I feel sorry for the screeners who work for airport security.

And it’s not just because they are forever in a no-win situation, where every commonsense decision to save someone hassle increases the danger on board the aircraft – “If we don’t take knitting needles away from the little girl, does this mean we need to let the guy dressed as a Ninja keep his?”

No, I feel sorry for airport screeners because they will soon have whole body imagers. Gazing upon my nakedness without benefit music and proper lighting is going to strain the coffers of the Workers’ Compensation Board for sure.

Whether it is after-trauma support or injuries sustained from trying to tear their eyeballs from their sockets, there is going to be some long-term rehabilitation here.

But hey, if the Elephant Man could have friends, and people can watch the Glenn Beck/Sarah Palin interview, then surely the science of suppressing the gag reflex has advanced enough that these airport screeners have a fighting chance to become something more than “disposable” after one Darrell Hookey sighting.

Perhaps they will be allowed to drink alcohol on the job. That has certainly helped that very small club of women I have been intimate with. (But, Dr. Tadros, you are just going to have to tough it out for my next physical.)

Still, you have to wonder at the slippery slope that society has just stepped onto when we are expected to get naked – albeit in a virtual sense — before we board an airplane.

Up until now, it has only been prisoners who had to parade in their all-together-nothingness before going into the next room. Them and, of course, 43-year-old freelance writers who apply to become editor of a new entertainment magazine in the Yukon … I am just now struck by the odd juxtaposition of these two standards.

It can be argued that passengers on a plane can wreak havoc in the air if they are allowed to bring on a bomb; prisoners could cause a lot of damage if they are allowed to bring a gun into the prison population; and 43-year-old freelance writers could … hey, this is starting to bother me more and more.

Anyway, it could also be argued that a director of a big bank could cause just as much damage if they enter a boardroom with self-serving intentions.

I think maybe these Wall Street tycoons should be stripped naked first, and scanned for telltale tan lines that indicate they’ve recently been in Brazil. Or, perhaps, the absence of tan lines that indicate they’ve recently been in Switzerland.

OK, that last paragraph went a little too far. Do you want to take a moment here? Think of cute puppies to make that image go away.

I’m just saying, there are unintended consequences of having our privates peered at by someone sitting all alone in a small room with a computer.

For one thing, it gives us all that one thing we now have in common with Pamela Anderson.

But more than that, we lose our innocence. Remember how cute it was when we just knew we were safe on an airplane because there was no way there would be a bomb on board? We knew this because only baggage, that belonged to a passenger that was actually on board, was allowed. Otherwise, the plane would not take off.

Yeah. That wasn’t so long ago was it?

Flying has become a leap of faith, just as it is turning left onto the Mayo Road from an unlit intersection at night … you just hope that someone isn’t driving at you without headlights.

So, please allow me to offer you this comforting fact: airplanes are still absolutely the safest way to fly.