Public comment at 1/3/11 RAC meeting: Thomas Nephew

The Montgomery County Civil Rights Coalition and the DC Bill of Rights Coalition have been promoting an online petition against Metro’s random bag search policy. The wording is simple:

We the undersigned oppose random bag searches of metro passengers as unconstitutional, ineffective and misguided. We demand that WMATA immediately discontinue the searches.

Well over 600 people –about evenly divided between Maryland, Virginia, and DC — have now added their names to this petition. (36/27/30% of 615 online, 1/3/11)

Here are those names.

Nearly 60 percent of the online petitioners (57 percent) commute to/from work or school using Metro, nearly half (45 percent) said they use the system for other trips ten or more times a month, and nearly three quarters (72 percent) report one or both of these Metro usage patterns.

The costs of the bag search policy for future use of Metro by these petitioners could be serious: over 80 percent report they will use WMATA less often if the bag search policy is implemented.

The Metro system is thus going to great expense to drive down its own ridership, yet provide no real security benefit in doing so – and all when Metro admits there’s quote “no specific or credible threat” unquote to the system.  We should never give up our constitutional right to only be searched for good cause – and we certainly shouldn’t when the benefits are essentially zero and the result undermines our transit system.

Please pass a resolution calling for this policy to end.  Thank you.

Thomas Nephew
Takoma Park, MD

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2 Responses to Public comment at 1/3/11 RAC meeting: Thomas Nephew

  1. Pingback: Bag search opponents swamp Metro Riders Advisory Council meeting | Montgomery County Civil Rights Coalition

  2. Pingback: People’s Blog for the Constitution :: DC Metro riders weigh in on random bag inspections

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