Since 11 September 2001, We've All Got Used to Tight Airport Security, but Now Every Single Piece of Luggage Passing through America's 429 Airports Must Be Searched Individually

By Stephen, Andrew | New Statesman (1996), August 18, 2003 | Go to article overview

Since 11 September 2001, We've All Got Used to Tight Airport Security, but Now Every Single Piece of Luggage Passing through America's 429 Airports Must Be Searched Individually


Stephen, Andrew, New Statesman (1996)


I've had three bad experiences travelling in the United States this year. First, a suitcase was ruined after I flew from Florida to Washington. Then a bottle of pills was strewn around a bag inside my suitcase after I checked it into an airport. Third, a travel alarm clock appeared to have been stolen after I flew to Portland, Maine: In each case, I blamed a new policy introduced by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at the beginning of this year: the 1.5 billion pieces of luggage checked in at airports each year now have to be searched individually for explosives.

I am not talking about having to take off shoes, loosen belts, be searched by electronic wand or having hand luggage checked at security gates. We have all become used to that since 11 September 2001. This is new this year at all the 429 commercial airports in the US: after you see your baggage disappear down a conveyor belt at the check-in desk, it is likely to be opened and hand-searched by TSA employees. If your bag is unlocked, searchers will simply open it and screen it, says the TSA. "If the bag is locked ... then locks may have to be broken," its official advice goes on. Then, just to remind us we are in America, the advice adds reassuringly: "You may still transport a firearm in your baggage."

In the first six months of this policy, there were 6,700 complaints that luggage had been broken or items stolen. A rap star named Lil' Kim reported earlier this summer that jewellery worth a quarter of a million dollars had been stolen from her Louis Vuitton bag (moral: use shoddy suitcases). A man named Mike Peree says his rolls of collector coins were stolen. Paul Hudson, executive director of an airline consumer group, says: "There is just no guarantee that your luggage is secure any more."

Two luggage screeners in Miami have been charged with grand larceny for stealing various items from checked luggage; another baggage handler was arrested in New York on charges of stealing thousands of dollars from checked luggage. The theory behind the new rules, it must be said, is inescapably justifiable: in the era of suicide bombers such as Richard Reid, the Briton who tried to blow up a Paris-Miami flight by igniting explosives in his shoes, it is no longer enough to match each piece of luggage with a passenger. Individually, each suitcase has to be searched for explosives in case a suicide bomber has checked it in.

The problem is that different airports use different methods to search the luggage. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Since 11 September 2001, We've All Got Used to Tight Airport Security, but Now Every Single Piece of Luggage Passing through America's 429 Airports Must Be Searched Individually
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.