Steve Jalsevac

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NewsBytes, Dec. 13 - TSA air passenger screening humiliations

Steve Jalsevac
Steve Jalsevac
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Compiled by Steve Jalsevac

NOTABLE TSA SCREENING ABUSE INCIDENTS

Note: These are incidents that have received wide publicity. It takes uncommon courage for those involved to have gone public with these personal trials encountered by themselves or their family members. Undoubtedly there have been far more similar incidents of abuse that have not been publicized because of the timidity, personal embarassment or trauma that the victims have undergone.

Airport staff ‘exposed woman’s breasts, laughed’ - The Australian
A WOMAN is suing over an incident where airport staff allegedly pulled down her top and joked about her breasts in public view. The 23-year-old traveller, from Amarillo, US, is suing the US Government for the emotional distressed she says the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents caused.

NH Grandma groped by TSA blasts ‘invasive’ body search
- Boston Herald

Woman says her Lambert security screening was sexual assault
- Channel 4, Kmov.com, St. Louis
Moroney explains “Her gloved hands touched my breasts…went between them. Then she went into the top of my slacks, inserted her hands between my underwear and my skin… then put her hands up on outside of slacks, and patted my genitals.” “I was shaking and crying when I left that room” Moroney says.  “Under any other circumstance, if a person touched me like that without my permission, it would be considered criminal sexual assault.”

Enhanced pat down leaves Grand Rapids airline passenger in tears - wzzm13, ABC, West Michigan
Before boarding a flight in Grand Rapids, a woman says the search at the security checkpoint was violent, unnecessary and extremely upsetting. “When I got on the plane all I wanted to do was sob,” says traveler Ella Swift. Swift says they told her she was singled out because she was wearing a skirt. She says the search earlier this month was very rough and left her in tears.

“The female officer ran her hand up the inside of my leg to my groin and she did it so hard and so rough she lifted me off my heels,” she says. “I think I yelped. I was in pain for about an hour afterwards. It just felt excessive and unnecessary.” After reviewing the incident, a TSA spokesman says officers involved in the Grand Rapids search acted “appropriately and respectfully.”

Cancer surviving flight attendant told to remove prosthetic breast during pat-down
- WBTV, North Charlotte
“She put her full hand on my breast and said, ‘What is this?’.  And I said, ‘It’s my prosthesis because I’ve had breast cancer.’ And she said, ‘Well, you’ll need to show me that’.” Cathy was asked to show her prosthetic breast, removing it from her bra. “I did not take the name of the person at the time because it was just so horrific of an experience, I couldn’t believe someone had done that to me.  I’m a flight attendant.  I was just trying to get to work.”

TSA pat-down leaves traveler covered in urine
- MSNBC
‘I was absolutely humiliated,’ said bladder cancer survivor

Young Boy strip searched by TSA
- YouTube

Woman on TSA patdowns: ‘I feel molested’
- abc actions news
Woman says granddaughter mortified seeing pat down

Ron Paul: Crotch Groped by TSA, Calls for Boycott of Airlines
- Info wars

Now you can breathe easy, Infidels: Wheelchair-bound nun searched by TSA
- Jihadwatch

Mother harassed over breast milk screening - TSA Abuse blog

Khloe Kardashian: Going through airport security is like being raped in public - NY Daily News


REACTIONS TO NEW INVASIVE SCREENINGS

TSA’s enhanced security spurs US ‘airport rage’ - YouTube

TSA boss: New pat-downs are more invasive
- Yahoo News
The head of the Transportation Security Administration is acknowledging that the new pat-downs are more invasive than what travelers were used to in the past.

Napolitano: The Ball’s in My Court Now - Ann Coulter
- Townhall
After Muslim terrorist Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab of Nigeria tried to detonate explosive material in his underwear over Detroit last Christmas, the government began requiring nude body scans at airports. The machines, which cannot detect chemicals or plastic, would not have caught the diaper bomber. So, again, no hijackers were stopped, but being able to see passengers in the nude boosted the morale of airport security personnel by 22 percent.

Critics say TSA comment ‘opens door to pedophiles’
“Of course this opens the door to future pedophiles, teachers, little friends and others ‘playing’ the ‘pat down game’ with children, and taking it further as the traumatized child tries to understand what is happening,” Dr. Judith Reisman told WND. “What a fantasy! Here they can molest whom they wish freely and with the imprimatur of the state, to ‘protect’ the population. If roughly one in four girls and one in six boys are identified as early molest victims, how many are to be additionally traumatized by these invasive molestations, which indeed they are.

