Tuesday, June 21, 2011
"SAN ANTONIO (Reuters) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Monday added to state lawmakers' special session agenda a measure that would criminalize "enhanced pat-downs" by Transportation Security Administration agents at airports in the Lone Star State.
The bill died during the regular session of the Texas Legislature, which ended May 30, and the Republican governor -- who is thinking of running for president -- has been under pressure from conservatives and Tea party groups to ask lawmakers to reconsider the measure. During special sessions, the Legislature may only consider items that the governor puts on the agenda.
"I am grateful that the governor heard the calls of the people demanding that lawmakers stand up for the liberties of Texans," Wesley Strackbein, a conservative activist and founder of TSATyranny.com, told Reuters. Strackbein said he traveled to the Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans over the weekend to confront Perry on the issue.
The bill would make it a Class A misdemeanor -- punishable by up to a year in prison or a $4,000 fine -- for a TSA agent to "touch the anus, sexual organ, buttocks, or breast of another person, even through that person's clothing" for the purpose of "granting access to a building or a form of transportation."
TSA pat-downs have drawn some high-profile criticism, including from former Miss USA Susie Castillo, who said in a widely-viewed online video. that she felt "molested" by a pat-down at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport in April.
The proposed law passed the Texas House during the regular session but was pulled off the Senate floor without a vote after U.S. Attorney John Murphy circulated a letter to senators warning that TSA has the authority to prevent airplanes from taking off from Texas airports if the agency cannot certify that they are safe.
In a blog on its website, TSA pointed out that the supremacy clause of the U.S. constitution prohibits states from regulating the federal government.
"We, transportation security officers in particular, are trying to work in partnership with the traveling public to make you safe on flights," the blog says. "Work with us to provide the best possible security. That's all we ask." [Story]
Oh yeah, the Supremacy Clause. Hey, who needs a "stinkin" Supremacy Clause when you are going to be your own country, soon?
Finally, there is a fierce debate going on among some of you about who invented the cell phone. Some of you Negroes have declared that it is Dr. Henry Sampson, the brilliant African American engineer and author who became the first African American to earn a PhD in Nuclear Engineering back in the day.
Well, there is a problem, because some folks have declared that Martin Cooper, a white guy, invented the cell phone. And, sadly for some of you Negroes, they might be right. But here is the deal: It doesn't matter who really invented the cell phone, we are just glad to have it. Unfortunately certain folks in this country can't stand to see members of another tribe take (or get) credit for anything, so that "color arousal" kicks in. (Thanks again for that word Francis)
Then, as is to be expected, there is a push back. Black folks can't understand how folks in the majority have such a hard time giving them credit for anything, and they wonder why Charlie always has to "check and raise" us at every turn.
But here is the deal people; none of it matters. You have given more than enough of your blood sweat and tears for this country. Don't get caught up in this silly game of who invented what. It will take you away from focusing on what's really important: Making sure that you do what is right for you and your family, and ensuring that one day your children might be in a position to invent some things of their own.