Sunday, January 10, 2010

AANR Will Not Publish My Comment? UPDATED

It's been over 24 hours since I left a comment on the AANR blog here, in response to the organization giving its official stamp of approval for airport full body scanners, and my words have not yet appeared. Other comments left much later than mine have been moderated and approved on other blog posts. Is AANR afraid of opposing viewpoints? Here is my comment exactly as submitted:
Equating skinny-dipping with a virtual strip search by government security employees is absurd. The same power granted to the government to make people naked is the same power they can use to force people to stay clothed. Civil liberties are eroding in America, and the twisted thinking that declares body scanners as a positive for nudism is not only irrational, it’s dangerous.
UPDATE 1/11/10 - AANR has now published my comment, as well as several others which also take issue with the organizations stance on airport body scanners. Good for them, opposing viewpoints need to be heard on this issue.

13 comments:

Chris said...

I left a similar comment earlier today and it still shows up as "awaiting moderation." Granted, it's the weekend and AANR might not get around to it until Monday, but I'm probably giving them too much credit. The fact that there are only four comments on that story (all of them positive) is highly suspicious.

Diary of a Naked Wombat said...

Sounds like a desperate attempt to link anything without clothes on as an act of naturism. Such an action is absurd and should not be connected with law enforcement.

As my wife said, "Nudism you get to choose when and where you want to be naked. With this they are forcing you to be naked in a situation where you may have wanted to wear clothing".

I personally am not upset about the scanner but I do not believe that choosing to be naked should be connected to such body scanners or strip searches.

Brain said...

On the one hand, AANR is not bound legally to publish a comment if they don't want to. Then again, if only the opposing viewpoints are suppressed, they lose any credibility that they are interested in an intellectually honest discussion of the issue. I have no personal objection to having a naked image of myself seen, but I agree that this is not about nudity - it's about privacy and freedom, & AANR has come down on the wrong side. Granted, there are notable qualitative differences between home nudity and air travel, but the security-trumps-freedom argument seems to go unquestioned, which is unAmerican, imo.

thomas said...

It took AANR about 4 or 5 days to publish my negative comments a few months back. It's almost as if they had to force themselves to print it. Apparently they hate readers disagreeing with them

J_G_H said...

I disagree with yourview on the scanners, but I agree that it is not good to suppress dissenting opinions - to a point. I wonder if their policy may not be more restrictive than some because they get flooded with posts from anti-naturists to the extent that it would swamp effectively disrupt the purpose of the site.
As for the privacy issue, first there is a valid public safety issue similar to the "Yelling Fire in a Crowded Theater"exception to free speech. Secondly, the scanner is less intrusive than a pat down or actual strip search, the only realistically effective alternatives. I do not expect a perfect defense against terrorist attacks, but I do expect steps to be taken which will make it more difficult for them to succeed. Five or ten deaths in an incident I can accept on the basis of someone flying under the radar, but hundreds of lives and billions in propertty damage form a single incident is not background noise. I distrust absolutes outside of physics. In the case of rights there are often conflicting rights.

Nudiarist said...

JGH, how is a machine which visually strips your clothes off and creates an image less intrusive than a pat-down or a strip search? Seems to me to be the same thing. They just want you to believe it's more benign.

There are already very stringent security measures in place which have been very successful. The underpants bomber got on the plane due to a failure of communication. It is not even clear if a body scanner would have detected the explosives anyway.

It's staggering that innocent people are willing to undergo a strip search by their government simply to maintain an illusion of safety.

Nudiarist said...

Chris, they allowed a comment which was made on 1/10 at about 11 PM. My comment, made more than 24 hours earlier, is still "awaiting moderation". We'll see if AANR is interested in healthy debate, or fearful of opposing opinions. An organization which is declining in membership needs to open itself up to a variety of viewpoints if it hopes to survive.

J_G_H said...

If you have seen the images from the scanners, they pretty much look like a mannequin. While you may view that as the same as taking off your clothes, I do not. As for a pat down, do you really think a visual image is the same as getting felt up?
There was a demonstration on one of the news shows, and it picked up plastic bags full of flour and an explosive simulant. The current system originated to keep hijackers from smuggling guns on board, not suicidal losers with explosives. The puffer machines specific to explosives are reportedly often out of order. Dogs tire, and some cultures have an aversion to dogs, especially sniffing around the crotch. As for the intelligence failure, I wonder how much of it is due to excessive information in the stream. There are probably tens of thousands of false leads for every one which is accurate, and there is likely a much greater ratio of noise to critical information. Most disasters are the result of multiple failures in several layers of design, testing, maintenance and inspection. In the case of terrorism, I regard the scanners as the last in a series of redundant measures. I also figure that even if TSA hires a bunch of voyeurs, they will soon become sated and pay more attention to what is unusual about an image than looking at genitals and nipples.

Nudiarist said...

JGH, you still avoid the basic argument of civil liberties being violated. Once the government is allowed legally to strip search innocent people without due cause, they will be able to justify nearly anything in the name of security. Schools, banks, courthouses, even malls could be next to get these body scanners.

We are using a brick bat to swat a fly.

Paul Rapoport said...

JGH makes some good points. But "there is a valid public safety issue similar to the 'Yelling Fire in a Crowded Theater"exception to free speech' is not a proper analogy.

The TSA always reacts and overreacts. It has no overview of security. It imposes pointless rules. It hires less educated individuals and pays them little. It can't be trusted.

As far as scanners go, there's no indication they would have caught the Detroit-bound person. They're ineffective against materials hidden in body folds, rectums, or vaginas. Exemptions for minors, not to mention the weakness of airport security around employers, pose a problem big enough to fly an airplane through.

Politicians and other public officials like crises up to a point because they can exert more unquestioned power for bad reasons. Any good lawyer should be able to prove that the scanners are unconstitutional, especially because there's no even slightly compelling reason for them.

Elton said...

The scanners are not a good idea.

Anonymous said...

Your civil liberties are fully intact. You have the liberty to not fly, and use a different method of transportation.

Nudiarist said...

Anonymous, yours is a false argument. About 800 million people fly on US airlines each year, so for many it is a necessity, not a choice. You can say the same for automobiles. Imagine if you had to undergo a body search and have your car examined every time you wanted to cross a bridge, or enter another state. Beware any government which seeks to take away personal liberties.