Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Personal Freedom

We don't give up our personal freedoms or our values when we choose to fly by plane.

That may sound like common sense to you and me—but for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), it's up for debate.

In recent weeks, the TSA has subjected everyone born in—or just passing through—14 different countries to intense, personal airport screenings. They call it "national profiling," but it's really just racial profiling—a dangerous policy that violates our rights and diverts resources away from real threats.

No government official should have the power to target and harass you just for being born in or flying from a certain country.

Stand with the ACLU in calling on Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to rein in the TSA and reject the policy of racial profiling.

The TSA is responsible for protecting us when we travel. But that shouldn't give them carte blanche to abuse and mistreat us for the language we speak or the country in which we were born.

Instead of profiling, we should focus on targeted investigations based on evidence and individualized suspicion. A person's behavior, rather than his or her ethnic or religious background, is a better indicator of criminal or terrorist activity and is more in line with closely held American values of fairness and justice.

This overbroad policy of racial profiling not only violates our rights and values, it also wastes valuable resources and diverts attention from real threats. Please speak out now against these abuses of power that make us less safe—and less free.

Tell Secretary Napolitano to end this misguided and wasteful policy.

Let's win this fight,