Friday, April 11, 2008

social injustice 2

I don't mean to be irreverent here, but one of the most wide-spread consequences of 9/11 is the security lines at airports. I don't disagree with the raised caution airports have taken; I think they're completely necessary. But no one likes to wait an hour, only to completely undress at the end, in front of security guards, whose job is to be skeptical of your patriotism. The blow to the self-esteem is compounded by the random search. It's already uncomfortable to undress in front of a crowd, but it's even more uncomfortable to undress in front of one individual; not to mention the hassle and inconvenience of possibly being late to your flight. And if you're running late, you'll probably show your anxiety in the security line with jittery mannerisms, and your constant checking of pockets, cell phones, and watches. If I was a guard, I'd definitely pick the guy who's sweating and constantly checking his watch for the "random search" rather than the calm average joe. Random searches are certainly good precautions, and I don't think they shouldn't be administered; however, the 21st century has become the century of airport-dread, something that, I think, can be addressed.

As a child, I never understood how others dreaded the dentist, especially the adults. I always loved the dentist, and would always choose a dentist appointment over school, if given the choice. Now, I sing quite a different tune. I hate it. Why the change?
Maybe dentists are more aggressive in their work towards adults. Maybe if the gaping mouth at their disposal is 30 years old rather than 9, they'll go for that extra piece of plaque behind that molar.
But I think it was the prize chest that changed everything. My Dentist would have a chest of toys and trinkets that I got to choose from once my teeth were cleaned. Obviously, there were those useless orange plastic fish all over the place, but if you dug deep enough, you might find a mini-plinko or a squirt gun.

Here's my idea: give those chosen for random searches a chest of prizes to choose from. The chest might need to be updated for adults. Instead of a chest of plastic fish, maybe a chest of candy, and not the "fun size" bars, the real ones. Maybe a table of magazines they can choose from: MacLife, the Economist, US Weekly, etc. Maybe a little gift certificate to be used at the food court. Maybe even a thumb drive (hey, welcome to the 21st century; and those things are a dime a dozen nowadays anyway).
Think about it; the security lines of anxiety will be replaced by lines of excited people raising their hands to be searched. The whole experience will change. Airports will no longer be dreaded, and Americans will be happier. The power of the prize chest.


I've never seen a commercial that made me so happy. Truly Totoro-esque (you can quote me on that).

1 comment:

Greg said...

I say we pitch this idea to the folks in Norfolk.

Come on, "Take ORF"??