A Sad Story about Molly and the TSA
This is Molly. I don't know her, or her last name. What I do know is, she is a sweet old lady who was just ahead of me in the line for TSA screening. And this is her story. If you don't like it, I hope you SHARE this story, and +1 it. Without significant attention, nothing will change.+Cali Lewis
and I arrived at DFW Airport to take a trip to Detroit. As one would expect, we had to go through security, and just ahead of us in line was a lady named Molly. I took notice because the woman doing the initial security check instantly recognized her as a person who had just come through previously.
"You're back!" Said the security woman.
"I had to get cough drops," Molly responded.
A little chit-chat ensued, the security woman checked Molly's ID again, and told her to have a nice trip. "You have a happy holiday," Molly replied with vigor!
After proceeding into the X-ray line Molly, who was obviously struggling with health issues - and who was wearing a neck brace, was approached by a female TSA agent who asked her if she was physically able to reach her hands above her head. Molly responded by demonstrating that she could, and was ushered politely into that monstrosity of a backscatter machine that peers through your soul.
Since all of that was taking so long, I fortunately got to just go through the metal detector. Up to this point, I hadn't been paying much attention to what was going on with Molly, though Cali had gotten pulled for screening because she opted out of the backscatter machine.
This is when I became aware that something was very wrong with Molly. The TSA agents had forced her to remove her neck brace, and were requesting that she go through the backscatter machine again. She clearly didn't understand what they wanted, or why they wanted her back in that infernal machine. "My name is Molly," she replied to something they said, not having heard them properly.
Once again they fed her through the machine because something
was throwing off an error.
At this point, I was agitated, and I let it be known publicly. I asked objected on Molly's behalf because there was no one else there to do it for her. I told three different TSA agents that this was uncalled for, I pointed out that she was in no way a threat, and they all even agreed with me. I want to emphasize that last point.
None of them disagreed. But they had to follow procedures.
I requested the supervisor, and when she came over I again voiced my concern that Molly shouldn't be subjected to this treatment. Not only I, but all of the other passengers around were staring in obvious surprise. Again, the supervisor seemed to empathize with Molly's plight. But she was powerless to exercise common sense and simply let the poor old woman pass.
The supervisor ordered the female agent you see in the photo to do a hand screening, at which point she did so and Molly complied. If you want to call what she was doing "complying". As the TSA agent was trying to tell her the procedure Molly said, "I can't hear you". So I'm certain that she was simply being subjected to inspection after inspection because - what else is she going to do?
Molly was easily in her upper 70's or 80's. She was hunched over. She moved slowly, was hard of hearing, and was wearing clothing that clearly wasn't concealing anything substantial. And don't forget, they had just screened her a little while before
, but she had to leave to get her cough drops! Why, in God's name, must we subject our elderly to this level of treatment (4+ screenings)? I would not want my grandparents to be treated this way, nor do I want to be treated this way when I'm that age.
We all want to be secure. But security at what cost? Our forefathers sacrificed themselves to provide the freedom we enjoy today, and the TSA is not making us any safer. They are only stripping us of our dignity.