What's Worth Dying for, If Not More Convenient Air Travel?

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The right to noninvasive and convenient air travel isn't explicitly protected by the Constitution, but Georgia congressional candidate Bob Johnson thinks the TSA is violating our rights and turning us into sheeple. Give him the right to keep his shoes on or give him death!

Johnson, a Republican running for Rep. Jack Kingston's open seat, said he'd take death over the loss of his airport liberty. “Now this is going to sound outrageous, I’d rather see another terrorist attack, truly I would, than to give up my liberty as an American citizen,” he said, according to Politico. “Give me liberty or give me death. Isn’t that what Patrick Henry said at the founding of our republic?” Johnson argued that the TSA has been “indoctrinating generations of Americans to walk through a line and be prodded and probed by uniform personnel, agents of the government, like sheep.” 

Confiscated weapons. Via TSA.

Some would argue that the TSA, despite its shortcomings, acts in the best interests of passengers by screening for things like loaded guns, giant hunting knives and other lethal weapons people try to bring on to planes. But Georgia is a proud state — last month the legislature passed a law that, among other things, decriminalized the possession of a gun in an airport security line, as long as you leave peacefully when asked. 

For many of us, taking off your shoes is very inconvenient, but it's preferable to a terrorist attack. Even Johnson had to agree. “In the heat of the moment, while making the point that I would much rather fight the enemy than our federal government, I said something stupid and should have chosen my words more carefully,” Johnson said in a statement to Politico. Even Henry might give a patriot a pass on this one. Given the choice between death and airport security, he would have just chosen an alternative form of transportation.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.