Took the wife and kid to the California State Fair yesterday. We held advanced tickets, so we walked right up to the security checkpoint.
Farce #1 - They searched the wife's backpack (evil and dangerous sunscreen, OMFG!) and opened her purse. The backpack I understand, since they asked if they could open it (refusal means no entry, though.) They did not ask if they could open her purse. Courtesy dictates that they should ask - after all women are very private about their purse contents in my experience. Had I known this was coming, I would have advised my wife to pile tampons and pads on the top of the purse, maybe a BIG tube of KY and some other items, just to wig out the guy opening it up. Anything to return the favor, just a bit.
Farce #2 (the big one!) - They never asked me to empty pockets or paid me a second look. I've read the documents that the FBI and other police agencies put out (including nice Powerpoints) about how to spot someone carrying a pistol or other weapon. It would have been really easy for me to get a nice subcompact 9mm or a mousegun through this security point. As it was I got 2 knives through security and another small spray item that could easily have been OC spray (it was just medication, but still - the form-factor is nearly identical). The knives are daily carry items for me, so it wasn't as if I was trying to game the system. Still, at least one of them could have hurt someone if I was so inclined.
While the Theater Thug was searching the wife's backpack, I decided to speak my mind. I told him he should be damned ashamed of himself. You see, today was "Armed Forces and First Responder Day". Way to celebrate and commemorate the sacrifices and risks those people take by effectively shitting on the 4th Amendment (spare me the case law discussion, I disagree that public place = no expectation of privacy). He tried to get into the "I've seen the effects of gang shootings..." argument and I shut him down with "punish the bad, not the good." He was a thug and I made sure to ruin as much of his day as I possibly could and to remind him that there are things more important than a little show of providing a false sense of safety and security.
It's getting near time that either a fundamental shift has to take place at all levels of government, or else I need to start investing in companies that make rope.
Yes, add me to the "list":
We are reluctant to admit that we owe our liberties to men
of a type that today we hate and fear - unruly men,
disturbers of the peace, men who resent and denounce what
Whitman called 'the insolence of elected persons' - in a word, free men.
-Gerald W. Johnson