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Old 09-19-2011, 09:02 PM
 
3,628 posts, read 8,694,534 times
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I think the cancer machine and groping are both ridiculous, seeing as neither make me feel safer (or more frightened, living in fear of the terrorists is silly and no way to live). HOWEVER, when my time comes and crossing my fingers doesn't work anymore, I have settled on the cancer machine because i don't like strangers touching me, period. What a stupid thing that I actually had to take time to consider.
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Old 09-19-2011, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Frankfort, IN
111 posts, read 356,313 times
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While I don't doubt the whole story, there are bits that I find to be a little unbelievable. I've flown through Atlanta several times with my wife and we both always opt-out of the scanner. She has never had to wait more than 10 minutes for a female agent to arrive and usually they're there within 5 minutes and then it usually only takes about 5 minutes for the screening to finish. We've been there during the timeframe that you mention and that's even been the case then.

Neither of us have ever been treated rudely because we opted out. I do know that there are some nasty agents, but in my experience at least, those are outnumbered by good ones. Well, maybe good is a bad word there, so I'll change that to polite ones.

What happened with your pants? Were you delayed any longer because of gunpowder residue? I find it somewhat hard to believe that you would wear those pants on a day that every American wants to freak out about security and if they found the traces of residue, then I find it impossible to believe that you wouldn't be delayed further.

One final thing and this one isn't to criticize your account of the situation, but more a tip. No matter how rude the agent wanted to be, you should have asserted yourself about being able to keep your belongings in your sight. This doesn't necessarily mean moving closer to them, which could be viewed as a threat, but just changing your position enough to give yourself a view of them. You should have also told the agent that you want to keep an eye on your stuff.
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Old 09-19-2011, 11:30 PM
 
Location: The Chatterdome in La La Land, CaliFUNia
38,777 posts, read 18,454,635 times
Reputation: 35677
Quote:
Originally Posted by supernerdgirl View Post
I just cross my fingers behind my back that I get to go through the regular metal detector.

Then usually laugh under my breath when they do something stupid like pass my bag through when there's nothing in there.

I find that airports that aren't that important (i'm thinking of Nashville specifically) have TSA staff that have nothing better to do than annoy people and/or scan their stuff over and over. Never once have I had a problem in Chicago. We will see how I fare in Cleveland (they are probably also bored).
I remembered the first time I flew after 9/11 (which was in 2007) where I was flying home from a small airport in Louisiana (Lafayette). When I turned over my baggage to be checked, the bored TSA decided to open it up and start rifling through it

But as Alaskan Mutt said, I try to choose my battles and this wasn't worth getting worked up over.
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Old 09-20-2011, 10:45 AM
 
8,268 posts, read 9,752,194 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdlee3 View Post
While I don't doubt the whole story, there are bits that I find to be a little unbelievable.
I get that feeling with much of the stuff I read on here about TSA. They are always rude, people get interrogated, molested, humiliated, etc. hell we even had one poster claiming to have noted a TSA lesbian conspiracy to pull teen girls out of line to fondle.

I don't doubt there are rude agents, but I've flown enough to see most just saying good morning at the ID check then simple work related instructions to "come on thru" usually in a bored voice near the machines.

Its the small vocal minority gnashing their teeth about the injustice of it all.
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Norfolk
1,286 posts, read 1,713,486 times
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Default wrnog

I really resent being called a liar.

Just because my experience is not a convenient match to your own, does not mean that you alone are correct and everyone else is wrong.

Rose
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Old 09-22-2011, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Frankfort, IN
111 posts, read 356,313 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RosemaryT View Post
I really resent being called a liar.

Just because my experience is not a convenient match to your own, does not mean that you alone are correct and everyone else is wrong.

Rose
I assume that this was meant for me. I never called you a liar. I simply said that there are parts of your story that don't add up and let's keep in mind that since we're just hearing one side of it, then a story is all that it is.

You got on somebody else earlier on the thread just because they disagreed with you and you even went so far as to ask them why they're posting on a public forum. You seem to resent anybody that doesn't see things your way so why are you posting on a public forum?

The TSA is an easy target right now because all you ever hear is the bad things they do and don't get me wrong, there are a lot of bad things in the news about them. That means it's easy to come on to a public forum such as this or www.flyertalk.com and tell a story such as this and get everybody on your side. I think you're just mad that there are some of us who don't believe a story just because somebody decides to tell it to us.

