Thursday, February 18, 2010

TSA Angers Islam

UPDATE: below

On February 9th, the Fiqh Council of North America -- a body of Islamic scholars established for "advising and educating its members and officials on matters related to the application of Shari√Ćah in their individual and collective lives in the North American environment" -- issued a fatwa that forbids Muslims from going through body scanners at airports. According to the FCNA:
[A] general and public use of such scanners is against the teachings of Islam, natural law and all religions and cultures that stand for decency and modesty. It is a violation of clear Islamic teachings that men or women be seen naked by other men and women. Islam highly emphasizes 'haya' (modesty) and considers it part of faith. The Qur’an has commanded the believers, both men and women, to cover their private parts.
Rather than the scanners now being installed, FCNA recommends:
that instead of producing and displaying a picture of the body, software should be designed to produce only the picture of questionable materials on an outline of the body. Further, other technologies could be used that detect the presence of explosives without infringing on modesty as some European leaders have pointed out. FCNA appreciates the alternate provision of pat-down search (when needed) and therefore recommend to Muslims to avail this option over the nude body scanners.
As reported by the Detroit Free Press:
The decision could complicate efforts to intensify screening of potential terrorists who are Muslim. After the Christmas Day bombing attempt in Detroit by a Muslim suspect from Nigeria, some have called for the use of body scanners at airports to find explosives and other dangerous materials carried by terrorists. Some airports are now in the process of buying and using the body scanners, which show in graphic detail the outlines of a person’s body.

From the March 3rd Times (London):
A Muslim woman was barred from boarding a flight after she refused to undergo a full body scan for religious reasons.

The passenger was passing through security at Manchester Airport when she was selected at random for a full-body scanner.
(via The Corner)


MaxedOutMama said...

Well, a pat-down search of a person's crotch and boob area (I suppose it is only a matter of time until we have exploding busts) is going to be even more intrusive.

Seriously, suppose you are a TSA person looking for a crotch bomber. The only way to detect that sort of thing is to grope the guy pretty thoroughly. You are literally going to be squeezing the guy's crotch and feeling up the inner thighs.

I can't say that the prospect of having some grotty TSA person squeeze my boobs is a more modest alternative. I cringe at the thought of the body scanners, but the body search is even worse. I think I'll be driving!

Carl said...

M_O_M: You've expressed exactly my thought -- and the reason for this post. How is the pat-down alternative supposed to help?

MaxedOutMama said...

Carl, I think the average person is going to include that this is an attempt to subvert the entire security scheme. Think of the lawsuits!

And man, they'll have to pay those TSA people more. Would you want to take a job that requires you to grab men's crotches?

However it might not be an attempt to subvert the scheme. These people can be hilariously literal. A case in point was the Egyptian imam who suggested to a female office worker that she let a male coworker suck on her breasts so that it would be okay to work with him alone in the office.

OBloodyHell said...

> Would you want to take a job that requires you to grab men's crotches?

"Heaven for misandrist bitch-dykes and flaming gays".

As far as the thread topic...

If the scanners make fewer Muslims fly, then it will only make the ones who do, and thus the likely terrorists, stand out even more.

You got a problem with that?

Assistant Village Idiot said...

I'll be visiting Camp Lejeune and then Williamsburg and not commenting for the next ten days. I might wander online sometimes, but mostly I'm going to read actual books, just like the old days.

Nothing personal.

Marc said...

Here's the obvious solution:

Carl said...

Marc: Yuk!