Back in September, I wrote about how writer Amy Alkon was — in her view, and mine — sexually assaulted by a TSA agent and then threatened with a defamation suit for writing about the incident.
Amy wrote an opinion piece about the experience, and since September, has been trying to get it published in the American media. Now, it's a big deal for me to get published, but Amy's been published in all sorts of mainstream, widely-read publications, including as a syndicated columnist. It's no big deal for her. Yet, no matter how far and wide she shopped the column, she found that the American media — including outlets that had published her before — were not interested in her description of a TSA agent groping Amy's privates and then threatening to sue when she complained.
Amy has finally found a media outlet willing to run her story.
Now, choosing which stories to publish is an art, not a science. Perhaps the American media outlets didn't care for Amy's writing — even though they had published her many times before. Perhaps the story didn't grab them, perhaps they had no room that month, perhaps they were emphasizing other crucial stories like the tragic Kardashian divorce.
But, as I argued a year ago, though the media has reported on passenger accounts of TSA abuse, when it comes to editorial comment, the media has generally acted as the TSA's dutiful fluffers, compliantly parroting the line that good citizens must endure this for their safety.
Call me a cynic. But I think that might have had something to do with it.
Now, did Pravda publish Amy's story because it still delights in illuminating America's shame? Perhaps. But Russians also know bureaucratic thuggery when they see it.
You can find all of our TSA coverage here.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
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