A lot of people are misunderstanding the OP. The fact that someone sneaks past security justifies searching them. Similarly, the fact that someone in the terminal has contact with someone outside of the terminal, justifies searching both of those people. In both of those situations, there is a valid reason to perform at least some search. The OP is NOT talking about how much authorityTSA should have in general, who searches should be performed on, or how searches should be performed. In other words, the OP was NOT saying that, as a matter of everyday security, we should patdown four-year old girls. The OP IS saying that the specific circumstances OF THIS CASE justified at least some extra scrutiny. For a community that purports to be news for nerds, it sure does have an abundance of people who are incapable of independent thought/reasoning.