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Jun 28, 2011

TSA molestations and assaults on dignity continue to be out of control at US airports

Over the weekend the case of a 95 year old  woman who was humiliated by the TSA or Transportation Security Administration at a Florida airport has reignited the controversy over govern

Over the weekend the case of a 95 year old  woman who was humiliated by the TSA or Transportation Security Administration at a Florida airport has reignited the controversy over government backed criminal assaults and molestations of air travellers.

The woman, a cancer sufferer who could barely walk, was told that her incontinencey diaper was too soiled for inspection, and she was required to remove it in a toilet and then continue her interstate flight without underwear.

The distressing details of this incident can be seen on CNN here.

However for Australians these stories, and they are legion, are a reminder that this out of control US security agency will at random touch your children in ways that are criminally offensive in Australia, as well as sexually assault adults of any age, as part of the security insanity that pervades air travel in the US.

One of the most disturbing things about the reports is this quote.

“While every person and item must be screened before entering the secure boarding area, TSA works with passengers to resolve security alarms in a respectful and sensitive manner,” the federal agency said. “We have reviewed the circumstances involving this screening and determined that our officers acted professionally and according to proper procedure.”
Earlier, Sari Koshetz, a spokeswoman for the Transportation Security Administration in Miami, told the News-Herald there was a reason why security procedures were the same for everyone.
“TSA cannot exempt any group from screening because we know from intelligence that there are terrorists out there that would then exploit that vulnerability,” Koshetz told the newspaper.

Those claims are lies. The TSA has felt up the genitals of thousands of air travellers in the US without catching a single terrorist at any airport. In the same time its employees have stolen valuables from the possessions of many travellers, and the agency been forced to dismiss dozens of jet loads of criminally inclined recruits who would never have been employed in the first place if the TSA had effective checks on prospective employees in place.

In another incident this month which has now gone viral on social media, another elderly woman who had pinned some money into her under garments was also humiliated by the TSA. That report, on the YouTube below, should be viewed carefully by anyone considering discretionary travel to the US, not because you may be elderly or prefer to carry cash on your person, but because of the dignity and bewilderment of the victim, and what it tells us of this persistent epidemic of madness at US airports.


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12 thoughts on “TSA molestations and assaults on dignity continue to be out of control at US airports

  1. Stevo the Working Twistie

    To quote their very own Ben Franklin – “The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either.”

  2. ggm

    Not to excuse all of the TSA approach on this, but was it sensible to travel without a spare incontinence pad?

    Not to blame the passenger for all of this, Surely the TSA has enough people with disabilities that they can have spare pads, colostomy sacs etc on hand?

    This is the kind of thing, like burqa removal, which could be handled sensitively, and it looks like some agencies just prefer to bluster through, than find a better way.


  3. Lisa Simeone

    I’m glad to see foreign news outlets picking this up and publicizing it.

    I’ve been trying for 18 months to get people to wake up about what’s going on over here, but there’s so much apathy, so much docility, so much willful ignorance. Not only are many Americans nothing more than sheeple, but my friends overseas don’t believe this stuff is even going on. They think I’m exaggerating.

    The TSA is an abusive, out-of-control, criminal agency. Unfortunately, I think things will have to get worse — a lot worse — before they get better. Many more TSA apologists and cowards will have to be abused themselves before it sinks in to their thick skulls. Only then will they wake up. But by then, it’ll probably be too late.

  4. nonscenic

    Not to condone the actions of TSA in any way, but how are procedural manuals written so that “obviously” low risk categories are not subject to higher levels of scrutiny? A reasonable person would make the decision that an unwell 95 year old was a low risk category, but I sense the TSA operators are not allowed to show initiative under current arrangements. Security at airports in many other countries seems to allow their operators some limited discretion, probably by default rather than design.
    In a strict command structure, like the TSA (or some Russian airports) there is little scope to have common sense prevail

  5. Rik

    The term most used on the internet for this is “gate rape”.

  6. Roquefort Muckraker

    The coup in 2001 is finally becoming a reality.

  7. 2353

    The thing about airport security in my limited experience is that the Australia and Canada follow the same/similar procedures to the TSA as far as the scanning of passengers is concerned but they do it with humanity.

    The TSA are nasty para-military by comparison. If we are ever fortunate enough to go to Canada again we would seriously think about paying the extra to fly direct to Vancouver. While parts of the US are probably very nice, the pain experienced to get into the country is just not worth it.

  8. Captain Planet

    Having travelled by air to over 20 countries in all continents on the planet, I was recently flabbergasted that I could not enter the United States without supplying a permanent record of my fingerprints. No other country I have ever been to has such a flagrant disregard for privacy.

    On the way back out of the good old USA, after removing my rings, watch, cash, mobile phone, wallet, belt, shoes, hat and glasses, I blindly shuffled through the metal detector in my socks, holding my pants up, only to be rushed on before I was fully redressed, so I could be intrusively searched, and then forced to throw out my drinking water, mouthwash, and a one inch long philips head cordless screwdriver bit that I accidentally left in my bag. The staff held up the innocuous phillips head bit and demanded loudly “what did you intend to do with this??” I can only assume they were concerned I would dismantle the plane with it clutched painfully between my fingertips.

    There is absolutely no need for, and no benefit from, this insanity. Terrorist attacks would be just as effective on trains, buses, boats, football fields, libraries, crowded streets, or as demonstrated in Bali, Nightclubs. Unless we are going to apply the same dumbfounding level of paranoid security mania to all of these venues and modes of transport, it is high time we got real about airport security and restored some semblance of humanity to the process.

  9. yankiwi

    Several years ago TSA required prints from all 10 fingers and thumbs of inconing foreign nationals. My wife (US born) was travelling on her Australian passport.
    Having been born with only one arm she was unable to provide more than 5 finger/thumb prints. She was subsquently arrested for failure to comply with the requests of a TSA official.
    After one hour of incarceration with illegals and junkies she had her passport returned and was escorted through customs without a word or apology from anyone.

  10. SusieQ

    Nothing can beat a bit of American paranoia, they seem to do it better than anyone. I’ve not been to the US since before 9/11 (and am in no hurry to go back) but even then, the level of questioning and suspicion at immigration seemed way out of control for a 4 day visit, plus the daft questions on the entry card ‘have you ever been convicted of a crime of moral turpitude’ – I wasn’t even sure what that meant!!!!

  11. Lisa Simeone

    As an American, I would like to apologize to all foreigners for the idiocy and barbarity of my country.

    I wish there were something I could do — that I’m not already doing — to change this mess.

    I don’t blame anyone for not coming to the US anymore. The tourism industry is feeling the pinch, as has been reported over here. And it’s going to take a lot more people refusing to visit, refusing to spend their money here, and being vocal about why, before anything changes.

    Now as ever, money talks. If enough foreigners refuse to visit — and if enough Americans also refuse to fly — because of the rampant TSA abuse, then things will change.

  12. Peteyboy

    This sad and uniquely American event is just another demonstration of political correctness gone mad. If what happens to this old lady troubles use, you need to own up to the fact you’d prefer ‘profiling’ ie. racial, social etc. As unpleasant as it sounds to some, it’s the natural extension. I’m sure it actually goes on despite what the authorities say, but they might as well get upfront about it.