Katie Kieffer

I’m reading the Constitution and I do not see a “Grope or Scan” clause. The TSA is unconstitutional. Let’s eliminate the TSA.

If you read my columns regularly, you know that I consider the TSA to be a carcinogenic petting zoo. I nearly always opt out. I object to the scanners on principle of their unconstitutionality. And I am concerned about the possibility of a scanner malfunction (thousands of service calls have been made to the backscatter X-ray machines)—which medical experts warn can result in extremely high radiation exposure.

Last week, I was traveling to New Jersey to speak at Americans for Prosperity’s Defending the American Dream Summit. I nearly missed my flight. And it was not because I overslept.

I arrived early to the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport and already had my boarding pass. I’m thinking, “I’m golden. I have some extra time to grab breakfast and then relax before my flight.” No such luck.

After placing my luggage on the conveyer belt, I informed the TSA agent (a female) that I would be opting out. She said: “OK, well, you’re going to have to wait a while. Step over there and wait.”

I waited approximately 10 minutes and she never called for an agent. I reminded her that I needed to opt out. Her supervisor came over to her and said: “We are short on female staffers. I need you to do the pat-down and I’ll have another agent take your place up here.” She responded: “No. I don’t want to. I want to stay up here. Can’t you get another female agent to do it?”

He did not reprimand her for refusing to do her job. (This is not the private sector.) Instead, he made me wait until a different female staffer became available, further delaying me.

After my pat-down, the agent’s gloves set off the alarm. So, she did a second, more invasive pat-down in a back room. Her gloves still set off the alarm, so she said they needed to take apart my luggage and individually re-send everything through the X-ray machine.

Two TSA agents and four supervisors (it takes a village) unfolded all my clothes and even tore through my undergarments. They slowly sent small piles of my things through the X-ray machine, using about 15 bins, even though I only had a carry-on suitcase, a purse and a laptop. This process took about 45 minutes and I kept looking up at the clock, thinking: “I’m going to miss my flight!” I asked a TSA agent: “So what happens if I miss my flight?” He said, “You’ll have to work that out with your airline.”


Katie Kieffer

Katie Kieffer is the author of a new book published by Random House, LET ME BE CLEAR: Barack Obama’s War on Millennials and One Woman’s Case for Hope.” She writes a weekly column for Townhall.com. She also runs KatieKieffer.com.