Ron Paul to TSA: Stop Irradiating Our Bodies!

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Ron Paul introduced legislation to protect Americans from physical and emotional abuse by federal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) employees conducting screenings at the nation’s airports:

A BILL – HR 6416

To ensure that certain Federal employees cannot hide behind immunity.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,


No law of the United States shall be construed to confer any immunity for a Federal employee or agency or any individual or entity that receives Federal funds, who subjects an individual to any physical contact (including contact with any clothing the individual is wearing), x-rays, or millimeter waves, or aids in the creation of or views a representation of any part of a individual’s body covered by clothing as a condition for such individual to be in an airport or to fly in an aircraft. The preceding sentence shall apply even if the individual or the individual’s parent, guardian, or any other individual gives consent.

Ron Paul introduced the “American Traveler Dignity Act” (HR 6416) with the following words. (This is a transcript of his actual speech.)

Ron Paul: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I rise this evening to announce that I introduced some legislation today dealing with the calamity that we have found at our airports with TSA. Something has to be done. Everybody is fed up. The people are fed up, the pilots are fed up, I’m fed up.

You know, I’ve come to this floor many times over the past many years and complained about the terrible foreign policy we’ve had, the terrible monetary policy we’ve had, the excessive spending and the debt and also the tax policy. But what we’re doing and what we’re accepting in putting up with at this airport is so symbolic of us just not standing up and saying, “Enough is enough”.

I know the American people are starting to wake up, but our government, those in charge – Congress as well as the executive branch – are doing nothing. Yes, they’re talking about maybe backing off and allowing the pilots to go through. But can you think how silly the whole thing is? The pilot has a gun in the cockpit, and he’s managing this aircraft, which is a missile, and we make him go through this groping x-ray exercise, having people feeling their underwear. It’s absurd, and it’s time we wake up.

The bill I’ve introduced will take care of this. But we have to realize that the real problem is that the American people have been too submissive, we have been too submissive. It’s been going on for a long time, and this was to be expected even from the beginning of the TSA and it’s deeply flawed. Private property should be protected by private individuals, not bureaucrats.

But the bill that I’ve introduced will take care of it. It’s very simple, it’s one paragraph long. It removes the immunity from anybody in the federal government that does anything that you or I can’t do. If you can’t grope another person and if you can’t x-ray people and endanger them with possible x-rays, you can’t take nude photographs of individuals, why do we allow the government to do it? We would go to jail. He’d be immediately arrested if an individual citizen went out and did these things, and yet we just sit there calmly and say, “Oh, they’re making us safe”.

And, besides, the argument from the executive branch is that when you buy a ticket, you have sacrificed your rights, and it is the duty of the government to make us safe. That isn’t the case. You never have to sacrifice your rights. The duty of the government is to protect our rights, not to abuse them and do what they have been doing to us. The pilots hopefully will be exempted from this.

But another suggestion I have that might help us: let’s make sure that every member of Congress goes through this. Get the x-ray and make them look at the pictures, and then go through one of those groping pat downs. And then I think there will be a difference. Have everybody in the executive branch, anybody who is a cabinet member, make them go through it and look at it. Maybe they would pay more attention.

But this doesn’t work, this is not what makes us safer, this is preposterous to think that the TSA has made us safer.

You know, when you think about it, if you look at what’s happened over the past 10 years, during this last decade, we lost 3000 on a terrible, terrible day for America. But since that time in this last decade, we have also lost 6,000 of our military personnel going over there and trying to rectify this problem. We have lost 400,000 people on our government-run highways. We have lost 150,000 individuals from homicides. So I think there’s reason to be concerned, reason to deal with this problem. We’re not dealing with it the right way, we’re doing the wrong thing, and groping people at the airport doesn’t solve our problems.

What has solved our problems, basically, has been that they put a good lock on the door and they put a gun inside the cockpit. That’s been the greatest boon to our safety. Safety should be the responsibility of the individual and the private property owner. But right now, we assume the government’s always going to take care of us and we’re supposed to sacrifice our liberties. I say that is wrong, we are not safer and we also know there are individuals who are making money of this. Michael Chertoff; I mean, here’s a guy who was the head of the TSA – selling the equipment. And the equipment is questionable; we don’t even know if it works, and it may well be dangerous to our health.

You know, the way I see this; if this doesn’t change, I see what has happened to the American people is we have accepted the notion that we should be treated like cattle. “Make us safe, make us secure, put us into barbed wire, feed us, fatten us up”, and then they’ll eat us. And we’re a bunch of cattle if we have to wait and say, “We’ve had it”. I think this whole idea of an opt-out day is just great. We ought to opt-out and make the point, get somebody to watch it and take a camera, it’s time for the American people to stand up, shrug off the shackles of our government and TSA at the airport.

These are Ron Paul’s prepared remarks:

Ron Paul: Mr. Speaker, today I introduce legislation to protect Americans from physical and emotional abuse by federal Transportation Security Administration employees conducting screenings at the nation’s airports. We have seen the videos of terrified children being grabbed and probed by airport screeners. We have read the stories of Americans being subjected to humiliating body imaging machines and/or forced to have the most intimate parts of their bodies poked and fondled. We do not know the potentially harmful effects of the radiation emitted by the new millimeter wave machines.

In one recent well-publicized case, a TSA official is recorded during an attempted body search saying, “By buying your ticket you gave up a lot of rights.” I strongly disagree and am sure I am not alone in believing that we Americans should never give up our rights in order to travel. As our Declaration of Independence states, our rights are inalienable. This TSA version of our rights looks more like the “rights” granted in the old Soviet Constitutions, where freedoms were granted to Soviet citizens — right up to the moment the state decided to remove those freedoms.

