Unsafe Security

Friday, September 21, 2012

Harvey Molotch, professor of sociology and metropolitan studies at New York University and the author of Against Security: How We Go Wrong at Airports, Subways, and Other Sites of Ambiguous Danger, argues many of our post-9/11 security precautions make us less safe.


Harvey Molotch

Comments [17]

Peter from Manhattan

An important topic, but the conflation with class issues seems like a distraction. For a thorough critique of airport security that stays on topic, check out "Beyond Fear" by Bruce Schneier.

Sep. 21 2012 04:38 PM
Lori from New Jersey

@markg: it is because everything on Brian's show seems to head in that direction eventually. I miss the pre Occupy Wall Street BL Show. I too care about social justice but to hear it woven into every topic feels a little too liberal version of Fox News for me. I can do my own thinking, thank you. I still think Brian is brilliant but is so fixated these days that it is irritating. Sigh...

Sep. 21 2012 12:19 PM
Angelina from Bronx

This past spring I saw an abandoned Duane Reade shopping bag leaning against a metrocard machine at 59th & Lexington station. Not only was there no station attendant or token booth clerk, there was no token booth. It had been removed as have many others. My train pulled into the station and I continued on my way without reporting anything. So who exactly does the MTA expect me to "say something" to???

Sep. 21 2012 12:09 PM
thatgirl from manhattan

No thank you to the unisex bathrooms. The seats would never be lowered, and we'd be forever walking through puddles on the floor.

And safer for women? What are you smoking?

Sep. 21 2012 12:08 PM
Ruth from Brooklyn

My daughter's snow globe was confiscated!

Sep. 21 2012 12:05 PM
Lori from New Jersey

Good topic but flimsy arguments and absurd bordering on paranoid assumptions
. A sub par segment. Plus, this guy is a snore....

And'yes, I do a fair bit of traveling (in all classes).

Sep. 21 2012 12:05 PM
thatgirl from manhattan

Nana - we wimmens carry potions that are slowly and successfully helping us to emasculate the withering white male race--at least according to Rush Limbaugh's most recent claims.

Ellen - While connecting through an unfortunately-staffed midwestern airport with a colleague in 2006, we watched as every brown-skinned man was taken off the security line and ushered away, each carrying the laptops, file folders and rolling bags we worker bees were sporting. To this day, it's still the case. Disgusting.

Feeling secure yet?

Sep. 21 2012 12:05 PM
Mark G

How did a conversation about the charade of security -- which as a very frequent traveler could have been a robust and interesting discussion -- become about class warfare, unisex bathrooms and an apparent spate of women being assaulted in public bathrooms (of which I was unaware)? As a Global Entry enrollee, I can also attest that it really isn't like the TSA program at all except in so far as it attempts to expedite frequent travelers. I think a bit more strenuous vetting might be in order.

Sep. 21 2012 12:03 PM
thatgirl from manhattan

My frail 80-year old father and his metal-fused vertebrae were taken out of his wheelchair at O'Hare yesterday, helped through the body scanner, wanded, patted down, partially disrobed and had his carry-on emptied as my mother looked on. Neither were convinced that any terror had been averted in the process. They did wonder whether employing TSA personnel for the 30-minute exercise constituted a Federal program to employ masses of people who would otherwise be jobless in a country that had not experienced a 9/11-type event.

Futility, thy name is TSA!

Sep. 21 2012 12:00 PM

Is this guy serious?? Unisex restrooms would be safer?? Personally I think subway cars should be gender segregated, with all the men shoved into the back car, or preferably riding on the outside, since they obviously have no understanding of basic manners & etiquette anymore and they can all scratch, cough, spit, and share their various germs and smells happily together.

Sep. 21 2012 11:57 AM
Ellen Ross from Upper West Side

Obvious and constant form of discrimination in airport security:

My student in a local college, born in Pakistan and living in Rockland County for many years, was kept waiting a year and a half ago in a room at Newark Airport for seven hours, his uncle waiting for him all that time--with no notice--in the parking lot on a freezing cold night. He looked around the room: all men, all young, and all Muslims.

Sep. 21 2012 11:54 AM
MichaelB from Morningside Heights

Cheap shot there Brian, unfunny, and completely off topic, and years old -- re the disgraced Minnesota congressman

Must you?

Sep. 21 2012 11:52 AM
oscar from ny

The increase of security is caused by the powers to increase their power.. You tube J.F.Kennedy speech about secrecy and he points this out..

Sep. 21 2

Sep. 21 2012 11:50 AM

seems a lot of security is just for show, to calm the people.

Sep. 21 2012 11:49 AM
nana from here

"women carry potions and lotions?" what potions I'm curious...
flying is generally a miserable experience, unless you're flying first/biz class.

Sep. 21 2012 11:49 AM
Mia from Manhattan

Can your guest tell us why the US airlines & airports can't replicate El Al-type security?

Sep. 21 2012 11:25 AM
Jeff Pappas from Dumbo

The mad fools have created a Doomsday machine by gatthering more hay thus heaping it onto the Pin hidden in the Mega Stack of their Paranoia.

Sep. 21 2012 10:42 AM

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