Should the TSA Trust in Full-Body Scanners?

Can body-scanning technology protect the country from terrorists?

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The Heritage Foundation's James Jay Carafano recently argued that scanners will help stop terrorists, while FlyersRights.org's Kate Hanni wrote that they won't work. A sampling of your thoughts:

There is no detection method that should be barred from use based on invasion of privacy, as long as the method is not physically harmful and is not publicly humiliating. Any safe, effective, discreet means of detection should be legal for use to protect public transportation facilities and the people there. Just as using such things as software carries implicit agreement to terms of use, travelers using public services must implicitly agree to the methods used to keep them safe or choose another means of travel.
PERRY C. TRUITT Plainwell, Mich.

I will feel much safer once we stop the ludicrous process of ineffective screening of all passengers and crew and get back the effective practice of profiling. We need fewer but more-skilled screeners to do this job. We need legislative and judicial support to fend off the American Civil Liberties Union and others who value all individual freedoms at the cost of collective security in this challenging time. Not trusting anyone means no one is free and enjoying the basic rights of our Constitution. Right now, we're doing a good job of discouraging air travel and destroying the airlines while wasting a lot of money in an attempt to make one size fit all.
JOSEPH SONGIN Scottsville, N.Y.

We do everything but talk with the "enemy" in trying to protect ourselves from terrorism. Think of the enormous amounts of money that go to national defense, homeland security, nation building, and foreign aid designed to achieve the cooperation of other countries. Think of the lives of our young lost abroad in the fight and the lives of innocents lost at the scene. And these costs keep spiraling as the war on terrorism adds new fronts. What really has been achieved in all these years, and when will an end to it all come? I say it's time to re-inspect our foreign policy and to engage the enemy in discussions with us, allies, and terrorism's host nations. Open the discussions to the press so the public around the world can know the grievances, know the solutions, know the truth. Just maybe, a better foreign policy will be found in that process.
RON W. SMITH Providence, Utah

If the "panty scanners" cost "only" $76 mil­lion for 300, then I say go ahead and add this small increment of security. Each new safety augmentation does result in additional peace of mind for travelers, even if the total will never foil all bombing attempts. The more interesting question is why we feel that the extremely low dangers of flying, compared with automobile travel, aren't good enough. There is no logical end to the "How safe is safe enough?" question.
TOM KARASEK Longview, Wash.