, April 24, 2024

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Airport Security Scandal: Systemic Issues, Not Individual Misdeeds

  •   3 min reads
Airport Security Scandal: Systemic Issues, Not Individual Misdeeds
By Vincent  R. Pozon

Time short, tensions high, she turned so her back was to the public but did not realize she would be facing the gaze of the CCTV camera. She forced the tightly rolled bills into her mouth, much like a seagull grappling with a fish too substantial to swallow. Dry, as bills are, they must have been spiky against her tongue. Eschewing the act of chewing, she pushed it down her throat repeatedly with her finger.

A bottle of water was handed to her by an accomplice to help her wolf them down. That it is even acceptable to the mind as a means of hiding the purloined baffles. The currency, undoubtedly teeming with germs, journeyed from wallet to mouth, throat, esophagus, stomach; the equivalent of seventeen thousand pesos disappeared, all in the name of erasing the evidence.

She, along with others, stands accused, tarnishing the country's reputation, or, to be more precise, confirming what the world already knows about our points of entry and the agencies governing them, the image of her ingesting dollar bills now forever etched in internet and public memory. It's fresh blood on a uniform already bloodied by past transgressions.

The incident has become fodder for the media, with politicians giddy with the opportunity to be vocal and visible, exploiting a bizarre episode involving the swallowing of paper representation of the means to put food on the table.

What is it about our ports of entry?

Why are they unmanageable? "Based on OTS administrator Mao Aplasca’s statement, cases of theft at the security inspection points are common but they hardly prosper since the complainants—passengers leaving on flights—are no longer around to pursue the case." - Inquirer

Here's a thought for the authorities: Airports are funnels, and people with money, hard-earned or inherited, or with articles that have to be physically transported, all pass through these narrow pipes. Vultures, be they individual or organized, flock about.

It's not a question of individual integrity; it's a systemic challenge.

Circumstances have pushed us to a point where corruption is seen as a viable and even acceptable means of supplementing one's income. Relying on ordinary individuals to be guardians, even when their duty is guardianship, eventually fails. When they assigned the Special Action Forces to the National Penitentiary, corruption still lingered, still persisted. Instead of fixating on the woman who swallowed dollars, I suggest we try to discover a holistic solution, maybe an engineering redesign to address this challenge.

I have an expression for this kind of issue in advertising: 'It's just a layout problem.'  The message can be good, valid, and well-crafted, yet not sell. There's a 'flaw in the flow,' in the design, impeding comprehension and clarity.

The healthcare system of Canada comes to mind. When asked in a US Senate hearing about the time people have to wait for medical procedures and tests, Danielle Martin, a physician and health policy professor from Toronto, explained that the challenge of wait times could, in fact, be solved by addressing how the system is accessed, perhaps by utilizing 'single common wait lists' rather than multiple queues.

Basically a "layout problem". Watch the video below.

Canadian Doctor Totally Owns U.S. Senator on Single-Payer Heal...

Watch this Canadian doctor own a GOP senator on health care

Posted by NowThis Politics on Thursday, 3 August 2017

Perhaps by implementing more sophisticated queue management systems, we can optimize the flow of passengers, reducing congestion and creating a considerably more challenging environment for potential thieves to exploit. Congress could look into the legal framework that currently requires passenger presence or involvement for a complaint to prosper. Additionally, we could empower the passengers with public reporting apps so they can report incidents or express concerns about security personnel anonymously.

Simply stated, the bill swallower may be top-of-mind and a more striking symbol of the problem of theft and corruption in the eyes of the public, but we should shift our focus from individual actions to systemic enhancements and technological innovations that can transform the security landscape at our ports of entry.


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