Yesterday was a big travel day for Americans, and the organizers of National Opt-Out Day
hoped to use it to highlight widespread, though not universal, dissatisfaction with stepped-up screening measures in US airports, by encouraging people selected for body screening to insist instead on the pat-down alternative. Reader Willtor writes with a story in the New York Times on the effect of the protest: "'39 people had opted out of the body scans in Atlanta by 5 p.m. In Los Angeles, 113 had. One had opted out in Charlotte, N.C. Boston seemed to have something of a mini-spike, with 300.' This is a tiny fraction of passengers, of course. But when I flew out of Boston this afternoon, they had opened a line that led to a traditional metal detector. When I flew out in June all lines went to the nudie scanners. Is it safe to be optimistic that we have been heard and policies have changed? I am not particularly concerned whether we get credit or whether it is reported that the protest fizzled. But it would be nice to know that some of the more invasive theatrics have become optional."
According to its organizers, meanwhile, the opt-out protest was a "rousing success." If you traveled yesterday by air, what was your impression?