The incident of the so-called “underwear bomber” last Christmas is given as justification for the billions of dollars the federal government is spending on the new full-body imaging machines, but a Government Accountability Office study earlier this year concluded that had these scanners been in use they may not have detected the explosive material that was allegedly brought onto the airplane. Additionally, there have been recent press reports calling into question the accuracy and adequacy of these potentially dangerous machines.

My legislation is simple. It establishes that airport security screeners are not immune from any US law regarding physical contact with another person, making images of another person, or causing physical harm through the use of radiation-emitting machinery on another person. It means they are subject to the same laws as the rest of us.

Imagine if the political elites in our country were forced to endure the same conditions at the airport as business travelers, families, senior citizens, and the rest of us. Perhaps this problem could be quickly resolved if every cabinet secretary, every member of Congress, and every department head in the Obama administration were forced to submit to the same degrading screening process as the people who pay their salaries.

I warned at the time of the creation of the TSA that an unaccountable government entity in control of airport security would provide neither security nor defend our basic freedom to travel. Yet the vast majority of both Republicans and Democrats then in Congress willingly voted to create another unaccountable, bullying agency– in a simple-minded and unprincipled attempt to appease public passion in the wake of 9-11. Sadly, as we see with the steady TSA encroachment on our freedom and dignity, my fears in 2001 were justified.

The solution to the need for security at US airports is not a government bureaucracy. The solution is to allow the private sector, preferably the airlines themselves, to provide for the security of their property. As a recent article in Forbes magazine eloquently stated, “The airlines have enormous sums of money riding on passenger safety, and the notion that a government bureaucracy has better incentives to provide safe travels than airlines with billions of dollars worth of capital and goodwill on the line strains credibility.” In the meantime, I hope we can pass this legislation and protect Americans from harm and humiliation when they choose to travel.


  • Polar515

    Ron paul 2012! We’re coming for you Washington!

  • wickedandwonderous

    Just a thought. If you are not into getting groped at your local airport strip down to your underwear in front of everyone at the security check. There will be no point to the physical search after that. Plus, I’d like to see the security commissions reaction when half the airport is nearly naked. Make it your silent protest. Pass this idea along if you think it’s a good idea!!!!

  • Michaelwiseguy

    Women are twice the threat to national security man are. They have two large body cavities they can hide explosives in. Men have onlyone.

    All women must have their persons examined very closely to insure our safety. They must be put under twice the scrutiny men are put under.

  • Michaelwiseguy

    I have reliable high level intelligence that female suicide bombers will be blowing up many high value targets with explosives stuffed in their vagina’s (tampon bombs).

    The focus needs to be on women with the suicide bombs stuffed in their vagina’s.

    Take every measure to exam all women for this threat. Men are now low level suspects.

  • Michaelwiseguy

    My high intelligence sources tell me certain women are going to blowing up buildings and airplanes with tampon bombs.

    Be on the lookout.

  • Michaelwiseguy

    Someone needs to stop this big sis from getting on an airplane. She has a tampon bomb stuffed up her vagina. Someone needs to yell this out loud at an airport.

  • Michaelwiseguy

    My sources tell me women will be packing their tampons with explosive material to smuggle it on airplanes. They may even put sticks of dynamite in their vagina’s and take them on airplanes in order to blow planes up with.

    I recommend we take every precaution in order to stop this threat.

  • dskillz1

    Not only doesn’t Congress deal with the TSA, they are exempt from Obamacare, exempt from – oh never mind. Hey how about that Bristol Palin?

  • rspaulding

    The 20 people who ‘dislike’ this probably book daily flights from one side of the country to the other just to get groped, thus satisfying their TSA Fetish.

  • kvrisu

    eet remoo eet remoo eet remoo eet remoo

  • Luther Paine

    Dr. Paul:
    Timely, well written, long overdue principled bill standing up for our individual rights. This is long overdue legislation that captures the essence of American freedom….FROM government, basic and essential to each of us.

    Thank you!

    L. L. Paine

  • PMnews1

    What he said is absolutely true “The American people have been too submissive.” This is the whole problem right here. This is the source of all our problems. There will always be evil psychos in the places of power but they couldn’t do anything if the people didn’t let them.

  • ElRatondeMenomonie

    the idiots who oppose this are idiots. I guess they prefer Muslim terrorists or Timothy McVeigh’s to bring bombs unto planes? I’d rather get frisked, if it will only bring me peace when boarding a plane. I hate flying as it is, so this will only bring us peace of mind. Stupid Americans who oppose this forget that terrorists come in not only dark Muslim sounding names, but also white americans who have converted to Islam and want to wish us harm too if they hate America. Get over it people.

  • baysideful

    Get them Ron! Right on TSA is a joke! Terrorists could hide bombs in thier body cavities!!! Imagine what we would do with that ???? WOULD THEY SEARCH OUR BODY CAVITIES TO???????????

  • CaptainShays

    Since we have anti-discrimination laws regarding religion, color or sexual orientation then the TSA must hire gay man and women when they apply and are qualified. That means gay men may very well be groping our young boys and lesbians may be groping our little girls. Has anyone brought this up?

  • syborius

    this and metal detectors is ALL we need….ban the radiation x-ray nonsense.

  • Eliudmondragon

    Ron Paul for President !

  • dawnyd100

    Too bad Ron Paul isn’t our President. Finally here is a man that actually has common sense. He’s right enough is enough. Start standing up for your rights before it is too late.

  • nellydrumrgrl

    More Ron Paul!


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