Posted by: beaufortninja | January 25, 2012

Douchebags of the Week: Everyone in the TSA

Most Americans are familiar with the TSA (Transportation Security Administration, a branch of the Department of Homeland Security. If you’re a frequent flier like myself then chances are you’ve either gotten an unhealthy dose of radiation from their full-body scanners than have been shown to cause cancer (TRUTH) or they’ve groped your junk in hilariously ineffective pat-downs. It was created after the 9/11 terrorist attacks to decrease the likelihood of a similar tragedy and has had limited success. But how could an agency whose job is to protect America make it to the super exclusive Douchebag of the Week list?

Most recently, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, son of presidential candidate Ron Paul, was on his way to Washington DC for a very important vote when the airport body scanner he went through detected an “anomaly”. Despite the senator’s requests for another scan, the TSA agents would accept nothing less than a full pat-down (which is a violation of one’s basic rights) and detained him a cubicle, making him miss his flight to the capital. What does the US Constitution (1789) say about this?

“The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.” -Article 1, Section 6

Oh. And here’s what the Articles of Confederation (1781) has to say about the detainment of politicians going to the capital:

“Freedom of speech and debate in Congress shall not be impeached or questioned in any Court, or place out of Congress, and the members of congress shall be protected in their persons from arrests and imprisonments, during the time of their going to and from, and attendance on congress, except for treason, felony, or breach of the peace.” Article 5, Articles of Confederation

Hmmm. I wonder why liberty-loving people everywhere are up in arms about this. I mean, the Constitution is supposed to be the law of the land, right? Or is it only the law of the land when the government thinks it’s convenient? When the internet censorship laws get brought back up in Congress and the Senate, will websites like mine be on the chopping block too? Free speech is only welcome if you speak the government’s line. But I’m getting away from the point. The TSA has shown a serious lack of judgment and trustworthiness throughout its entire history. Here’s a brief roundup of some of the worst stuff.

- TSA agents forced a young mother to stand in a glass enclosure in front of other passengers for 40 minutes because she requested alternative screening procedures so as not to contaminate her breast milk with radiation. http://www.examiner.com/airlines-airport-in-national/tsa-holds-woman-with-breast-milk-captive-glass-cage

- Several agents have been caught with child pornography, the most recent of which was Scott Wilson in Maryland. Keep in mind that these are the kinds of people patting down your kids in the airport. http://www.examiner.com/family-parenting-in-national/tsa-screener-scott-wilson-arrested-on-child-pornography-charges

- And don’t forget about Sean Shanahan, an airport screener in charge of pat-downs in Boston who was discovered to be a child molester. http://www.thebostonchannel.com/mostpopular/22785620/detail.html

-And also Charles Henry Bennett, a 57 year old screener in Orlando who raped a 6 year old girl. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/31/charles-henry-bennett-tsa_n_443707.html

- Sounds pretty terrible, right? How about 52 year old Harold Glenn Rodman? He approached a woman while in uniform, showed his badge and proceeded to brutally rape her. Sexual harassment of women and children is commonplace and the jobs, particularly as an airport screener, are very attractive to some types of criminals. I’m sure getting to grope hundreds of people a day sounds pretty rad to these guys. http://www.wjla.com/articles/2011/11/harold-rodman-tsa-worker-arrested-for-sexual-assault-69420.html

- Apparently the TSA looks for these kinds of people. As a joke, a Youtube user called their office looking for a job. He pretended to be a porn addict and despite knowing that he was a sexual deviant, he was still taken seriously! http://www.libertariannews.org/2010/11/17/porn-addict-applies-at-tsa/

- 2 old women, Lenore Zimmerman (age 85, in a wheelchair) and Ruth Sherman (age 88), were forced to take their clothes off for a strip search and claim to have been sexually molested. The TSA apologized for the misuse of Sherman’s colostomy bag but made no mention of the alleged abuse. Zimmerman has since filed charges against the TSA. http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/tsa-apologizes-elderly-women-strip-search-kennedy-airport-article-1.1007725

