MENU

Reason.com

Free Minds & Free Markets

NFL Player Slams TSA 'Assholes' for Spilling Dead Mother's Ashes

Giants lineman A.J. Francis was enraged after the TSA treated his mother's remains carelessly. An apology from the agency did little to help.

New York Giants defensive tackle A.J. Francis took to Twitter furiously after the "pieces of garbage" at the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) caused his dead mother's ashes to spill all over his clothes.

Francis, whose mother died unexpectedly late last month, posted a photo showing several articles of clothing covered in what appear to be ashes. A TSA "Notice of Baggage Inspection" lies on top of his clothes. He wasn't happy:

The TSA apologized in a pair of tweets, but it wasn't enough for Francis:

RICK WILKING/REUTERS/NewscomRICK WILKING/REUTERS/NewscomFrancis later noted that he has no issue with the TSA inspecting his luggage. It was the agency's inability to ensure the ashes wouldn't spill everywhere that he called "the most asinine & irresponsible shit I have ever seen."

The TSA's website suggests that passengers transporting cremated remains use containers "made of a lighter weight material" in order to "facilitate screening." But regardless of the container type, the agency says that "Out of respect for the deceased, TSA officers will not open a container." The agency also claims to "treat crematory remains with respect."

Photo Credit: RICK WILKING/REUTERS/Newscom

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • HGW xx/7||

    I would say that "asshole" is a title the TSA has certainly urn-ed.

  • Cy||

    +1

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Tyrannical
    Shit-swizzling
    Assholes.

  • Johnimo||

    TSA check points should not be 'interred" without adequate preparation. Furthermore, their rules are nothing for you to be "coffin" at. One should also try to limit any "dead" weight.

  • Citizen X||

    Government Agency Representative Apologizes Insincerely, Blatantly Lies; Film at 11, 12, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10

  • Shirley Knott||

    The TSA also claims to be for our benefit.
    Yeah right.
    Worthless security theater. This kind of shit is just that -- shit.

  • Citizen X||

    Sometimes security theater looks an awful lot like just getting your junk fondled in public.

  • Fairbanks||

    30 minutes ago I went through enhanced screening because I lost my ID. NOTHING will get past that type of pat down. Very rigorous....

  • Citizen X||

    Last time i flew i got the patdown because the scanner detected possible explosives in my pants(, ladies). I was gonna make a joke about how the dude should buy me dinner first, but he did NOT look like he would be amused, and i didn't feel like getting taken to the back room for a more rigorous search of my person.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    I was gonna make a joke about how the dude should buy me dinner first, but he did NOT look like he would be amused

    Yeah, they're just like cops in that they really have no sense of humor at all. I suspect that the majority of their training is perfecting that faux "tuff gai" look.

  • Longtobefree||

    "Francis later noted that he has no issue with the TSA inspecting his luggage. "

    Really? Then you have no right to complain.

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    No. That does not follow at all.

  • Longtobefree||

    The TSA's website suggests that passengers transporting cremated remains use containers "made of a lighter weight material" in order to "facilitate screening." But regardless of the container type, the agency says that "Out of respect for the deceased, TSA officers will not open a container." The agency also claims to "treat crematory remains with respect."

    The first sentence says the next two are bullshit.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Or is that a signal to smuggle stuff in an urn?

  • Citizen X||

    Since the TSA statement said that officers are trained not to open urns, and yet they did anyway, i don't think that's gonna be much help.

  • Don't look at me.||

    More money for training needed!

  • Citizen X||

    I think you've identified the con!

  • Jayburd||

    How else are they gonna frisk his mom?

  • $park¥ The Misanthrope||

    NFL Player Slams TSA Assholes would be a much more interesting article.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    "My Uncle Jimbo has a ton of those movies in his dresser drawer."

  • Rich||

    "Out of respect for the deceased, TSA officers will not open a container."

    "However, our abundance of caution for the safety of the flying public overrides this. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation."

  • Juvenile Bluster||

    "You can't professionalize unless you federalize!" - Sen. Tom Dashcle (D-SD), on the creation of the TSA.

    Setting up a huge federal agency whose employees can't be fired pretty much whatever they do and that has a 90%+ failure rate sure has made us safer!

  • IceTrey||

    Well I now know how I'll be smuggling that next kilo of cocaine.

  • ||

    The TSA's website suggests that passengers transporting cremated remains use containers "made of a lighter weight material" in order to "facilitate screening."

    What if this conflicts with my libertarian religious beliefs?

  • Longtobefree||

    What if it does? You something special?
    Equal protection under the law means equal abuse by the law.

    (except for socialist favorite groups)

  • General_Tso||

    What type of container were the ashes in?

    Where they clearly labeled as such?

    I'm the last person to defend any government organization, but the stories I've read (here and elsewhere) were long on outrage and short on facts.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Facts are boring. Outrage sells.

