Requiring the TSA to follow the formal rule-making procedure is important, because one of the essential steps in that process is the solicitation of public feedback. American travelers will have the opportunity to voice their concerns about the TSA’s policy, and the agency will be required to respond to those concerns. Given that so many of the TSA’s policies are shrouded in secrecy, forcing the TSA to explain its policies will be a much-needed source of transparency. And if the rationale for using the machines is as flimsy as some critics charge, perhaps the exercise will cause the agency to re-consider the decision to use them.
I’d argue it’s also important because they were given a court order. If government agencies can simply ignore the Judicial Branch of the government, that’s the end of everything, folks. Game over. We’re living in a totalitarian state.
At least give us the illusion that we still have some control over what our government subjects us to, here. Play along for show. That’s what the TSA is best at, anyway, right?
What’s the worst that can happen? A bunch of lefty liberals write their objections in the formal procedure, and you ignore them and do what you want, anyway. No harm done, and it won’t even generate much bad press, because most Americans are too scared of their own shadow to think rationally about what does and doesn’t make them safer.
The fact that The TSA has simply ignored the order all this time demonstrates a level of arrogance that, frankly, is very frightening. If they don’t even have to pretend to follow the rule of law, what will they do next?