back to article Pope pooh-poohs airport perv-scanners

The Pope has come out against airport scanners - or maybe he hasn’t, but those operating the scanners may be sinning all the same. Yesterday’s newspapers were full of reports that, in granting an audience to representatives of ENAC (Ente Nazionale per l’Aviazione Civile Italiana) and ENAV (Ente Nazionale per l’Assistenza al …


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  1. Davey Bee


    "The idea that we are going to get kicks out of seeing a blurry grey image... is frankly offensive"

    But their idea - that I am going to get kicks out of murdering 100s of people - is NOT offensive?

  2. kbb

    Why not...

    ...put up a scan of the person doing the scanning for that shift at the scanner? Fair's fair.

  3. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  4. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

    We used to have Catholic terrorists you know.

    Hmm. Actually I was thinking of the previous Pope ordering the faithful to do their best to assassinate Queen Elizabeth I, but of course, more recently than that -

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Fairs fair

      Her dad started it.

  5. Joseph Haig


    Sorry, I must have missed something. Where exactly in that address does it mention scanners, or any particular technology for that matter. I am reading it through the Google translation, so perhaps there are mistranslations, but as far as I can see he is stressing that it is important not to ignore the personal dignity of the individuals while going all out to clamp down on terrorists. He stresses that special care needs to be taken when dealing with the vulnerable, such as refugees, immigrants, the disabled and sick. He finishes by commending their work and all their projects.

    But then, why should you bother to try to understand what he is actually saying when you can instead take cheap shots at Catholics?

  6. Velv Silver badge

    Why Scan ?

    Remove all security at airports.

    After terrorists have blown up a couple of dozen planes it'll be old news, barely making the regional edition and certainly won't be international news.

    And I'm sure the passengers will have a more vested interest in their own safety, forming their own ad-hoc security groups to "control" the flight and ensure it arrives safely.

    And given many people would chose not to gamble (fly) under this rule, it will help the environment too :)

    God does protect his own flock, of course, so if you have faith, you've nothing to worry about.

  7. Chris Haynes

    El Poperino?

    Hasn't anyone tried to bump off this old fool yet?

    A = Sin, B = Sin, C = Sin... Z = Sin

    There's fuck all left we can do that isn't a sin or an offence to someone or other.

    Fuck religion, and royally fuck the Pope.

    1. Steve Evans

      I'm confused...

      Is that a list of rules handed down from the Pope or from HM Gov?

    2. peyton?

      But then we would miss out

      On the steaming pile of wisdom that is The Reg comments.

      To be fair, The Register takes cheap shots at damn near everyone. Though this article did incorporate two of their (current) favorite topics - Il Papa and airport scanners - it was a bit of stretch. Just have to accept that it's been a slow lolz - I mean news - day.

    3. Anonymous Coward

      RE: RTFA

      To be fair, El Papa has a history of saying and doing abhorrent things. "No condoms for Africa" is abhorrent. Being a member of the Nazi Youth might also be considered abhorrent. Being a member of a religion so hypocritical that it contradicts itself at every turn also horrifies many people...

      ..."taking cheap shots at Catholics" or even EL Papa is not my aim here - taking powerful shots against ALL believers in "the great sky fairy" is more up my street!

    4. steogede

      Re: RTFA

      I haven't looked at the original article, but none of direct quotes in El Reg's article seem to mention scanners either. It seems like it is a case of reading between the lines between the lines.

      BTW, I don't see the issue with scanners - I mean, they can perform strip searches and cavity searches on whim, so how are scanners any worse. Personally, I'm just waiting for the first unarmed martial artist to hijack a plane - then we will see all the extra security measures for what they are (after all if a solitary nail file is such a threat, just think what Chuck Norris could do).

  8. Emperor Zarg
    Thumb Up

    I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that

    Does this mean that Catholics can refuse to go through the scanners on the grounds that it is against their religion?

  9. smudge Silver badge

    Wholly moly!

    "...the Holy Father says: "In every deed, the one thing that sits above everything else is the need to safeguard and value the person as a whole.""

    Could someone please spell it out to the Pontiff that the point of these things is to increase the chances of said persons remaining "whole"?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    According to the quote, the problem is looking at an image with lust in your eyes... So looking at an image without lust is no problem according to the big book.

