This house believes that full-body scanners are worthwhile

Full-body screening at airports is a topic that became particularly relevant after the December 25, 2009 "Christmas Bomber" attempted terrorist attack, in which a Nigerian man tried to detonate an explosive device that was stitched into his under-wear on Northwest Airlines Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit. The plane made an emergency landing in Detroit without any fatalities. Yet, the ramifications of the event have been major, including a widespread effort to crack down on the potential for terrorists to carry makeshift bombs on their bodies through security checkpoints. One of the main proposals to combat this potential is full-body scanners at airports, which have already been implemented in many airports internationally. These machines essentially take an x-ray picture of a passenger; to peer under their clothing to detect any potential weapons and bombs on the body. Many believe that such a system could have easily detected the "under-wear bomber" on December 25th, 2009. In the broader fight on terrorism they are believed to have the potential to thwart future, similar terrorist attacks and save lives. Yet, opponents consider them an intrusion on the privacy of passengers because they allow screeners to view an outline of genitalia and bodily contours.


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