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Let’s try profiling AND screening.

February 18, 2010

The TSA is now going to send agents wandering through airports with portable explosive detectors. What’s their goal?

Using the sensors randomly on passengers as they wait to board airplanes or in security lines will “create increasing uncertainty for the adversaries, which is always positive,” Jenkins said.

Do they seriously believe what they are saying?  Randomly screening passengers?  That is just insanely inefficient and practically useless.

In epidemiology, we are taught that screening is most effective if you focus the screening on that part of a population which is most at risk of having the disease.  You don’t screen men for cervical cancer and you don’t screen elderly nuns for explosives.

The TSA should look to the Israelis for lessons on identifying possible terrorists and then screen those individuals for explosives but that won’t happen.

The Christmas Day Underwear Bomber would probably have not been screened.  Why?  Because he’s Muslim.  The screener would be too busy ostentatiously scanning old white women to give the appearance of fairness.  In fact, the more Muslims on a plane, the few of them that would be screened.  Wouldn’t want it to appear that we’re unfairly focusing on young Muslim men, would we?

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