  • creech||

    TSA outrage sells. Yet I wonder how many of us, or reason writers, would be willing to travel on commercial airliners where there is no security check of any kind?

  • Citizen X||

    Fortunately, there are many, many other possibilities besides "security provided by incompetent buffoonish federal lifers" and "no security at all."

  • Johnimo||

    Give the cabin crew a nice, big handgun .... and let's roll this puppy out onto the flight line. You pay your money and take your chances.

  • Longtobefree||

    Unions, Democrats, hatred of gun control, wild shots; maybe not.

  • Don't look at me.||

    Used to fly when there was no "security" check. And you could smoke on the plane. Way back in the '80s. Good times.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Yet I wonder how many of us, or reason writers, would be willing to travel on commercial airliners where there is no security check of any kind?

    I would. Airline hijacking in the US were very rare events prior to security theater. Also, this is such a perfect example of the false choice fallacy, they should probably use it in formal logic textbooks.

  • creech||

    I'm sure the American people will rush to embrace 1)totally open borders, 2)jihadists, 3)no security to board a plane that will be flying at 36,000 feet when an asshole involuntary celibate punk decides that instead of shooting up a school, he will blow up a plane. Sure, let each airline take care of its own security. But I'm not flying on the one that can't get any insurance because it refuses even a simple security check.

  • The Last American Hero||

    I would.

  • Rossami||

    I did before. I would again.

    TSA doesn't do "security". They never have. The best they can manage is "security theater".

  • Longtobefree||

    It seems that their job is to create a long line of soft targets outside of the "secure" (cough, cough, puke) area in airports.

  • Johnimo||

    You are absolutely correct, Rossami. Does anyone really think some asshole with a big handgun can't get on the plane your on. All the security personnel can easily be killed by determined hijackers. Once on the flight line who will stop them? You, with your big computer bag? Hardly!

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    I would take a security check by the owners of the plane, because they have a lot more to lose if they do it poorly.

    If TSA agents do something wrong or otherwise screw up, it's because they are underfunded and that is cause for more money to be given to them.

  • jcw||

    It's an NFL player so he probably fucked something up. He was kneeling when he labeled the urn so he accidentally said "lead mon" instead of "dead mom" so the TSA agent thought it was ammunition.

  • Longtobefree||

    What are you interested in? Facts, or ad revenue?

  • shortviking||

    TSA should be dissolved and all its evil little agents thrown in prison.

  • Just Say'n||

    Eh, let's just send them to the unemployment line instead. No need to increase the prison population

  • croaker||

    Prisons need some new meat for the lifers to enjoy.

  • SRoach||

    The FedGov should institute a hiring freeze, and as agencies get too small to function, first drop rolls to streamline those agencies, and roll them into other agencies as their manpower gets too small for even that, until there are no more agencies. This keeps the current careerists employed for a few more decades, but eventually does away with the program.

    Or, the FedGov should create multiple, duplicate, agencies, and allow those who must be under them to choose their overlords, with the funding going to whoever gets the customers, rather than the collars. If the people who have to put up with this, at the first line of contact, are able to opt for Alt.TSA over TSA, and can change from one to the other without too much hassle, (and there are, enforced, rules against collusion on the rules and practices of the two, or more, agencies,) both will up their game to be the agency that airports select for their screening. Think of as school choice for law enforcement.

  • Citizen X||

    Dissolve the federal government into a number of competing private organizations? That's a good start.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Francis later noted that he has no issue with the TSA inspecting his luggage. It was the agency's inability to ensure the ashes wouldn't spill everywhere that he called "the most asinine & irresponsible shit I have ever seen."

    So he's fine with warrant-less searches of his property for no reason other than he was getting on an airplane and exercising his right to travel? As for this being "the most asinine & irresponsible shit [he's] have ever seen," just wait a while: I'm sure they'll top themselves soon enough. These are people than in a sane world wouldn't be trusted to work the deep fryer at the airport McDonald's, yet we're supposed to believe that these mouth breathers are keeping us "safe."

  • Pat001||

    Government bureaucrats like soft targets. They didn't get Mohamed Atta or any of the 9/11 hijackers, the shoe bomber or the underwear bomber, but they'll get you and you mom's cremated ashes.

  • Rossami||

    Disband the TSA.

  • croaker||

    TSA delenda est

  • Harvard||

    So, it's this guy's opinion that his mother's earthly vehicle can be barbecued into nothingness and the meager leftovers ground into powder, but the remaining dust deserves anyone's solemn respect? I'm missing the logic. Pay his dry cleaning bill and bid him adieu.

  • Atlas Slugged||

    you must be a joy at parties....

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    The least he could have done was buy a seat for her to sit in

  • majil||

    Forget abolishing ICE we need to start with the TSA .It is a complete fucking joke and total waste of tax money

  • I am the 0.000000013%||

    You can take any two government agencies and slot them into your sentence, and it will still make perfect sense.

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online