Friday, November 19, 2010

RLC Rejects TSA's Assault on Passenger Privacy Rights

From the national office of the Republican Liberty Caucus -- what I like to call "the Republican wing of the Republican Party" -- comes this press release about the TSA:

For Immediate Release: November 17, 2010

Republican Liberty Caucus Rejects Transportation Security Administration's Assault on Passenger Privacy Rights

AUSTIN, TX -- The Republican Liberty Caucus (RLC) denounces the recent changes in the airport passenger screening practices of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

RLC Chairman Dave Nalle said the intrusive nature of new TSA procedures draws attention to the fundamental flaws in the government's strategy of attempting to address the threat of terrorism through increasingly draconian domestic security measures.

"In the name of public safety, government agencies have been given more and more power at great cost to our civil liberties and in violation of the Bill of Rights," Nalle said. "The emergence of an unaccountable state security apparatus in America is a reminder of Ben Franklin's maxim that 'they who give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety'."

"The new TSA procedures of giving randomly selected passengers a choice between a full body, backscatter x-ray scan and an intrusive, hands-on body search are unacceptable," Nalle contends. "These searches are a clear violation of our 4th Amendment rights, because they are not reasonable and are carried out with no probable cause. The increase in security at airports with more technology and more violation of the privacy rights of passengers cannot be justified on the basis of any increase in the threat of terrorism, because there has been no such increase," Nalle explained.

The Republican Liberty Caucus believes that Americans have seen enough abuses of the Constitution and calls on the federal government to curb abuses by the TSA and other agencies. We recommend putting control of passenger security in the hands of the airlines, which have a vested interest in making sure that flights are safe. We also support Representative Ron Paul's "American Traveler Dignity Act" (H.R. 6416), which would make TSA employees accountable for their actions.

Nalle observed, "With the increasing level of government intrusion into our lives in the name of security, America reminds me too much of what I saw in the Soviet Union, where I lived as a teenager. How long will it be before police will be stopping us in the street at random to ask for our identity papers?"

The Republican Liberty Caucus, founded in 1991, exists to promote individual liberty, limited government, and free enterprise within the Republican Party. Learn more and become a member at


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