TSA Pre-check / by kevin murray

I've heard of TSA Pre-check (TSA Pre), but never separately applied for it, because I don't feel the urgency in paying any additional money to some government agency for the privilege or flying, nor do I feel like divulging additional private information about myself, or getting all my fingers fingerprinted.  Basically, TSA Pre allows certain preapproved passengers to have the privilege of not having to taking off their shoes, belts, or laptops, and to be in a shorter and more efficient line in which essentially you walk in with what you have on and you walk out the same way, only the lines are significantly shorter, the process is significantly shorter, and your dignity is left intact.  That in itself makes it worth considering.


So since I have never applied for TSA Pre, I was surprised to see on a recent flight that I was TSA Pre certified.  Honestly, I didn't complain to myself, I was actually pretty darn happy about it.  Yes, the lines were short; in fact the whole process took easily less than 5 minutes for me to first get into the line and then to walk out with my backpack.  It would have been even faster, except the couple in front of me, didn't seem to understand exactly what they could or couldn't wear.  My overall grade for the experience would be an "A", and I would be delighted to get TSA Pre approved on future flights, still I absolutely have no intention of separating applying for this flyer designation.


I do, however, have problems with TSA Pre which I will briefly outline.  The first issue is that I really do believe that flying should be "one size fits all", I absolutely despise most TSA agents who I find too often to be non-engaging, not professional, uncaring, and asleep at the wheel, in which my feeling is that if I have to suffer, I want everyone else to suffer the exact same way.  Only if we all endure the indignity of a government bureaucracy and staffing which is essentially worthless in protecting our airplanes and passengers, will we all collectively be able to rise up to change it to something sensible.


The second issue follows closely behind the first, which is, what the government is doing in conjunction with private enterprise, is dividing airline passengers into two groups: those that are "in" and those that are "not".  If you are not part of the "in" group, which includes important business passengers that resent their time being wasted, or good citizens who feel that they have paid their dues and their taxes, than you just feel wronged to have to be treated as if you are just a commoner.  Obviously, if you keep that class of citizens happy by allowing them to circumvent the system by being TSA Pre, than they won't give a damn, how the rest of the public is treated.


So essentially TSA Pre is just another way of separating the wheat from the chaff, we all want to be that wheat, but the fact of the matter is the game is rigged, so that certain people will always be that wheat and others will always be that chaff.  They will tell you that it's fair, but it's not.