By now, pretty much everybody on the Web seems to have read Nicholas Monahan's account of mistreatment at the hands of the Portland International Airport security team, published on LewRockwell.com last month under the title "Coffee, Tea, or Should We Feel Your Pregnant Wife's Breasts Before Throwing You in a Cell at the Airport and Then Lying About Why We Put You There?" For an ineffable followup, read Steve Duin's column in yesterday's Oregonian—an article remarkable not for adding any new facts to the story, but for the attitude its author brings to the subject.
A sample: "If Monahan was randomly searched and his wife's privacy violated, noted Bob Applegate, the senior manager for government and media relations at the Port, 'That happens to thousands of people a day at Portland International Airport. Thousands of people go through the same process every day and don't get upset enough to get arrested.'"
America, I submit, can be divided into two types of people: those who could write such a paragraph with a straight face, and those who couldn't.
By the way, my girlfriend's sister had a coat stolen while she was passing through airport security in Montreal last week. The crook waited until she was busy removing her shoes for the guard, then made off with the jacket without any of the air cops noticing. Thanks partly to sustained effort and partly to dumb luck, she managed to recover the coat, but not everyone was so fortunate: Another passenger lost his wallet the same way, in the same line. It never turned up.
Fills you with confidence, don't it?