    So all they have to do is staff the scanners with eunuchs, or people willing to take chemical castration drugs.

    Or how about gay men can man the female scanner, and lesbian women can (wo)man the male scanner?

    Can't wait for the equal opportunities commission to come out and stand up for the first intact heterosexual who gets turned down for the job.

    Alternatively just find some people with enough free will not to listen to an old man who wears a dress in public and hears messages from God in his head.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      RE: Wholly moly!

      "Could someone please spell it out to the Pontiff that the point of these things is to increase the chances of said persons remaining "whole"?"

      Really? Well, more people die in car crashes than in plane disasters so maybe mandatory road-side checks of all vehicles and their contents should take place every 10 miles.

    2. Anonymous Coward

      RE: well...

      "Alternatively just find some people with enough free will not to listen to an old man who wears a dress in public and hears messages from God in his head."

      I agree with you except I'm far more cynical and I think El Papa has been in the game long enough to know that:

      a, there is no god

      b, sheeple wil blindly follow whatever he tells them

      1. smudge Silver badge

        RE: Wholly moly!

        "Really? Well, more people die in car crashes than in plane disasters so maybe mandatory road-side checks of all vehicles and their contents should take place every 10 miles."

        FFS, don't give them ideas.

        I suppose we could all turn Amish and use nothing more than horse-and-cart for transport

        1. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

          Horses and carts are dangerous too...

          Pierre Curie was killed by a horse-drawn vehicle.

          Perhaps we can develop glowing stones he was working on to improve road safety?

          The glowing, lead-lined one, please.

        2. Anonymous Coward


          Do you even realize how dangerous horses are? They kick and bite and... do stuff. Seen it in the movies. Bloody murderous animal, it is.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    alternative to the perv-scanners...

    (received today via email)

    Begin forwarded message:

    *Date: *February 3, 2010 1:35:01 PM PST

    *Subject: **Problem solved for airport and federal bldg security*

    *Here's a solution to all the controversy over full-body

    scanners at the airports. Have a booth that you can step into

    that will not X-ray you, but will detonate any explosive device

    you may have on you.*

    *It would be a win-win for everyone, and there would be none of this

    crap about racial profiling and this method would eliminate a long

    and expensive trial. Justice would be quick and swift..*

    *Case Closed!*

  12. Anonymous Coward

    why is this news?

    who cares what the pope thinks beyond the Christian population?!

    we live in a multi-cultural world where Christianity is no longer the dominant religion and the Pope is not our leader.

    in my eyes he is just an old geezer who feels he has the right to meddle in the lives of all people in the so-called civilised world (examples: airport scanners, gay rights, equal opportunities, etc, etc, etc)

    the pope appears to set out and tell everyone that everything they want to do is a mortal sin.

    so f**k it, i sin EVERY day according to this pompous preacher and im glad. it means i can enjoy my life without ridiculous limits and i can comfortably know that i make my own decisions without the input of a non-existent, alledgedly omnipotent clown in the sky.

    bring on the day that real evidence is brought forward that all religions are fallacy. then we can move on as a species and start to make some real social and scientific progress!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      This way:

      Pretty much the same way this one black man presides over 300-odd million people, some meagre 5% of the world population and not the most populous nation by a long shot, but with enough influence to flout (which he regularly does) to make the world pay attention to his every move. Perhaps a bit too fanatically, I'll agree, but still that's the status quo.

      1. No, I will not fix your computer

        Same way?

        Obama was at least elected, if you agree with the process or not, if you think it's a corrupt, "who has the most money" election or not is (almost) irrelevant .

        The Pope however belongs to an unelected God corporation which weilds power through peoples ignorant contrition.

        God inc. has nothing valuable say, well no opinion more valuable than mine or yours, and when their opinion is not even based on fact but biased by the need to fit in with myth it should be given the respect it deserves (none).

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Bee aya en gee oh spells BINGO

      But what is this Pope horses ass?

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Now if the scanners *detected* pervs...

    ...the Catholic Church might have something to REALLY worry about...

  14. frank ly Silver badge

    Catholic bears?

    "Pope pooh-poohs "

    I think you're getting this mixed up with the 'bears in the woods' scenario.

  15. Graham Bartlett


    There's a trivially simple line of reasoning.

