The TSA's Invasive Search Contest

All it takes to win is the right attitude and a pair of rubber gloves.

MEMORANDUM

To: All TSA Personnel

From: Paul Witchowski, American Federation of Government Employees General Secretary and Past President and Steward of AFGE Local 277, Barnstable, MA.

Dear Fellow Officers,

Many of you have written to ask me about the status of our Invasive Search Contest. Knowing this is a subject of great interest to all of you and that there has been a lot of rumors and innuendoes going around the "grapevine," I have decided to use this week’s newsletter to fill everybody in on the latest developments.

Ever since New Orleans Transportation Security Officer Thibodeaux Broussard confiscated cans of Play-Doh from 3-year-old Josh Pitney, our TSA rank-and-file have really been "bringing their A game." The name Janice Johnson is well known to all of us by now and needs no introduction. Janice is the Northwest Florida Regional Airport TSA officer who insisted late last month that the 95-year-old mother of Destin resident Jean Weber remove her dirty adult diaper that she was wearing so Janice and her fellow TSA officers could proceed with our Wheelchair-Bound Traveler Protocol (WBTP).

The story of officer Johnson’s dedication and professionalism has garnered a lot of attention with Google showing more than 3 million results if you search for the terms "TSA" and "diaper." As the front-line of defense against terrorism, foreign agents, and leukemia-riddled little old ladies in wheelchairs, TSA officers are usually the "unsung heroes" of homeland security but it is safe to say that is not the case with officer Johnson. We should all give a shout-out to Janice! You go, girl!

Needless to say Janice is now at the top of our Invasive Search Contest Leader Board. But there are several other strong contenders, including Mike Rogan of our Kansas City International Airport team, who gained fame far and wide back in May when he was photographed searching a baby’s diaper. Needless to say, Mike did not find any PETN or other high explosives though we hear he did detect the residue from an organic "stink bomb," ha ha! When you add that diaper search to the one in Florida it is no wonder people are beginning to say the TSA screening procedures are full of you-know-what!

Another strong contender is Becky Wilson of Bedford, Texas, who works at the Dallas-Fort Worth airport and had the privilege of searching former Miss USA pageant winner Susie Castillo. Sort of like the baby at KCI, Miss Castillo also made a "big stink" about how she was treated in late April, claiming she had been "molested." Of course all of us in the national-security field know better, don’t we?

Also in April TSA officer Yolanda Smith, who works at Louis Armstrong International Airport in New Orleans, was videotaped frisking six-year-old Anna Drexel. And TSA officers including Joe Dunbar were videotaped last November conducting a partial strip-search of a 10-year-old boy at Salt Lake City International Airport. Situations like these are simply not acceptable and I urge all of our members to contact their union reps to see if something can be done about this outrageous videotaping of TSA officers who are just doing their jobs.

Of course we also need to recognize Philip Davidson, the TSO whose pat-down of bladder-cancer survivor Thomas Sawyer at Detroit Metropolitan Airport in March broke the seal on Sawyer’s urostomy bag, covering him (Sawyer, not officer Davidson) in urine. Finally we have to give some recognition to Officer Donna Baumgartner at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport. Last month officer Baumgartner ordered 32-year flight attendant and breast-cancer survivor Cathy Bossi to take her prosthetic breast out of her bra. That one’s a keeper, folks!

Now maybe you are thinking, "Paul, there is just no way I can hope to win the invasive-search contest after hearing about cases like that." Don’t be too sure! Many of you have probably seen the recent stories about how the Department of Homeland Security says terrorist groups are looking for ways to hide explosive devices inside the human body by using surgical implants.

Just the other day I read a story in The Wall Street Journal about this. It said that implants are very common. And we all know that they are most common in the areas of the breasts, buttocks, and certain other portions of the anatomy. So I would say this means our Invasive Search Contest is still very far from over! With a little imagination, any one of you could be our Grand Prize Winner. All it takes is the right attitude and a pair of rubber gloves.

A. Barton Hinkle is a columnist at the Richmond Times-Dispatch. This article originally appeared at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

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  • ||

    I recently flew. No problems. Lucky me. I did see people going in the scanner at Laguardia, and a pat-down in Little Rock. At LGA, the terminal I was at had one scanner and it looked like they were pulling people into the scanner whenever it was available. I thought I was going to get scan but the grab someone out of another line. The pat-down was not as bad as the ones we hear about, maybe that has something to do with Arkansas, the bible belt, and god-fearing people. Little Rock does not have a scanner at this time.

  • Sku||

    When I flew out of memphis, every line appeared to have a scanner. There didn't seem to be any other choice.

