Exploring the pathways of our lexicon
November 23, 2010By Ben Zimmer
The outrage over new security procedures enforced by the Transportation Security Administration has thrust the word pat-down into the news. Airline passenger screenings in the U.S. now involve full-body scans, or if the passenger refuses the scan, a full-body pat-down. While the TSA faces backlash against these so-called "enhanced pat-downs" (an unfortunate term reminiscent of "enhanced interrogation techniques" at Guantanamo), plain-old pat-downs have been part of the lexicon of law enforcement for decades. Continue reading...