Adam at Emergent Chaos has a quick post on the lawsuit against the Seattle Seahawks over physical searches at the stadium.
My response? Get over it.
I performed more pat downs than I care to admit. Sometimes thousands on a given day. It ain’t fun, and I never enjoyed touching all you smelly, drunk, think-you’re-hotter-than-you-are types out there. It was, however, a great workout for your quads after the first few hundred squats to check the ankles.
The main reason for searches at football games isn’t weapons (except at Raider’s games), it’s booze. The biggest safety concern during most sporting events is drunks. More specifically, it’s testostahol.
When selling beer in a stadium there is a minimum level of control and patrons can be cut off when obviously drunk. No, it isn’t perfect, but it’s more effective than most of you realize. When patrons bring in hard alcohol things can get very ugly. Aside from fights, there are a lot of associated medical concerns (drunks like to fall down, pass out, and do other stupid stuff). Based on personal experience, the more you can screen up front (including denying entry for obvious intoxication), the less you have to deal with inside. Some items, particularly cans and bottles, are also very hazardous in a stadium environment. I’ve seen people nearly killed by an errant beer can thrown from the crowd at the crappy ref.
As for the legality, go look at the back of your ticket. Even if built using public money, a stadium during an event is a private facility. Otherwise, technically, anyone could go for free. On all your tickets to any concert or game is the provision that you can be denied entry for any reason. Refusing to subject yourself to a search is a good reason.
Besides, court houses, legislatures, military bases, and all sorts of other facilities are bought with public money and subject to security rules for public or private safety. What makes a stadium any different?
Get over it. No one wants to pat down your ugly ass anyway, so it’s not like they enjoy it.