Sunday, April 8, 2012

Why I Opt Out

For the second time this week, I have chosen not to have my picture taken by backscatter x-ray. Why? I'm sure some other passengers wonder - although this time I was the first in a queue of three who opted out in quick succession.

I opt out because I want oppression to look like oppression. I don't want to allow the powerful to mask their control over the weak by hiding behind technology. Like drones in warfare, machine imagining in security dehumanizes and diminishes the subject.

I can't fight every battle, and I need to fly (although longer security lines might lead me to do something dangerous). But given the choice, I would rather be the victim of obvious indignity than of whitewashed indignity.

4 comments:

Chops said...

Here's a worthwhile and detailed summary of the issues, from an expert: http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2010/11/tsa_backscatter.html

Matthew Baddorf said...

Out on the job prowl? Where?
And good food for thought. I'll be flying back tomorrow; now I need to decide whether to get the scan rather than taking it without much thought.

taoist said...

I actually find the pat-down less intrusive and humiliating than the backscatter. I think it's because every time they have to do the pat-down they're a lot more worried about a lawsuit or scene of some sort.

bpf said...

this really doesn't make any sense to me salim