron didn't go off.
The screener rolled his eyes and directed me to the secondary screening area. There another TSA troll said, "Now, why did you have to go and do that? Did you want to see me work for some reason?"Of course, I had to take my boots off during secondary screening so that they could be sent through the x-ray system and my feet could be wanded.
Since I had nothing on my person deadlier than a cup of coffee (which I had to hold in a hand without rings so that the lazy TSA troll could wand my Dunkin' Donuts coffee) and a handful of change, I escaped the TSA's clutches once again.
However, it is just another in a million member series of TSA-mandated moments of stupidity. When will people get tired of this extremely wasteful and useless practice and demand meaningful change?