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Wednesday, December 20, 2006
My first post in a while... and it is a lame one.

This story really bugs me. It illustrates everything that is wrong with journalism today.

Here it starts:

A woman going through security at Los Angeles International Airport put her month-old grandson into a plastic bin intended for carry-on items and slid it into an X-ray machine.

For most people, that's the end of the story. But not for today's breed of journalists -- nope, we need to do some digging to show how this illustrates some failure on the part of the system or injustice. The journalist raises several potential issues here, including:

** understaffing at TSA
** privatization of some of the people who tell you to put things in the little plastic bins -- which is a problem since that job should really be left to a public employee (or two!).
** failure to properly deal with spanish-speaking travellers and not giving them the assistance they need.

The spokesperson for the TSA sounded pretty exasperated if you read through the lines:

"We're trying to figure out what changes we can make, short of putting up signs saying, 'Don't put your baby through the X-ray machine,' " Melendez (TSA spokesperson) said. "We're trying to determine how we can make this not happen again."

In other words, we pretty much can't stop people from being idiots. Its an airport x-ray machine - do we have to tell you not to put your kid in it?

According to the story, it has happened twice in twenty years. That sounds like a crisis to me. Or a lawsuit.

We can't just say -- holy cow, what an idiot that lady is without making everything fit various agendas?

A bit of radiation only makes you stronger, it's just not to be abused. I had 17 chest x-rays in one month, and infant can take a body scan. The mother should rub a little dirt on the child, rinse, and go on.
What if the kid did have an ass bomb? Which I believe to be the next wave in terror.
Better to be safe.
You can't just say she's dumb and move on. That's noit a story. We have to determine why she's so dumb. What inequalities and social injustices have resulted in her being so dumb. That is the story.

Mark, I can recall a few nights "back in the day" when following an Ortlieb's or two and a late night stop at the Taco Maker you could have been accused of sporting an "ass bomb." Better to be safe indeed...
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