"Forget Fear of Flying, Fear Airport Screening." By Amy Goodman by Democracy Now! published on 2012/04/02 16:27:36 +0000 Award-winning journalist and Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman records a podcast in conjunction with her weekly column: http://www.democracynow.org/blog/category/weekly_column March 29, 2012 By Amy Goodman with Denis Moynihan There was terror in the skies this week over Texas, caused not by a terrorist but by a pilot—a Flight Standards captain, no less. JetBlue Airways Capt. Clay Osbon, flying Flight 191 from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport to Las Vegas, began moving up and down the aisle after the jet was airborne, ranting, according to several passengers, about Iraq, Israel, al-Qaida and bombs, calling on passengers to recite the Lord’s Prayer, saying that they were “all going down.” An off-duty pilot in the cabin went to the cockpit to help the co-pilot with the emergency landing, while passengers and crew subdued Osbon. Osbon, who’d been with JetBlue almost since its founding, was taken to the hospital, suspended with pay, then criminally charged with interfering with a flight crew. That’s enough to inspire a fear of flying in anyone. But just getting to your airplane these days may present a greater risk to your health than the actual flight. New airport security screening technology, primarily backscatter X-ray devices, have come under increased scrutiny, as their effectiveness is questioned amid concerns that the radiation exposure may cause cancer. Adding to health concerns are both the graphic nature of the images captured, essentially nude photos of every person passing through the machine, and the aggressive—and for some, humiliating—nature of the alternative to the scans, the “enhanced pat-down” by a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agent. To read the rest of the column, visit: http://owl.li/a1Msq For more information about Amy Goodman, visit www.democracynow.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.