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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