MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Former Gov. Jesse Ventura’s lawsuit against the TSA and Homeland Security over pat downs at the airport is prompting a lot of reaction.
Ventura, like many Americans, has metal in his body from an operation. The former governor had his hip replaced two years ago.
In his lawsuit, he said because of his hip replacement, he always sets off metal detectors and that results in him having to get the new, more invasive pat downs at the airport.
Ventura said the searches amount to an unconstitutional search and they are an invasion of privacy.
This is not the first time that the governor has voiced criticism and opposition to the practices of Homeland Security.
While Ventura is a legendary tough guy, but he has shown a sensitivity to the practices of Homeland Security. Last fall, he told a radio host that the agency should be compared to Hitler’s feared police.
“They’re supposed to be there for our protection. I am now viewing them as the Gestapo,” he said to radio host Alex Jones.
Ventura also said he would not go into one of the body scanners.
“I won’t go through them. I would rather be handscanned,” Ventura said.
But in a new lawsuit, Ventura said the TSA’s new, more invasive hand pat downs involve “offensive touching, gripping and rubbing of the genital and other sensitive areas.”
That meets the “definition for an unlawful sexual assault.” Ventura is, of course, not alone in having surgery that has left him with metal in his body. Judy Savoie, 63, knows where Ventura is coming from, but that doesn’t mean she’s in support of his lawsuit.
“I have a drug-infused pump in my abdomen and I have a replaced knee and I have a metal plate in my ankle,” Savoie said, adding that Ventura’s suit is ridiculous. “When you have these things implanted, you get a card that shows you have this metal implanted in you and all I do is show the card.”
The TSA, on its website, does advise people with medical implants to carry medical cards and talk to screeners about their condition.
But also on its website, the TSA makes it very clear that having one of those medical cards and having an implant does not let you bypass security.
Instead it allows you to avoid the body scanner machine and go directly to the full body pat down.