  • VickyTric||

    When I flew out of Detroit, they were pulling people out of the line for the scanner when it got bogged down to go through the metal detector. When I got up there, I said I wanted to opt-out and the girl was surprised. She had to call a male TSA agent to do my search.

    She almost had me go through without even going through the metal detector until the male agent turned around and said no, I had to go through that too. He asked me why I wouldn't go through the scanner. I told him I didn't feel the government had the right to order a scan. I could tell he was basically using interrogation techniques to try and "figure me out".

    I was severely disappointed that I was the only one willing to protest their invasion of privacy.

  • TSA||

    some of these fat rolls could hide sticks of dynamite

  • Mainer||

    Prediction: since explosives can be surgically implanted, everyone will be going through the scanner soon enough. No opt out for the pat down.

  • ||

    Which will be extra special awesome considering that the Rapiscan cannot detect implanted explosives.

    MRIs for all!

  • fish||

    While you're checking could you scan the right knee.....it's been acting up recently.

  • ||

    Prediction:

    Flying will require a strip search, anal probe, X-rays and not even a kiss.

    Tony will rack up the frequent-flier points.

  • TSA||

    u forgot waterboarding while being sodomized

  • ||

    Some people pay for that kind of service.

  • Bingo||

    Fun fact: In PHX SkyHarbor, they don't use the metal detectors anymore, it's all scanners all the time. So some guy could walk through with a hand grenade shoved up his ass and they would never find it.

  • ||

    "" everyone will be going through the scanner soon enough. No opt out for the pat down.""

    This is what it will be. IMO, it's not about anti-terrorism per se, it's about greater security in general. From an anti-contraband point of view, the newer security measures have been great. Terrorism is mostly an excuse to get the citizenry to accecpt the new measures.

  • ||

    I can't wait until choosing not to fly is deemed interstate commerce, and I must therefore be forced to use airports for interstate travel and be herded into one of these scanners with a cattle-prod.

    Oh, and yeah, workers just doing their jobs and hard working honest people, they don't like it, and write your congressman and whatnot.

  • PIRS||

    "Oh, and yeah, workers just doing their jobs and hard working honest people,"

    Do you mean the TSA thugs?

    I can just hear them : "Befehl ist Befehl"

  • West Texas||

    workers just doing their jobs and hard working honest people,

    Fuck that in the asshole.

    They are dishonorable Khmer thugs hiding behind a plastic badge.

    Digging a ditch is "honest work," harassing the bourgeoisie just because you can is not.

  • OO||

    khmer thugs? waay over the top dude

  • West Texas||

    No it's not. It's the exact same principle.

    They hire TSA agents the underclass because those types don't question authority and are too fucking ignorant to realize why they're doing is wrong... Not to mention that for the first time in their lives they finally get to legally poke and prod and bully people from a higher station in life.

  • GroundTruth||

    How bout 'Quisling'?

  • ||

    "digging a ditch is 'honest work'",
    I remember you saying that in a thread a while back.
    I must use this from now on.

  • ||

    " I must therefore be forced to use airports for interstate travel and be herded into one of these scanners with a cattle-prod."

    Guess where the cattle prod goes!

  • ||

    Just wait 'til the TSA agents get guns!

    Won't there be some merriment, then?

  • ||

    You do not have the right to stand perpendicular in a scanner.

  • Citizen Simpson||

    That will never get old.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Sorry -- forgot to take the onion off my belt.

  • Zuo||

    Alright I have a question. When babies shit their daipers, people evidently are alerted, due to the rancid smell. And they say "ah that baby needs a-changin'". I would assume old peoples diapers use the same technology. So we got a disgusting old fossil wanting to leak fecal (even worse than fart) fumes all over a plane? I'd fuckin say shes a terrorist.

  • ||

    It is fuckin unsanitary and awful. Get the fucking thing changed. I don't want to smell that on a plane.

  • ||

    The thought of having to deal with these TSA morons is depressing. I have recently increased my "no-fly" drive time to 7 hours.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Mine has been about 8-10 hours for several years now. 500 miles? No problem - I'll drive.

  • sarcasmic||

    Everyone is a terrorist until they prove that they are not.

  • West Texas||

    My family is relocating to a new city next week and on Monday I get to fly with my two kids (aged 2 and 4) for the first time in their lives.

    I am not looking forward to it and I'm scared to death that something is going to happen with them with TSA that will make me snap and force them to see Daddy get arrested.

    It should not be that way in America. What the fuck has happened to us?

