Another three year old disabled and wheel chair bound terror suspect on his way to Disney World with mom, dad and young siblings, endured his own horrific terror experience at the hands of TSA Chicago Midway International Airport security goons when he was manhandled, searched, frisked, patted down, swabbed and groped like a common criminal while his mortified father looked on videotaping the entire outrage.
The videotape shows, among other assaults, the uniformed thug lifting the terrified child suspect’s shirt to swab his back. Typically, the federal goons with badges will swab a suspect’s hands, articles of clothing or items they are carrying while looking for telltale signs of explosives potentially smuggled onto the plane by baby terrorists.
Matt Dubiel, the father of toddler Rocco Dubiel, posted the 2010 video after rediscovering it last week, saying he became enraged anew when reviewing it. "There is another human being putting their hands on my child. That is not acceptable," he said. "If he was putting his hands on my child at McDonald's or anyplace else, we would immediately have him arrested and call the police."
"I tape recorded it because I wanted to let the gentleman know that was examining my son that there was a camera on him, and anything that he was going to do, that he needed to be comfortable doing on camera. And if he wasn't, he needed to stay away from it."
He was told he could not stand next to his son during the search. "I was told I couldn't comfort or hug my son. I couldn't hug him. I couldn't hold his hand," said dad. "And I tried to make the best out of it. But as I'm standing there as a parent doing this, I'm thinking about, should I do something more; should I not?"
Though Dubiel was angry over the incident he didn’t object because he feared the consequences. "My fear was, if I made a bigger deal out of it, then I could be detained, or we could miss our flight, or we could miss our vacation. All of these things are dancing around in my head," he said. "There hasn't been one instance in the United States of a 3-year-old carrying explosives onto an airplane or doing ill will to anyone."
His fears were well founded.
Under new TSA policy, screeners can work with parents to resolve alarms at the checkpoint. They can make the children go through metal detectors or body scanners multiple times or swab their hands to test for traces of explosives.
"The new modified screening measures have greatly reduced, though not eliminated, pat downs of children," TSA spokesman Greg Soule explained. "While recognizing that terrorists are willing to manipulate societal norms to evade detection, our officers continue to work with parents to ensure a respectful screening process for the entire family at the checkpoint."
But there is no such thing as a respectful assault and battery of an innocent human being, especially a young toddler who is beyond suspicion of any wrongdoing. That’s the problem with the TSA at airports. Screening – reasonable screening -- is one thing. Putting hands on innocent persons without probable cause is another. That’s the freshman law school textbook definition of assault and battery.
The risk of a typical American family wiring their 3-year-old son with explosives and sending him aboard an airplane along with mommy, daddy, grandma, grandpa, baby brothers and sisters is so infinitesimally small as to be nonexistent. Not only has it never happened once in the entire history of aviation, there is absolutely no likelihood that it will ever happen.
So the imaginary risk clearly does not justify such extreme measures. There are far better and more efficient ways to screen passengers for potential terrorists without laying hands on them.
It is long past the time to stop TSA assault and battery at our airports.