- A bladder cancer survivor had his urostomy bag busted during a pat-down and left him drenched in urine. http://www.newser.com/story/105840/tsa-pat-down-soaks-man-in-own-urine.html

- Minetta Walker, an agent in New York, snuck drug traffickers through airport security and helped one of them fly under a fake name. Oh and she did most of it while off-duty but was still wearing her uniform. http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2828809/posts

- An agent removed a person’s nipple ring with a set of pliers. For serial. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23830845/ns/travel-news/t/tsa-responds-nipple-ring-complaint/

- Passengers routinely report items being stolen by TSA agents. Nelson Santiago-Serrano was arrested after stealing $50,000 worth of electronics from passenger’s bags and selling it. He was caught red-handed by a Continental Airlines employee as he was stealing an iPad. http://www.digitaltrends.com/gadgets/tsa-agent-plunders-50k-in-electronics-caught-shoving-ipad-in-pants/

- Sometimes they don’t even do their jobs! But most of the time they just plain suck. Research done in 2010 found out that scanners missed a whopping 70% of all the weapons that go through security. http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=news/local&id=7848683

These are just a few cases that barely even scratch the surface of the criminality that is the TSA. You can do your own research and I assure you that you will be thoroughly disgusted with them and the federal government who just gave them a boost in funding so they can take their oppression from the airport to a neighborhood near you. Oh, yeah, that’s right. They’re now doing road checkpoints. And they’re going to keep tyrannizing us until Americans finally stand up and take back their rights. Only a total moron gives up his freedom for a false sense of safety and it’s time to take back what’s rightfully ours.


Responses

  1. O.m.g. I had no idea of the extent of TSA’s abuse. I’ve heard about only a few of these on your list. Why? Because our news media keeps silent about all but the least invasive of these breaches of our freedoms. Why is it that, in light of everything you exposed in this post, the news doesn’t see fit to report on it? These are headline-making stories. Why are we not hearing about them? How egregious they are? How often they happen? How many people suffer through it? Why is all this a secret from us?

    And yes, you’re right – when a new, more confusedly worded form of SOPA/PIPA returns to the table, blogs like yours and mine will “be on the chopping block.” Those of us who speak out about impingements on our freedoms – or about anything else which shines a dangerous light on the powers that be – will become targets of the machine. I’ve seen this in a number of countries I’ve been to (blacked out emails, calls ‘dropped’ if anything ‘controversial’ is mentioned during the conversation, intranet instead of internet, etc.). Can you imagine this happening America, Land of the Free(?), Home of the Brave(? – as in, how brave is our news media, keeping the secrets of government corruption). This is a great post. You truly are the Ninja of Freedom.

    • All the agencies and corporations who fund them watch each other’s backs. Some news only makes it to the local news and the big networks don’t pick it up because they pretty much have to spew the government’s line. Thanks for the support. I’m just a guy with an arm like a cannon and the mind of a scientist. ;)

  2. This is the abuse you get when you have a corrupt unaccountable agency whose workers consider themselves above the law.

    In 2011 there were 62 TSA screeners arrested for serious crimes, including rape and murder. Of these, 11 were for sex crimes involving children and 4 for smuggling contraband through security There were 2 more arrested in the second week of 2012 and TSA is on pace to for another 60 crimes.

    TSA hiring standards state that the worker may not have had a criminal conviction in the past five years but exclude juvenile convictions when the applicant becomes 18 even if the conviction is less than a year old. Consequently many TSA workers have criminal histories but we’re supposed to trust them with airline security and control of our belongings.

    TSA Crimes & Abuses
    bit.ly/TravelUndergroundTSAabuses

  3. What a thoughtful comment! I think most people would agree that there needs to be some alternative to the TSA. But what should the alternative be? Should transportation security be privatized? Or should it all be left to the states? Anyway, thanks for the link!

  4. JimmyJam – love your blog and this was a good read. When are you going to post some of your cartoons? You rawk of course. ;-)

  5. [...] According to The Atlantic‘s Conor Friedersdorf, the question has been asked and answered. But apparently, without much consideration for our constitutional right for protection against unreasonable search and seizure. [...]


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