Is it possible for a terrorist to bring down an American jetliner with a nipple ring?

If you work for the Transportation Safety Administration, the answer to that question is apparently --- yes.

The Associated Press tells the story of Mandi Hamlin -- a 37-year-old woman who was forced to remove her nipple rings by snickering TSA employees. Miss Hamlin had the unfortunate experience of setting off one of the TSA's metal detectors at an airport in Lubbock, Texas.

She volunteered to show a female agent her nipple rings in private --- but the TSA ordered her to take them off. If you get queasy, you might want to skip this part. It seems the only way Miss Hamlin could remove the piercings was with a pair of pliers. Oh good grief!

Her belly button ring was allowed to stay put --- seeing how it was not deemed a flight risk.

Well, Miss Hamlin is a bit upset -- and she wants an apology. So far, she hasn't gotten one. But that may change. She's hired Gloria Allred -- a high profile, big shot attorney who does to courtroom adversaries what the TSA routinely does to airline passengers.

I have first hand knowledge of the TSA's handiwork. My personal favorite happened at JFK International Airport where an agent asked a five year old boy whether he was carrying any firearms. A five year old boy! The child's mother explained the obvious to the agent. He said he was just doing his job. I don't know about you --- but I sure feel safer.

As Miss Allred told the Associated Press --- she doesn't recall a nipple ring being a dangerous weapon.