If the Israelis can fully protect their travelers with the simple procedure of profiling, it is unconscionable for our government not to do the same,” she said.
To allow men and women to sexually molest children under the heading of ‘security’ while refusing to profile for terrorists is criminal, in my opinion,” Reisman said.


Pilots and passengers rail at new airport patdowns
- Reuters

Flood of complaints leave TSA relatively unchanged
- Townhall
TSA administrator John Pistole told reporters on a conference call Tuesday that the TSA hasn’t changed anything yet as a result of the public outcry against its latest enhanced pat-downs, but the agency is going back to the Government Accountability Office and other offices to assess whether the procedures can be modified without sacrificing safety.

TSA Administrator: ‘No Exceptions’ to Full Body Pat Downs—For Religious or Any Other Reasons
- CNS
Transportation Security Administration Chief John S. Pistole told a Senate committee yesterday that air passengers selected by the TSA for enhanced screening who decline to undergo either a full-body scan or a full body pat down will not be allowed to board planes in the United States.
There will be no exceptions, Pistole said, even for people who cite religious reasons for refusing to undergo the scan or pat down.

TSA’s Bait and Switch Airport Security Trap
- American Spectator

TSA’s tyrannical tactics threaten American freedoms - Washington Times
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has crossed the line. As if subjecting millions of Americans to X-rated x-ray scans and public groping sessions weren’t bad enough, the agency now threatens $11,000 in fines against anyone refusing to submit to humiliation at the airport.
In Ms. Napolitano’s view, Americans wishing to visit family and friends across the country exercise a privilege granted by the government. Air travel is no longer a free transaction between a member of the public and an airline.

Once freedom at airports is “locked down,” it’s inevitable that TSA will next target buses, trains and the Metro. After all, al Qaeda has attacked each of these modes of transportation in other parts of the world. Strict controls on internal travel is the hallmark of a police state.

TSA searches violating 4th Amendment?
- One News Now
The Rutherford Institute has filed a new lawsuit against the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) in response to its virtual strip searches and full-body pat-downs at airports.
A lawsuit was initially filed on behalf of pilots who refused both versions of the “first line” security screens, but the government decided to relax its rule for them. The Rutherford Institute’s suit, however, is filed on behalf of three travelers

Amid airport anger, GOP takes aim at screening - Washington Examiner
Did you know that the nation’s airports are not required to have Transportation Security Administration screeners checking passengers at security checkpoints? The 2001 law creating the TSA gave airports the right to opt out of the TSA program in favor of private screeners after a two-year period.

Its specialty is what those critics call “security theater”—that is, a show of what appear to be stringent security measures designed to make passengers feel more secure without providing real security. Mica sees TSA’s new “naked scanner” machines and groping, grossly invasive passenger pat-downs as just part of a larger problem. TSA, he says, is relying more on passenger humiliation than on practices that are proven staples of airport security.

Parker: The Problem is Leadership, not Body Scanners
By Star Parker
We’ve been sold, and we’re buying, the big lie that machines can replace human judgment and responsibility. How can we possibly use technology to identify and root out terrorists when the leaders of our country cannot, or refuse to identify with clarity who these individuals are and what they are about?

If Eric Holder cannot, or refuses to see a connection between Islam and terrorism, what, in his view, does define who these individuals are? We citizens are the ones paying the price, in the wasted money we’re shelling out and the humiliating invasions into our privacy So let’s be clear that body scanners are not the problem. They are the symptom. The problem is our leadership in Washington.


MUSLIMS AND TSA SCREENINGS


Muslim Brotherhood Front Group Trains Airport Screeners
- Human Events
The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) has completed training for 2,200 Transportation Safety Officers (TSOs) at the Los Angeles International Airport according to a press release found on the MPAC website. 

Napolitano May Exempt Muslims From Airport Pat-Downs
- Judicial Watch

Airport Security: Let’s Profile Muslims
by Asra Q. Nomani (a Muslim)
As an American Muslim, I’ve come to recognize, sadly, that there is one common denominator defining those who’ve got their eyes trained on U.S. targets: MANY of them are Muslim. We have to choose pragmatism over political correctness, and allow U.S. airports and airlines to do religious and racial profiling.


