Mailbag: TSA is inadequate, but I'll keep flying

Mr. Gray is absolutely correct when he says the TSA has stepped over the line and why don't they "privatize security screening" ("It's A Gray Area: Are TSA procedures really making us safer?" Dec. 12). He continues that if each airline were to adopt its own appropriate procedures, each would probably use those that are used by El-Al.

But the problem is that in the United States, the people the TSA trains probably don't even have a high school education or, at most, a GED. I know this is blatantly not politically correct, but I would like to know how long the training period is, where they get the people they train, and if they ever fail anyone.

The even greater problem is that unlike Israel, which has faced terrorism every day since its independence, we are entering an unknown field. This is our first experience, and we are impatient to present to the public a sense of security.

Do I personally feel safer jumping through all these hoops that TSA has mandated? Indeed not.

But as a dedicated traveler and who wants to continue to experience new adventures, I will not stop flying. I will put up with all the false senses of security, the long lines, the 3-1-1, taking off shoes, etc., and hope that eventually they will come up with a solution and professionally trained personnel, not just a bunch of people on a power trip.

Rhoda Friedman

Newport Beach

Improve medical care in jail

I read in the Daily Pilot that a second man, from just the city of Costa Mesa, died in the men's Sheriff's Department holding area in 2010. Both men were under 40.

Just because someone dies of a medical problem and hasn't been physically assaulted by the staff, doesn't mean all is well at the jail. I understand that the O.C. jails have almost the worst safety record in the state.

Please, let's work together to change that. You have to understand the difference between a sick person, and a "bad" person and clearly the Sheriff's Department needs help.

Dr. Julie Ralls

Newport Beach

Too many cell phones, texting while driving

Chris Epting's recent column on driving and cell phone use was no less than fantastic, real and downright scary. For whatever reason, or reasons, I personally have been witnessing an incredible proliferation of the number of people either texting or talking on their cell phones while driving a car.

The column states that the evidence is still continuing to increase to support the notion that texting and cell phone use is at least as dangerous as driving drunk. Epting suggests that the law come down especially hard on these law-breakers by citing more tickets, increasing the fines and posting the conviction results on Facebook.

I am of the opinion that while these stringent deterrents may work at first, the long-term goals of ridding our roads of these non-caring individuals will not be attained. These intentionally law-breaking people are aware of the current laws that clearly prohibit the use of cell phones while driving. Yet, they not only continue to do it, but do it rather openly and brazenly with no apparent guilt or remorse as evidenced by their refusing even to attempt to hide their actions.

Bill Spitalnick

Newport Beach

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