Senate No-Fly Lists - Grounded in Reality?

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Lowbacca_1977, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    The No-Fly list has gotten some renown both as an attempt to keep terrorists off of planes, and its ability to target people who are clearly not terrorists, to absurd levels like infants. Additionally, people aren't told when they're on the list until they try to fly, and they aren't told why they're on the list or how to clear their names. This has already led to lawsuits from American citizens who are prohibited from flying, including some that first found this out when trying to return to the US from other countries and being denied the ability to return home. 4 of the plaintiffs the ACLU represented were even US veterans (2 marines, 1 army, 1 air force). When the court was petitioned to let them return home, the US gov't allowed each to return to the US without ever disclosing why they were on the No-Fly lists to begin with.

    More recently, Al-Jazeera has run an opinion piece that looks at the No-Fly list in a greater policy, not just keeping people off of planes, but functioning as a tool to exile people, including some that are American citizens. In these cases, the government doesn't have to prove their case, they just are listing people without any requirement to disclose the evidence that leads to someone being on these lists, let alone proving that that evidence is substantial and should keep them from being allowed to fly. Additionally, for many of the people on these lists, who very often are directly from, or at least have family living in predominantly Muslim countries, being placed on the No-Fly lists keep them stuck in these countries when they return to visit family. They are then prevented from boarding a plane to return to the US, and without having had any case made against them or being told how to get removed from the list, they're effectively exiled.

    So, are these no-fly lists actually a necessary thing for the government to have? Additionally, should the government be allowed to keep this list in private, or should there be mandatory transparency, not just of who is on the list, but also why they are on the list and if that is justified?
  2. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    At the most basic level, it's absurd that the reason why someone is on the list isn't revealed, not even to the person him or herself. I mean, let's start there as it's the most obviously ridiculous element here.
    NYCitygurl and Summer Dreamer like this.
  3. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    why are people surprised that the government wants things to have no transparency. They've been keeping things from the public forever.

    can you imagine being a U.S. citizen and having all your constitutional rights taken away from you without as much as an explanation.

    oh wait, that's what the patriot act has done to every American citizen anyway.
    SithLordDarthRichie likes this.
  4. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
    star 6
    I'm not surprised by it. That doesn't mean I'm perfectly alright with it, or think that it should be unquestioningly accepted in the name of preserving national security.
  5. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    and id have to agree with you... I feel the exact same way.
  6. Alpha-Red Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 25, 2004
    star 5
    What I'm surprised by is why this hasn't been fixed yet. We've known about this for ages.
  7. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    NSA just got another extension to continue warrantless wiretapping. Not really a surprise this hasn't gotten a "fix" yet, either. :p

    Anyway, I can see why they don't tell people how to get off it-if they really are terrorists, then you don't want them on airplanes, obviously-but it's a badly implemented system, IMO. I mean, seriously, if somebody on a watch list is at an airport, arrest them. Don't be all passive-aggressive with random people and not give them any reason as to why they can't get on the plane.
  8. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    It's a sad truth that once the government accrues power, it has no real motivation to ever give it up.
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  9. Darth-Lando Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    My mom's name somehow wound up on the No-Fly list about 10 years ago. She has a very Irish name so we assumed it was someone in the IRA with the same name. It never prevented her from flying but it caused a few delays and she always wound up getting the extra security screening. It eventually got worked out and she doesn't get hassled anymore but it used to be quite the annoyance for her to fly.
  10. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    I don't personally feel that people should be wrongly accused based on their looks, but when im at the airport and I see a 5 foot Korean woman being pulled off line for political correctness I cant help but laugh...

    Sorry pull the guy off line with the beard and the head wrap. The 2 year old Mexican kid isn't a plane bomber and doesn't need to have his anal cavity searched.

    When Mexicans start blowing up planes than ill be all for it, until than some common sense doesn't hurt. This goes for any nationality...
  11. Lowbacca_1977 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2006
    star 6
    How is what you just said NOT accusing people based on their looks? You just said that you don't feel people should be wrongly accused, right before you said people should be wrongly accused based on how they look.

    I think a better question is if that level of security is doing anything useful. I've not seen any evidence that it does enough to justify the whole rigmarole involved in flying now.
    DarthBoba likes this.
  12. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    because its less ridiculous to pull a middle eastern person off line than a 2 year old Mexican kid in a carriage, or a 60 year old Korean woman...

    put it into its context.

    and id agree with your second part of your post.
  13. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    How is it that we as an alleged advanced technological civilization do not yet appear to have mastered the concept that people are not assigned unique names?
    Last edited by Arawn_Fenn, Feb 14, 2013
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  14. Valairy Scot Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    And what if a "genuine terrorist" asked some "normal non-terrorist" to carry a bag on a plane for them or slipped something in the coat pocket?

    What if a terrorist organization targets so-called "normal non-terrorists" who are suicidal, gullible, disaffected, whatever and has them act as their "agent of destruction"?
  15. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    ya that doesn't happen though.

    no one has ever slipped something into someones pocket without notice that could blow up a plane. Lets be realistic here.

    I just think the airports are ridiculous now
  16. Darth-Lando Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    Yeah no, this isn't true at all. I had a great-aunt and uncle along with four of their children on Cathay Pacific Airways Flight 700Z in 1972. A Thai police officer is believed to have hidden a bomb in his daughter's suitcase to kill her and her fiance. It also killed the other 79 people on board. [face_plain]
    This was 9 years before I was born, so I didn't know them obviously but yes, it indeed does happen. This is also far from the only example. It happens a lot less nowadays because of increased airport security. Airlines have only just recently stopped asking if anyone else has has handled your luggage when you check in.
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  17. LandoThe CapeCalrissian Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 2012
    star 3
    hiding something in someones suit case is much more believable than someone putting something in a persons pocket without them noticing.


    that's what I was speaking directly on..

    and I was being sarcastic about my earlier post, its just funny that an 80 yr old Korean woman would get pulled off line for political correctness..
  18. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    Yeah, cause you know a bomber with half a brain is totally gonna screw that question up.