The other day I read an article in the Rocky Mountain News that discussed a new program for frequent travelers. Rather than get in the same two hour + security line that everybody else has to slog through, you have the option to pay $100 a year and submit your biometric data as part of a government background check. In this case, biometric data includes your fingerprints AND retinal prints.
Retinal prints? Did I just walk into a bad James Bond rip-off? I'm sorry, but we shouldn't have to pay extra money and submit to intrusive government checks just so flying is convenient. The horrors that have been visited upon travelers by the TSA should be fixed, rather than have yet another layer of cost and intrusion forced upon us.
Also in the news is Japan's move to fingerprint and photograph EVERY foreign traveler and worker as they enter the country. When my friends in Ishikawa leave and re-enter the country over the New Years holidays, they get printed and photographed, their only crime is being foreigners. Of course, the United States already does the same thing, so I suppose I should keep plenty of my ire reserved for my own government.
When did protecting travelers begin to be about treating everybody like a criminal, and making us subject to very intrustive, expensive, and time wasting procedures? It's a wonder anybody goes on vacation anymore.