The Department of Homeland Security needs to clarify its position here without delay. CAIR advised Muslim women in the press release quoted here that:
"Instead of the pat-down, you can always request to pat down your own scarf, including head and neck area"...
Two facts should be self-evident to demonstrate how outrageous this idea is. First, the whole point of being searched by someone else is to find concealed objects. A "self-pat-down" clearly defeats that purpose and is a completely unacceptable lapse in security. Let's remember the stakes here: if something goes wrong in air security in the wrong place at the wrong time, people die. There is enough margin for error in the system already without adding this variable.
Secondly, the fact that Napolitano could even be considering such a measure highlights a double standard for special treatment that would not be considered for any other religious group, but is extended to Muslims without a second thought. What is going on here is a politically correct sort of anti-profiling: by all appearances, the air security apparatus bends over backwards to profile Muslims as not being a threat, in a way that it does not strive to reassure other demographic groups in the traveling public.
We are told time and again that Muslims in America just want to be treated like everyone else. Ergo, if you want equal treatment as a Muslim woman, participate in your social responsibilities equally even when it is awkward or inconvenient, rather than acting like some kind of demigoddess whose head and neck are untouchable by sullied human hands in the screening line. Your head and neck are as human as that of the next non-Muslim lady in line who is no more thrilled to be there than you are.
But let's remember why we're standing there waiting with our shoes in a plastic bin, and why so many security procedures have come into being in the first place: Islamic jihadists keep trying to bring down our planes, more and more with explosives concealed on their bodies.