Submitted Comments

87. From L. B, Houston, Texas, 19 October 2004, 12:18:40 AM PST

I believe that the "Secure Flight" program is simply an Orwellian monitorring program. The people whose air travel records of June, 2004, which were released to the government did not give their consent to the release of such records. What is worse, they were not even informed that their air travel records were released. Since CAPPS-II has been cancelled, the government is simply proposing another Big Government monitorring program and renaming it the "Secure Flight" program.
This program is not only repressive, but many people may be falsely identified as terrorists on government lists. There are also no procedures available to correct such faulty data. This could result in innocent people being falsely and unfairly labelled as terrorists.
People also have a 4th Amendment right to privacy. The government has no business snooping into peoples' private records, unless it can clearly prove that they are involved in wrongdoing. Such records that the government may be monitorring might involve peoples' exercise of their First Amendment rights, such as magazine subscriptions, book purchases, membership fees, etc. There is a danger that the government could use information in the proposed list to harass peaceful people who hold dissident views.
Such government monitorring has historically been more common under authoritarian regimes. Investigating people before they travel is similar to what has been done under totalitarian regimes, such as Nazi Germany or Communist China. Since governments have killed millions of innocent people, such as in Nazi concentration camps and Soviet gulags, government monitorring programs are very dangerous.

85. 18 October 2004, 10:08:44 PM PST

Ever heard that statement made by kids who want to do whatever they feel like... "It's a free country!" Well, if this gets passed, it won't be.

The government does NOT have the right to know where I go, when, and why. We need our right to privacy if we don't want to turn into Orwell's 1984. Screen the cargo; fine. Train the workers better. (And have more people watching them, or let them screen in front of the luggage owner, to prevent theft.) But don't keep a record of my traveling. I, and most other Americans, am not a terrorist nor am I a threat to the country. It is unfair to keep records on all of us.

We are supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, and yet right now the government seems to be arresting everyone, with extremely little or no evidence, and letting the courts sort them out later. I think that as this problem grows, people will fly less for fear of being arrested for no reason, and the airlines will only suffer more. What happened on 9/11/2001 was a great and horrible tragedy, but we can't let it turn us into a nation based on paranoia. Don't let those terrorists take away our rights to privacy.

83. From Arthur A, Mountain View, CA, 18 October 2004, 08:49:18 PM PST

We've seen how effective screening lists are in the recent pasts: Yosef Islam, aka Cat Stevens, is detected on a place after he has boarded and while the flight is over the Atlantic (while he is on a list I don't understand); people with common names discover they can't fly because their names are similar to those of suspected security risks and have no easy way to petition to have their names cleared; and those who do end up on these "do not fly" lists (including several members of the U.S. Congress) have discovered they can bypass the added security by changing the way their names appear on their ticket purchase (by adding an initial for example).

This administration's record on flight security leaves something to be desired. I'm against Soviet-style internal travel controls in the United States. I object to the "Secure Flights" system and do not want to see it implemented.

I don't appreciate that the TSA has made it so difficult to comment on this issue.

82. From J L, Lockport, IL, 18 October 2004, 08:39:18 PM PST

You don't have my permission to turn over data about me.

81. From Paul W, Charlotte, Nc, 18 October 2004, 08:31:59 PM PST

No one who flew in June of 2004 gave their permission for that information to be turned-over to the government. This appears to be an illegal data dump as no Privacy Act notice was given. If this is the way you disrespect a United States Citizen's privacy, what's next? Tattooing of I.D. numbers on our arms? Or better yet, the master data base of every living person's fingerprint? By the way, did you bother to fingerprint all people who DON'T live in the U.S.?

80. From Barry W, Overland Park, Kansas, 18 October 2004, 08:20:58 PM PST

As a DBA and a Data Analyst I have to comment on how foolhard such a massive undertaking Secureflight is. Even if we set aside privacy issues, and ignore how all of America used to make fun of the USSR for these same tatics, such data mining is foolhardy at best. If it were to be properly run it would have to be administered and all data provided by our Intelligence agencies. Then how to properly deseminated this information to the appropriate companies without divulging Secret information. All in all this is a foolhardy waste of taxpayers money and a move forward to bigger Government.

79. 18 October 2004, 06:41:42 PM PST

Secure Flight. Is this akin to realising Yousef Islam (aka Cat Stevens!, for you folks at the TSA), a name on one of your terrorist watch lists, boarded a flight. Then that flight took off and in mid-air someone decided to notice that maybe a terrorist was on board. No, just another law abiding citizen of the free world.
Or, how about Senator Kennedy being denied boarding because his name appears on a watch list. Even *he* found it nearly impossible to get his name removed from the watch list, despite direct calls to the DHS director's office. How can you expect ordinary people to deal with this kind of issue? You don't provide redress for passengers to correct errors made on your behalf.
It is a catastrophe that this system and systems like it are allowed to exist in what is supposed to be a free society that prides itself on liberty.

78. 18 October 2004, 06:02:21 PM PST

Hello. The "Secure Flight" initiative should be stopped. As someone who flew in June 2004 I did not give my permission to anyone, including the government, to use my personal data for a test. The system itself, beyond just the testing, needs serious reconsideration to address problems like how someone might clear their name if they are inappropriately listed as a terrorist, and whether preventing interstate travel is even a right granted to the executive branch. A system which adequately addresses these concerns in an open manner would truly give terrorists something to fear, but unfortunately the system as designed will do nothing except hassle the tax payers who fund it.

77. From Jesse C, Butte, MT, 18 October 2004, 05:14:58 PM PST

I oppose the "Secure Flight" program and the transfer of the travel records of American citizens to the Federal Government. First of all, if passengers are truly being screened effectively, then there should be no reason that anyone should not be able to fly, even a terrorist...because they should not be able to smuggle a weapon on board to influence a flight. Secondly, the terrorist threat is easily consists of islamic fundamentalists from other countries. The money and database this program would require would be better spent securing our borders and deporting known illegal aliens.

As an American citizen, I oppose the creation of this internal travel passport system.

76. From Thomas G, Miami Beach, FL, 18 October 2004, 04:18:38 PM PST

Stop fascism! By the time you give away all of our civil rights, then there will be nothing left to defend you bunch of fascist reactionaries! Then the terrorists will have won you bunch of Right wing A-holes...

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