By the way, you suggested people go to FlyerTalk and see their forums on there regarding the TSA. You failed to mention though that the majority of people that post in the Safety and Security forum on the site think that they should be immune to ANY type of screening if they're flying first class. That alone makes me not believe half of what they say when it comes to the TSA. There are even TSA agents that post on there and those people argue with them when I have actually witnessed what the TSA person says to be the truth.
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Old 09-22-2011, 08:26 PM
 
8,268 posts, read 9,752,194 times
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When I hear someone claiming that the TSA agents they deal with are former McDonalds employees while relating an experience, it makes it clear that half-truths and exaggerations flow easily and habitually so I'm an instant skeptic.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:14 AM
 
Location: Airports all over the world
5,489 posts, read 5,538,396 times
Reputation: 94115
Quote:
Originally Posted by slackjaw View Post
When I hear someone claiming that the TSA agents they deal with are former McDonalds employees while relating an experience, it makes it clear that half-truths and exaggerations flow easily and habitually so I'm an instant skeptic.
Right after the TSA was created a local TV station was invited to do a spot on the very first training class being held for the Anchorage Intl Airport. The reporter was given the opportunity to interview a couple of the students. The first question she asked each student was "what did you do before hiring on with the TSA". The first student was a former cab driver and the second student was a clerk for 7-11. I was getting quite the chuckle over this until someone reminded me that I once was a clerk for 7-11.

When the TSA first came into exsistance my lack of respect for them was mainly due to the way the screeners behaved while working. Often I would see screeners at the check point acting like a bunch of junior high school students on a field trip. To make matters worse I do not think they were given the proper training to deal with the massive amount of resentment they were going to be exposed to. Anymore, for me, I simply see the screeners doing a job that was mandated by someone else. My disrespect for the TSA now is aimed at the TSA administration. The administration really should try working on the level of professionalism the TSA displays to the public instead of simply continuing on with the "we don't care what you think" attitude
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Old 09-23-2011, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Colorado
4,308 posts, read 10,901,916 times
Reputation: 4355
Whilst I believe the TSA is made up of human beings and is therefore full of fallible creatures that can and do make mistakes fairly regularly and seems to be staffed with a lot of people who don't give a crap, I also think that Americans really don't have a clue when it comes to airport security. Even after all these years. When I first moved here I couldn't believe the utter lack of security at any airport in this country. I think you guys are very very spoiled and whilst I don't enjoy the scanners or the patdowns or taking off my shoes, jacket, belt, etc, until they implement the model El Al uses for their flights, I will submit to those restrictions any day over running the risk of some lunatic getting on my plane.
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Old 09-24-2011, 06:54 AM
 
26,582 posts, read 50,134,130 times
Reputation: 12896
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdlee3 View Post
think that they should be immune to ANY type of screening if they're flying first class.
That's a pretty absurd thing to think. However... Many of those holding FC tickets are frequent flyers and have been for years. That is not the demographic that should concern the TSA. While that group should have their bags x-rayed and walk through the metal detector, the TSA should not be wasting their efforts harassing this group, especially those who hold either a Federal security clearance or a trusted traveler program card. They are actually less of a threat to national security than the average TSA agent.

And to the person who claims that the TSA agents didn't come from fast food or retail, that is not the case. I know of at least a dozen TSA agents at the Orlando airport who formerly worked in one of the fast food places or retail shops in the non-sterile concourse before being hired by the TSA. In several major cities, the workfare program more or less required people on public assistance apply for TSA jobs whether they were suited for public facing positions or not.

We regularly see news reports of TSA agents who have smuggled guns onto the sterile concourse, been arrested for stealing from bags during "inspections," the list goes on.

TSA is an agency run amok with top down problems. While there are some TSA agents who take their job seriously and treat people with respect while doing so, it's my experience and observation that they are the exception to the norm.

Thursday afternoon I saw a TSA agent who allowed so much luggage to pile up at the end of the x-ray system that bins were flipping over, sending wallets, coins, cell phones, shoes and more flying through the air and all over the ground. This was at the B/C checkpoint at PHL around 3:10pm. Then another agent came screaming up to the guy monitoring the x-ray and chewed him out in a loud and very disrespectful manner in front of 25 or so travelers.

Both were wrong and both should have immediately been removed for the remainder of the day at minimum--without pay. In any other organization, this level of incompetence and behavior would not be tolerated. But in the TSA it's not only tolerated, but it seems actively encouraged by superiors who seem far more concerned with creating an illusion in order to please stakeholders (politicians) and hold on to their own overpaid jobs than to actually keep us safe.
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