Ohio (GREED) – So I’m at John Glenn Airport in Columbus.
I’m going through the TSA. Shoes shed, belt unbuckled, dignity dropped for the privilege of leaving the land of the free and the home of the brave. There’s an ironic little American flag hanging on the x-ray machine.
My blood is boiling. It’s pretty normal when I go through security, I avoid flying whenever I can. I obey the orders: A gesture to feed your bag into the privacy invader, please step into the cancer machine, hands up, step through, good job white citizen, you are a serf.
I want to get out as fast as I can. My fiance (who is black) has a blue nitrile glove run through her hair to check for… bombs, guns, garrote wire, anything that might be hiding there. She passes the test. I guess my long hair and bandana are safe though…???
The black lady with the kids behind us gets to be pat down. They wanted to pat her kids down, but she wasn’t having that. The blue rapists surround her and intimidate her into being their victim instead.
The next guy (black) also gets a search.
The cancer machine is not good enough for dark skin, I guess they get another layer of molestation to make up for a resistance to skin cancer.
My fiance states that she would feel better if a few white people would get patted down. I point that this is equality in slavery, rather than in freedom. She is understandably not thrilled with the analogy. An Uncle Tom flavored smurf arrives to do the culturally-sensitive fondling of the mother transmuting the abuse of her kids.
“It reminds me of prison.”
I got to talk to the lady briefly and point out the not-so-random searches. She says she felt “violated” which I would say is appropriate. She had a plane to catch and so did I, so I bugged off.
So I’m typing this initial half of article in the Buckeye Hall of Fame in CMH, reflecting on other experiences with the TSA. I’m thinking of a member of the Nez Perce tribe and guy I worked with who went to prison at LWS. We were watching some old lady in a wheelchair get patted down. Felon: “It reminds me of prison.” Nez Perce: “That’s the government for you.”
I’m reminded of boarding in DAW, everyone huddled together without shoes, belts, basically naked mentally.
CDG was the total opposite. Customs? No questions. I was basically waved through. Security on the way out? Metal detector, no tumor machine. The single guard was even kind enough to change his gloves before poking through anything.
Contrast to BOS where citizens are treated like cattle through three layers of security before being dumped back out and into the lobby to be processed again by the Thin Blue Gloves of Freedom. The line at the Louvre moved faster.
Every cancer machine, metal detector, and checkpoint is adorned with an American flag, so at least you know your invasion is government approved.
Oh, TSA searched my girlfriend and the black child behind me as well, even after crawling through the scanner. So kudos for being consistently racist. Is it part of the TSA training? “White is alright, brown gets pat down!” (TSA mantra)
While we were there, airport security called the police on a mother whose kids were having a tantrum. Three state troopers showed up to escort her out. Oh yeah, the children were black.
God, it makes me want to go back to France where I can smoke Cuban cigars with dignity.
So what can you do? You can call out racism when you see it. That’s an easy one. I’m hesitant to endorse a form of protest I have not personally tried, but John E. Brennan stripped in protest at a TSA checkpoint in PDX with mixed results.
Also, never encourage an abridgement of freedom for security. Benjamin Franklin once said: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”
This report was prepared exclusively for Greed Media.