Touched by an Agent: Why the United States Should Look to the Rest of the World for a New Airport Security Scheme and Stop Using Full-Body Scanners

By Taylor, Courteney L. | Houston Journal of International Law, Spring 2013 | Go to article overview

Touched by an Agent: Why the United States Should Look to the Rest of the World for a New Airport Security Scheme and Stop Using Full-Body Scanners


Taylor, Courteney L., Houston Journal of International Law


I.    INTRODUCTION
II.   THE UNITED STATES: THE PROTECTION AGAINST
      UNREASONABLE SEARCHES AND SEIZURES AND THE
      UN-ENUMERATED RIGHT TO PRIVACY (WHATEVER
      THAT MAY MEAN)
      A. What Are the Rights of United States Citizens?
      B. If Every Person in the United States Has Both a
         Right to Privacy and a Right Against
         Unreasonable Searches and Seizures, How Does
         the Government Get Around Those Rights?
III.  THE UNITED STATES' AIRPORT SECURITY MODEL:
      INNOVATION, TECHNOLOGY AND PRACTICALLY A
      COMPLETE RELIANCE ON MACHINES
      A. What Do These Kinds of Machines Do Exactly?
      B. To Put it Nicely, Airline Passengers Detest Full-Body
         Scanners and the Possible Problems They
         Create
IV.   THE UNITED NATIONS' UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF
      HUMAN RIGHTS: INTERNATIONALLY RECOGNIZED
      RIGHTS TO PRIVACY AND AGAINST UNREASONABLE
      SEARCHES AND SEIZURES
V.    AUSTRALIA'S AIRPORT SECURITY MODEL: FOLLOWING
      IN BOTH THE UNITED STATES AND ISRAEL'S FOOTSTEPS

VI.   NIGERIA'S AIRPORT SECURITY MODEL: NO MODEL AT
      ALL

VII.  ISRAEL'S AIRPORT SECURITY MODEL: PERSONAL
      INTERACTION AND GROUP PROFILING
      A. Israel's Largest International Airport: What
         Security Methods Are Being Used in Ben Gurion
         International Airport?
      B. A Day in the Life of a Ben Gurion Passenger
VIII. MEASURES THE UNITED STATES SHOULD EMPLOY IN
      AIRPORTS IN ORDER TO BETTER PROTECT ITS CITIZENS
      A. The United States Should be Relying Partially on
         Technological Advancements in Airport Security
         and Partially on Personal Interaction with
         Passengers
      B. Innovative Security Tactics at Boston's Logan
         International Airport: Footsteps the United States
         Should Follow In
      C. Will Implementing a More Israeli-Like Security
         System be Effective in the United States?
      D. Even if Implementing Israel's Airport Security
         System in America Could be Efficient, Could the
         Country Ever Afford it?
      E. If the United States Refuses to Tax Passengers and
         Refuses to Re-Allocate Funds Towards
         Implementing an Israeli-Like Airport Security
         System, What Alternatives are There?
IX.   CONCLUSION

I. INTRODUCTION

After the tragic events of September 11, 2001, the issues of airport security and terrorism prevention have become some of the most talked about topics of the last twelve years, (1) and with good reason. The attacks America faced all those years ago required quick action in order to better protect citizens worldwide. (2) Countries all over the world have since been trying to beef up security in order to protect their citizens while at the same time trying to keep in mind the protection of the rights of those very citizens. (3) Because most of the technology currently used in airports is brand new, and because what rights citizens may or may not have is usually a very blurry area, (4) the balance between protecting citizens and assuring that their countries are not intruding on their rights is not always easy to strike. (5)

This Comment examines the methods countries across the globe are utilizing in airports, and ultimately, suggests what the United States could be and should be doing. This Comment has six parts. First, it analyzes the United States laws against unreasonable searches and seizures and the United States right to privacy, followed by a discussion of the current measures the United States employs for airport security. A brief discussion of the United Nations' stance on the right to privacy follows. Then the separate rights of privacy, as well as the separate methods of airport security, that exist in Australia, Nigeria and Israel are analyzed. Finally, this Comment proposes a solution to the United States' security issues based on which measures do and do not work in airports throughout the globe.

This Comment argues that while the United States is at the forefront of technology in terms of airport security, the country lacks in one major area: personal interaction.

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Touched by an Agent: Why the United States Should Look to the Rest of the World for a New Airport Security Scheme and Stop Using Full-Body Scanners
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