  • ||

    "It should not be that way in America. What the fuck has happened to us?"

    You voted for a Republican. Or a Democrat. One or the other. But you did it.*

    CB
    *Unless you, like me, voted Libertarian

  • ||

    ""What the fuck has happened to us?""

    We saw an event that we felt should never ever happen again no matter how high the cost.

    No longer home of the brave. Unless brave is the new word for pants wetter.

  • AlmightyJB||

    "What the fuck has happened to us?"

    Evidently not enough 'cause it just keeps getting worse. Not sure what it's going to take. Unfortunately it's usually when people have nothing left to lose when talk turns to action. Let's hope it tkae that much.

  • ||

    We traded a little essential liberty for safety and security. Until we had no more essential liberty left.

    Freedom and liberty are worth more than safety and security; if you hold those two values dear, you will be safe and secure in person and property.

    Remember that in November of each year and let it, not party or whether or not you can walk along the public way in flip-flops be your guiding principles.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    So... why hasn't Obama's administration reined in TSA abuses?

  • ||

    What abuses?? You don't have a Carbon Tax Level Breathalizer to blow into yet do you??
    Well, do you??

  • Eduard van Haalen||

    Like the ship captain said to the Malayan pirate: "Don't touch my junk!"

  • ||

    Don't touch my junk, you TSA Punk! I'm in a funk and never should have left my bunk!

  • Réplique Montres||

  • Mark||

    Secession. America is too big - there are far too many morons here now. American needs to be split into at least 2 separate countries. That way, the socialist nit-wits of the Northeast, the Great Lakes, and the Left Coast can have Big Brother give them their cavity searches and the rest of us can go on with life as independent adults.

  • TSA Submission||

    I just received a nomination from a TSA worker. I relay it below..

    "After getting tired of looking at young, hot ladies pulled into scanners, I came up with a great idea. I waited until the paralyzed 82-yr old in the wheelchair with her seeing-eye dog showed up. I went upstairs, killed her dog, and told her she needed the patdown. After the usual genital and breast fondling, I used her OWN cane (awesome innovation!) to explore her anal cavity per the new SOP under the SSI (Secure and Sensitive Information).

    Top that! Sincerely, Dick Gyzinya."

  • Burke101||

    Here's an idea: let's install pornscanners at the offices of the TSA and DHS. Every time one of the gropers goes to or leaves work, they get scanned--for their safety, of course. Then we broadcast the imagery via the Internet to show how much we are concerned about fighting terrorism.

    And yet another idea: if the TSA is soooo concerned about fighting terrorism, then let's send them all to Afghanistan to do something useful, like clearing landmines. Couldn't you just see Pistole and Mapolitano probing not children but instead for IEDs? Then broadcast the results on pay per view.

    http://home.earthlink.net/~jam.....a/id4.html

  • ||

    Imagine how the younger generations will mature, accustomed to being fondled by government agents.

  • ||

    I'm pretty sure all the above comments are written by people who have never been responsible for safeguarding the public. If it was your responsibility to keep a plane from getting blown up, how would you go about it?

  • Doug||

    Prior to boarding, make certain that travelers are aware of the risk of being killed by a terrorist then leave it up to them to decide whether that risk is worth taking.

    Given that the risk of being killed by a terrorist is a tiny fraction of the risk of being killed in an automobile accident, I'm guessing that very few will change their travel plans.

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  • ||

    Bilbo

    You sound like the naive type if you actually believe that any part of the government is 'protecting' you from anything.

    The Global War On Terror is a fraud of epic proportions, and its poster-child is DHS and TSA.

  • ||

    Eva Destruction,

    I didn't say anything about the government protecting you. I asked, "If it was your responsibility to keep a plane from getting blown up, how would you go about it?" It would be interesting to hear an answer to that question but everybody seems more interested in talking about how their constitutional right to get on an airplane without being screened has been violated. What amendment was that again?
    When you say that the war on terror is a fraud, do you mean that acts of terrorism have not occurred? Please explain.

  • Keith||

    That would be the Fourth amendment, protecting me from unreasonable searches. To protect a plane from being blown up I might look for terrorists, rather than bombs much like the Israelis do quite successfully. I don't know about Eva, but when I say the war on terror is a fraud I mean that the TSA has never stopped a terrorist, the wars in the middle east make us less safe, and that the use of National Security Letters is blatantly unconstitutional.

  • Kinda late||

    Good points Keith.

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  • Tha Grapevine||

    Its good read magazines which has interesting and full details. Like me, as a reader, really like to read that content that gives me more information, especially to the topics that I’m interested with.

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