How times Have Changed

February 15, 2012
By katie11 BRONZE, Fort Dodge, Iowa
katie11 BRONZE, Fort Dodge, Iowa
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Often times, it is pondered if American employees care about the people they are helping. This idea became evident to me when I was 13 years old when my grandma and I went on vacation to Phoenix, Arizona. It was my first time riding on an airplane, and I was a pretty nervous. We had quite a time making it through security, which brought me to thinking about how strict flight safety had become. Airport workers are so worried about keeping us ‘safe’ that they don’t even pay attention to the person they are helping.

Airplanes may seem great because they get us around the world quickly, but they are a very impersonal place anymore. When my dad was younger, he rode on an airplane to Atlanta. He told me about how he had to get to the airport fifteen minutes before the flight and hand the worker his ticket. They did not pat him down, or even have him walk through a metal detector. Compared to today, that was a walk in the park.

Security is much stronger now compared to back then. Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, we really do need to take action, but sometimes its just a little too much. My grandma and I arrived at the airport three hours early, to ensure we made it through security. Just checking in bags was a hassle. My bag was a few ounces over the weight limit, so we had to pay a fee. Due to bag being overweight, we had nearly two hours left to finish this daunting task. A relatively short amount of time for airport security.

I made it through security just fine, but for my grandma it was a different story. She had a knee replacement a few years prior to our trip, and set off the full body metal detector. She had a card that declared she had artificial knees, but she still had to go through a separate pat down. While I waited on the other side for about half an hour, she got her pat down taken care of, and we were able to keep going. I just could not believe that they put her through all of that. A sixty two year old lady, with a card, still has to be patted down.

Once boarded on the plane we had a relatively easy time. After we got to my great uncle’s house, we opened our suitcases. They had not only been riffled through, but they also had been broken. All along the bottom of my suitcase the plastic was broken off, and my clothes were scattered all over, unfolded and wrinkled. I do understand that the airport security has the right to go through any suitcases. Part of me wonders though, where they get the right to break suitcases and unfold all of our clothes. This above all really bothered me. They showed no respect for us or our things.

Sometimes I wonder, if society even respects human dignity and honesty any more. We pay so little attention to the people around us because we are so busy following the rules. People put genuine kindness on the back burner. Americans are so busy following what we have been told, that we do not think about others. Not only airport workers, but all people need to wake up and see how ridged we have become.

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