THE BLOG

A Modest Proposal for the TSA

03/13/2013 02:59 pm ET | Updated May 13, 2013
  • John Malik Food and Beverage/Social Media Consultant

I recently read that the Transportation and Security Administration is purchasing $50 million worth of new uniforms in spite of the fact that President Obama's "Sequester" is forcing sharp cutbacks at many government agencies. Damn, fifty mill is a big chunk of money. I actually like their royal blue outfits; it definitely makes them stand out in a crowded airport. And those snappy uniforms aren't that old either; your friendly airport screeners have only been wearing their current duds since 2008 when they did away with their first uniform. I trust this is money well spent and that they'll be in these uniforms for quite some time. Heck, I think that our US Postal Carriers have been in the same uniform for the last fifty years or so, likewise the Secret Service. I even suspect the Secret Service uniform started that whole "Mad Men" fashion statement, but I digress. Let's get back to that fifty million dollars. Considering our government's cash flow predicament I would like to offer the TSA a much cheaper and more appropriate alternative. And I can recommend this new uniform as someone that has been through the "search" and understands the TSA's deepest, darkest secrets. I've watched TSA agents search wheelchairs of crippled children and the bras of elderly grandmothers so I believe I'm whole-heartedly qualified to make this suggestion.

I would like to propose that all TSA agents now wear trench coats and little else.

OK you're laughing but stop and think about it. If the TSA is going to be in the business of molesting our kids and grandmothers, I'm very uncomfortable with them doing so while wearing the uniform of a US federal officer. We taxpaying, law-abiding citizens should be able to trust an officer of the federal government, especially the ones that are our front line of defense against an Al Qaeda agent bringing down an airliner. And I don't mind seeing federal officers prowling our airports for suspected terrorists. But the searching of innocent travelers that don't even come close to the profile of a hell-bent terrorist confuses me.

So why not have a dedicated squad of searchers hanging out in trench coats and creepy hats, waiting for us in the men's room, eyeballing us from behind a Playboy magazine or leering at us while they sip a draft beer? They could pounce on us when our guard was down and conduct a quick, impulse search, brush past us in the men's room or accost us as we race for our flight. That way we wouldn't feel compelled to complain to our congressional representatives about the harsh treatment our kids or grandmothers are receiving at the hands of federal officers. We could just complain to the local police or perhaps our wives or grandmothers could offer a quick swing of their purse. And this new tactic would also throw off all those pesky libertarians and TEA partiers that run around complaining about the loss of this liberty or that freedom. If we are going to get molested at the airport (and if you fly, eventually you WILL get molested) by federal agents, wouldn't the whole experience make sense if the molesting was done by someone in a knee-length trench coat, a sweat-stained fedora and not much else? And a friend of mine can outfit the entire agency for about 17 million, give or take a couple hundred thousand. I call that a win-win.