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Living the CES security farce

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols | Jan. 14, 2016
The new ‘enhanced’ security promised for CES turned out to be a joke, but the illusion of safety provided by security theater really fell away on the way home.

Maybe you don’t agree that what CES promised to deliver — but bungled badly — only amounts to security theater anyway. And maybe you believe that the TSA’s no-shoes, no-water-bottle rules are legitimate ways to address real threats. Well, I think even someone who buys in to all of that would change their mind if they had been with all of us CES attendees at Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport as we all headed back home.

The lines were horrible, early on Friday morning. Even though I was two hours early, I began to doubt I’d make my flight. Then the line sped up to the point where we were almost trotting.

What had changed? TSA threw out its security protocols.

We were told to leave all the items we normally must take out — laptops and travel-sized hygiene bottles — in our bags. We were told to put our wallets, smartphones and other such items in our luggage. Shoes? Belts? Keep them on!

And off we dashed, most security restrictions tossed out the window for the sake of speed. The farce that is security in the United States was revealed for all to see.

Oh, I made my flight. And there were no terrorism attacks that day.


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