    Starting point: Religion X imposes trivial rules about what clothes you wear, what you eat, and what you do on particular days or at particular times during the day. AFAIK this applies to every organised religion.

    If these rules are considered to be solely the creation of people, not of God, then all rules of that religion are equally open for interpretation, because the people who decided which rules were God-given could equally well be wrong. In which case we need to look at all the rules and see which key rules are required to live a good life. And now it's people deciding what ethical behaviour should be for people, which is the very definition of humanist ethics and requires no God-given rules.

    Or if these rules could be considered to be the creation of God, in which case failure to follow these rules results in worse prospects after death (whether this is an Abrahamic afterlife or reincarnation is immaterial). But a God who bases this judgement on trivia instead of on moral conduct is by definition not a supreme being, and is not worthy of worship.

    Job done. (Which reminds me, the conduct of the Abrahamic God in the Book of Job is pretty much a textbook example of evil incarnate, taking bets with another supernatural being on what some bloke's doing to do when they murder his friends and family and he's left sick, starving and penniless. Anyone wants to use the Old Testament as a moral code, better pick the bones out of that one.)

  16. Disco-Legend-Zeke

    Number Two Excuse...

    ...for killing people: "The Devil made me do it."

    At the top of the list: "God made me do it."

    Humans seem to have a need for a diety, it's the unanswered questions that make us lie awake at night. Before science, God was all we had. So a person that can show us the way to God commands extreme power over groups of humans, large or small.

    No one sect, race, or country has a monopoly on religeous evil. From witch burning to tower toppling, it's the desire by corrupt humans to hold this power that is the true killer.

    211 is NOT the blood of Christ, it tastes like the piss of toads, but it stills the unanswered questions. Without translation form the Latin.

    1. Secretgeek

      "Humans seem to have a need for a diety."

      I tried a diety once. It made me thinity.


      On a more serious note. This need that you speak of isn't need for a god it's a need to explain that which we don't understand, the world around us and our own existence. Simple curiosity which in my opinion is one of human race's greatest assets (civilisation) and one of it's weakest (religion).

  17. Blofeld's Cat


    Was there any particular reason for the tags "bear" and "woods" on this article?

    Or do they just automatically appear with the "pope" and "catholic" ones.

  18. Anonymous Coward

    Re: Why scan

    "> BTW, I don't see the issue with scanners"

    I don't have an issue with millimetre wave scanners.

    I do have an issue with the X-ray ones though.

    My issue is simple; unnecessary X-ray dosage. X-rays are a known and proven carcinogen. Those scanners will be directing the beam onto the surface of the skin. X-rays + skin = skin cancer. Whilst it may not personally cause me to develop a cancer, the risk to the population as a whole is increased. You can be assured that there will be cancers coming from this.

    How many terrorists have been caught through the use of these devices in the UK/USA? So far, I think none. How many are likely to be caught? None, unless they're the particularly stupid ones, and that line from US Immigration about "are you a terrorist" probably catches those anyway ;)

    This is security theatre, plain and simple; but it's the worst kind: It's security theatre that can actually cause harm.

  19. heyrick Silver badge

    I smell a rat...

    "The idea that we are going to get kicks out of seeing a blurry grey image of people’s bodies is frankly offensive."

    Don't care if you get your yayas out of it or not, my question is "blurry grey image". Which proves what, exactly? What good is a blurry grey image?

  20. Winkypop Silver badge

    Two brids one stone

    Airport 'confessional scanners'.

    Introducing the "Pope-o-Tron"

    100% science free.

    1. Take confession of traveler

    2. Forgive the sin

    3. Disarm as necessary

    Not Catholic?

    No problem, but no flying for you though!

  21. TeeCee Gold badge

    Of course he's against them.

    As soon as he steps into one it's going to be bleedin' obvious that he's actually a Dalek with a rubber head duct taped to the top*.

    *Turning Daleks into respected pontiffs is the little-known 102nd thing you can do with duct tape.

  22. John Ozimek

    re. "I smell a rat"

    heyrick wrote:

    "Don't care if you get your yayas out of it or not, my question is "blurry grey image". Which proves what, exactly? What good is a blurry grey image?"

    Hmmm. works OK for squirrels. Which are sort of tree rats anyway.

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