Really Stupid Security Theater: The Audi Field Edition

As the Security Rachet (and racket) continues to needlessly tighten, we are reminded that many sports facilities now require women to use see-through clear plastic purses or bags–what one reader has referred to as “HI, I’M MENSTRUATING!” purses (think about it, if you need to…). Well, D.C.’s Audi Field has boldly expanded the limits of security theater stupidity (boldface mine):

The policy seems simple: If you want to bring certain items into DC United’s Audi Field, they have to be in a clear bag. You can also bring a small, opaque clutch or purse no larger than 6.5″ x 4.5″. If your opaque clutch is too big, you can’t bring it in … unless you put it in a slightly larger, clear bag. Then it’s good to go…

A DC United spokesperson confirmed that the confusing loophole part of Miller’s tweet—putting purses inside clear Ziplock bags—is Audi Field’s policy. When asked why, he said, “It’s to ensure that all items are all contained within one clear bag.”

Items like cell phones and cameras can also be carried into the stadium by hand or pocket—as long as they’re not in an unapproved bag. The spokesperson said that all attendees are screened at the gate. You can’t bring more than one clutch, though, so that’s not a workaround.

It follows the letter of the law: all items must be contained inside a clear bag, full stop. However, to anyone under the impression the clear bag policy was implemented so all items could be seen, it’s a bit of a doozy—covering a small clutch with a clear plastic bag doesn’t increase visibility. (It doesn’t reduce visibility either, so…) Additionally, there’s no rule against taking it out of the plastic bag once you enter the stadium.

This is just stupid. It’s not making anyone safer. Dial back the security rachet.

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