MORE ON SCREENINGS


It’s ‘Unclear’ If Airport Body Scanners Will Detect Underwear Bombs, Says Gov’t Auditor
- CNS

Why they frisk. Why we should let them
- Jonathan Kay, National Post ·
The people who are scanning, frisking and questioning you are trying to keep you safe, even at the expense of some of your time and dignity. If this is a trade off you refuse to make, perhaps you should take the train.

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Vatican’s doctrine chief: ‘Absolutely anti-Catholic’ to let bishops conferences decide doctrine or discipline

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By John-Henry Westen

VATICAN, March 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has rejected outright the idea floated by Germany’s Cardinal Reinhard Marx that various bishops’ conferences around the world would decide for themselves on points of discipline or doctrine. 

“This is an absolutely anti-Catholic idea that does not respect the catholicity of the Church,” Cardinal Müller told France’s Famille Chrétienne in an interview published today

The question was raised because Cardinal Marx, the head of the German Catholic bishops’ conference and a member of Pope Francis’ advisory Council of Nine, told reporters that the German bishops would chart their own course on the question of allowing Communion for those in “irregular” sexual unions.

“We are not a subsidiary of Rome,” he said in February. “The Synod cannot prescribe in detail what we should do in Germany.”

Vatican Cardinal Müller remarked that while episcopal conferences may have authority over certain issues they are not a parallel magisterium apart from the pope or outside communion with the bishops united to him.

Asked specifically about Cardinal Marx saying that the Church in Germany is “not a subsidiary of Rome,” the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said pointedly “the president of an Episcopal Conference is nothing more than a technical moderator, and as such has no special teaching authority.”  He added moreover, that the dioceses in a particular country “are not subsidiaries of the secretariat of an Episcopal conference or diocese whose Bishop presides over the Episcopal Conference.”

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The CDF head warned that “this attitude makes the risk of waking some polarization between the local churches and the universal Church.” He did not however believe that there was the will for Episcopal conferences to separate from Rome.

The important interview also saw Cardinal Müller contest the notion that the pastoral practice or discipline could change while retaining the same doctrine. “We can not affirm the doctrine and initiate a practice that is contrary to the doctrine,” he said.

He added that not even the papal Magisterium is free to change doctrine. “Every word of God is entrusted to the Church, but it is not superior to the Word,” he said. “The Magisterium is not superior to the word of God. The reverse is true.”

Cardinal Müller rejected the notion that we would have to modify Christ’s unflinching words totally forbidding divorce and remarriage.  We cannot “say that our ministry should be more cautious than Jesus Christ Himself!”  Nor could we, he added, say that Christ’s teaching is out of date or that “we need to correct or refine Jesus Christ because He lived in an idealistic world.” 

Rather, the cardinal said, bishops must be ready for martyrdom.  Quoting Jesus he said, “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and if we speak all kinds of evil against you because of me.”

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‘Groundbreaking’: Kansas may become first state to ban dismemberment abortions

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By Ben Johnson

TOPEKA, KS, March 26, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Kansas will become the first state in the country to ban a procedure in which unborn children are dismembered in the womb, if Gov. Sam Brownback signs a bill that recently passed the state legislature.

The state House passed a ban on dilation and evacuation (D&E) abortions, called dismemberment abortions in common parlance, by 98-26 on Wednesday.

The Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act, which had already passed the state Senate in February 31-9, now heads to Gov. Brownback's desk.

Brownback, a staunch defender of life, is expected to sign the act into law.

"Because of the Kansas legislature's strong pro-life convictions, unborn children in the state will be protected from brutal dismemberment abortions," said Carol Tobias, president of the National Right to Life Committee, which has made banning dismemberment abortions a national legislative focus.

The procedure, in which an abortionist separates the unborn child's limbs from his body one at a time, accounts for 600 abortions statewide every year.

Nationally, it is “the most prevalent method of second-trimester pregnancy termination in the USA, accounting for 96 percent of all second trimester abortions,” according to the National Abortion Federation Abortion Training Textbook.

“It’s just unconscionable that something happens to children that we wouldn’t tolerate being done to pets,” Katie Ostrowski, the legislative director of Kansans for Life, told The Wichita Eagle.

