The Alphabet Soup of Security

Security yes, but remember we “allow” personal searches by TSA, ICE etc. The government and these agencies must respect that agreement between the citizens and the government. Act like you work for the American people, respect our rights as we acknowledge your responsibility. You are all engaged in these activities to serve the public by making us safer. If you want to be abusive of us, act arrogantly, stupidly, lazy or try to be a tough guy or gal, than you need to be either trained better or fired. As clarification I do fully understand the times in which we live and the security necessities for our nation.

After traveling to several countries the treatment on re-entry into the US was both disrespectful and shameful. How can Americans allow public employees in such important positions as Immigration, Customs and Transportation (TSA) to be so inept, indifferent and really just plain nasty to people? Naturally there are decent professionals doing their job in a proper manner.

While traveling abroad I visited Amsterdam, Hungary, Austria, Germany and the Czech Republic. The security and customs procedures in each country were humane but thorough in their treatment of people. Customs personnel actually spoke to people, asked logical questions, reviewed their paper work and offered assistance to help expedite people through the review process, even those who did not speak their language.

For any Americans who have not experienced the arrogance and attitude of “some” US Customs and Immigration personnel, not all but many, let me explain. We are demonstrating shameful behavior to our citizens and foreign visitors in the name of making us safer. We need to look at what we are doing and decide if our actions really address the problem or only pay lip service to it. If you think what we have is the best we can do, then shame on you and that includes our elected leaders sitting on their exemption from what we experience due to their positions in Washington. I found my treatment and that of others by this alphabet soup of security agencies to be less than our best. Is there no one in our government with the knowledge and brain power to properly administer these agencies? The solution can’t be more money and more people. That is apparently what we are currently doing and it’s costing us a fortune for mediocre service. Upon arrival in the US after a lengthy international flight a rest room would have been a great relief. Instead long lines greeted us, double and triple lines, with no apparent effort to expedite their movement. No verbal help or directions. An electronic check in with finger prints and photos being taken even of infants being held up to cameras by adults. Three additional times checking in with actual personnel. Although never being outside of the secured areas, we still had to exit and pass through security again. Really, is this the best we can do? How can some government workers act responsibly and be helpful while performing their job properly? Others leave much to be desired. We need to place the blame at the top, directors, supervisors and our elected leaders who never quite experience what we, the general public, go through. Maybe that’s the answer. Let’s have our leaders actually be subjected to the same lines and searches that we are. I thought these important people did, that’s how they knew where we need help. Shame on me for being so naive.

When I was in the army the best training instructor told us that we can never be as cruel as our enemies can but if we use our heads we can always outsmart them. It is time to be smarter. It will make us safer and show others who we are because we do it better. Let’s use our heads.

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