Fine, I'm a Sheep

Effluvia, Politics & Current Events

Yes, all of the security theater bothers me. No, I do not think it useful and I am thankful that I don't have any plans to fly in the near future. That said, I don't think I'd do what Matt from No Blasters! did to avoid the indignities of the backscatter machine or the enhanced rubdown to reenter the United States when returning from an international flight.

By asserting his constitutional rights (whatever those may be, and I doubt that the courts will agree that he has the rights he thinks he has) and calmly asking for supervisor after supervisor like he was complaining at a Waldbaum's that refused to accept a coupon, he was eventually escorted out of the airport without any more than a trip through the metal detector. The story is worth reading in its entirety to see what you have to endure to convince the TSA to give up on you but here is the conclusion:

In order to enter the USA, I was never touched, I was never “Backscatted,” and I was never metal detected. In the end, it took 2.5 hours, but I proved that it is possible. I’m looking forward to my next flight on Wednesday.

Two and a half hours? I'd let a government worker cup my balls without gloves to save that much time at the DMV.

Last 5 posts by Charles

7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Vice Magnet  •  Nov 23, 2010 @10:17 pm

    My guess is they were all caught with their pants down. If the dude tries it again they will have some procedure defined for him and those with similar claims, assuming it is the same airport. Maybe it will only take 5 minutes and maybe it will take longer than the 2 1/2 hours. I'd be surprised if his arrival leads to a complete re-enactment of the first time. I certainly have better things to do than what he did, laptop and iPhone aside. Why is it all the people doing these things have iPhones anyway?

  2. G Thompson  •  Nov 23, 2010 @10:28 pm

    Personally I think this guy should be given a medal for perseverance and gumption ;)

    Though let me get this part correct…

    A US citizen has to go through the same process getting off of an international flight with the TSA as they have to getting on one? and this is AFTER they have cleared customs and are therefore legally on USA Soil?

    the question has to be asked WHY? what reasonable purpose does it serve to protect against the security of the USA (or for that matter anywhere)?

    It means someone who has prohibited items (whether drugs, weapons, explosives, Dr Juerds jungle juice, or whatnot) has to board an international flight through that countries security system (which is most likely MORE thorough than the TSA and better at it) they then have to fly all the way with this on their person NOT doing anything in the aircraft with it and then have to go through US Customs??? WOW!

    well at least one thing can be seen.. Seems that the TSA is under the impression that they can do things better than the US Customs Service.. *mind blown*

  3. Transplanted Lawyer  •  Nov 23, 2010 @11:14 pm

    I’d let a government worker cup my balls without gloves to save that much time at the DMV.

    I would too. If she were cute.

  4. Maggie Mama  •  Nov 24, 2010 @4:36 am

    Exactly what happens when the next alleged bomber shoves the explosive powder into his darkest orifice for removal in the airplane bathroom during the flight?

    Does our government then start ordering us to "DROP THE DRAWERS AND ASSUME THE POSITION!"?

    And do YOU listen to Big Sis then?

  5. tom  •  Nov 24, 2010 @7:26 am

    G. Thompson, I don't know about other airports, but if you arrive from another country into Newark or Detroit, you have to clear immigration, pick up your bags and then clear customs, at which point you are outside the "secure area". To catch a domestic flight, you have to go through screening again. If you have no flight to catch you aren't rescreened.

  6. ZK  •  Nov 24, 2010 @8:16 am

    I don't think it necessarily is a comment on how much you value civil liberties, so much as it shows that time has different value for different people.

  7. MV  •  Nov 24, 2010 @8:54 pm

    Posting a link to a similar situation essentially asserting that he does have the rights he thinks he has.

    http://nomadlaw.com/2010/04/i-am-detained-by-feds-for-not-answering-questions/