Leading pro-life advocacy groups have made shifting the debate to dismemberment a national priority, with similar legislation being considered in Missouri and Oklahoma. Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., who is NRLC's director of state legislation, called the bill's passage in Topeka “groundbreaking.”

"When the national debate focuses only on the mother, it is forgetting someone," she said.

The abortion lobby has made clear that it is uncomfortable engaging in a public relations tussle on this ground.

Elizabeth Nash, the senior state issues associate of the Guttmacher Institute, said that dismemberment is “not medical language, so it’s a little bit difficult to figure out what the language would do.”

On the state Senate floor, Democrats tried to alter the bill's language on the floor by replacing the term “unborn child” with fetus. “I know some of you don’t believe in science. But it’s not an unborn child, it’s called a fetus,” said state Senator David Haley, D-Kansas City.

If the bill becomes law, the abortion industry has vowed to fight on.

Julie Burkhart, a former associate of late-term abortionist George Tiller, said the motion's only intention is “to intimidate, threaten and criminalize doctors.”

“Policymakers should be ashamed,” she said, adding, “if passed, we will challenge it in court.”

Gov. Brownback has previously signed conscience rights protections and sweeping pro-life protections into law.

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How NOT to move beyond the abortion wars

Anne Hendershott
By Anne Hendershott

March 26, 2015 (CrisisMagazine.com) -- A few years ago, when an undergraduate student research assistant of mine—a recent convert to Catholicism—told me that he was planning to meet with a well-known dissenting Catholic theology professor who was then ensconced in an endowed chair at a major metropolitan Catholic university, I told him: “Be careful, you might end up liking him too much.” I jokingly told my student not to make eye contact with the theologian because he might begin to find himself agreeing with him that Catholic teachings “really allow” for women’s ordination and full reproductive rights—including access to abortion.

I was reminded of that conversation this week when I began reading a new book by yet another engaging Catholic theology professor at a major metropolitan university who also claims (pg 6) that the argument he puts forward in his book, Beyond the Abortion Wars, is “consistent with defined Catholic doctrine.” Written by Charles Camosy, associate professor of theology at Fordham University, the new book purports to be in line with Catholic teachings and promises “a way forward for a new generation.” But, Camosy delivers yet another argument for a woman’s right to choose abortion when confronted with an unborn child that he has described—in the past—as an “innocent aggressor.”

Indeed, Camosy has spent much of his career trying to convince us that he knows Catholic teachings better than the bishops. Criticizing Bishop Olmsted for his intervention and excommunication of a hospital administrator for her role in the direct abortion at a Phoenix Catholic hospital, Camosy suggested in 2013 that “the infamous Phoenix abortion case set us back in this regard.” Implying that Bishop Olmsted was not smart enough to understand the moral theology involved in the case, Camosy claimed that “The moral theology in the case was complex—which makes the decision to declare publicly that Sr. McBride had excommunicated herself even more inexplicable. The Church can do better.” For Camosy, “Catholics must be ready to help shape our new discussion on abortion. And we must do so in a way that draws people into the conversation—not only with respectful listening, but speaking in a way that is both coherent and sensitive.”

This new book is likely Camosy’s attempt to “draw people into the conversation.” But, there is little in his book that is either coherent or sensitive. Claiming to want to move “beyond” the abortion wars, Camosy creates an argument that seems designed to offend the pro-life side, while giving great respect to those who want to make sure abortion remains legal.

Especially offensive for pro-life readers will be Camosy’s description of the abortifacient, RU-486 as a form of “indirect abortion.” The reality is that RU-486, commonly known as the “abortion pill,” effectively ends an early pregnancy (up to 8 weeks) by turning off the pregnancy hormone (progesterone). Progesterone is necessary to maintain the pregnancy and when it is made inoperative, the fetus is aborted. For Camosy, who claims that his book is “consistent with settled Catholic doctrine,” this is not a “direct” abortion. To illustrate this, Camosy enlists philosopher Judith Jarvis Thompson’s 1971 “Defense of Abortion”—the hypothetical story of the young woman who is kidnapped and wakes up in a hospital bed to find that her healthy circulatory system has been hooked up to a famous unconscious violinist who has a fatal kidney ailment. The woman’s body is being used to keep the violinist alive until a “cure” for the violinist can be found. Camosy makes the case—as hundreds of thousands of pro-choice proponents have made in the past four decades—that one cannot be guilty of directly killing the violinist if one simply disconnects oneself from him. Likewise, for Camosy, simply taking the drug RU 486 is not “directly” killing the fetus. He writes:

The drugs present in RU 486 do not by their very nature appear to attack the fetus. Instead, the drug cuts off the pregnancy hormone and the fetus is detached from the woman’s body…. Using RU 486 is like removing yourself from [Judith Jarvis Thompson’s] violinist once you are attached. You don’t aim at his death, but instead remove yourself because you don’t think you have the duty to support his life with your body…. Some abortions are indirect and better understood as refusals to aid (pp 82-83).

Perhaps there are some readers who will find Camosy’s argument convincing, but I am not sure that many faithful Catholic readers will agree that it is consistent with settled Catholic doctrine.

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As one who is hardly a bystander in the abortion wars, I wanted to like this book. As an incrementalist who celebrates every small step in creating policy to protect the unborn, I had high hopes that this book would at last begin to bridge the divide. A decade ago, in my own book, The Politics of Abortion, I joined the argument begun by writers like Marvin Olasky in his Abortion Rites: A Social History of Abortion in America, that it is more effective to attempt to change the hearts and minds of people than to create divisive public policy at the federal level. I share Charles Camosy’s desire to end the abortion wars—but this war cannot end until the real war on the unborn ends. This does not mean that the two sides cannot work together—battling it out at the state level—where there is the opportunity for the greatest success. But, complex philosophical arguments on whether RU 486 is a direct or indirect form of abortion are not helpful to these conversations.

Camosy must know that we can never really “end” the abortion wars as long as unborn children are still viewed as “aggressors” or “invaders” and can still be legally aborted. Faithful Catholics know that there is no middle ground on this—the pro-life side has to prevail in any war on the unborn. It can be done incrementally but ground has to be gained—not ceded—for the pro-life side. Besides, Camosy seems a bit late to the battlefield to begin with. In many ways, he seems to have missed the fact that the pro-life side is already winning many of the battles through waiting periods, ultrasound and parental notification requirements, and restrictions on late term abortion at the state level. More than 300 policies to protect the unborn have been passed at the state level just in the past few years. The number of abortions each year has fallen to pre-Roe era levels—the lowest in more than four decade.   Much of these gains are due to the selfless efforts of the pro-life community and their religious leaders. Yet, just as victory appears possible in many more states, Camosy seems to want to surrender by resurrecting the tired rhetoric—and the unconscious violinists—of forty years ago.

While it is disappointing, it is not unexpected considering Camosy’s last book lauded the contributions of Princeton’s most notorious professor, Peter Singer—the proponent of abortion, euthanasia and infanticide. Claiming that Singer is “motivated by an admirable desire to respond to the suffering of human and non-human animals,” Camosy’s 2012 book, Peter Singer and Christian Ethics: Beyond Polarization, argues that, “Though Singer is pro-choice for infanticide, on all the numerous and complicated issues related to abortion but one, Singer sounds an awful lot like Pope John Paul II.”  In a post at New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, a progressive organization led by Rev. Richard Cizik (a former lobbyist for the National Association of Evangelicals who was removed from his position because of his public support for same sex unions, and his softening stance on abortion) Camosy wrote that he found Singer to be “friendly and compassionate.”  Camosy currently serves on the Advisory Board of Cizik’s New Evangelical Partnership—where he has posted Peter Singer-like articles including: “Why Christians Should Support Rationing Health Care.”

One cannot know the motivations of another—we can never know what is in another’s heart so it is difficult to know why Charles Camosy wrote this book. It must be difficult to be a pro-life professor at Fordham University—a school known for dissenting theologians like Elizabeth Johnson. But, if one truly wants to advance a culture of life in which all children are welcomed into the world, it would seem that inviting Peter Singer to be an honored speaker to students at Fordham in 2012 is not the way to do it, nor would claiming that RU-486 “may not aim at death by intention.” Perhaps it is unwise to continue to critically review Camosy’s work from a Catholic perspective because it gives such statements credibility—and notoriety. But, as long as Camosy continues to claim that his writings and policy suggestions—including his newly proposed “Mother and Prenatal Child Protection Act”—are “consistent with defined Catholic doctrine,” faithful Catholics will have to continue to denounce them.

Reprinted with permission from Crisis Magazine. 

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