My refusal to "do as I was told" at ORD.

Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by RosemaryT, Nov 18, 2011.

  1. RosemaryT

    RosemaryT Original Member

    On November 5th, I flew back home to Norfolk from Chicago's O'hare airport, and I started dreading it a good 24 hours before my flight because I knew that ORD had the backscatter x-rays.

    Despite my best prayers, I got picked for the NoS. An unusually obnoxious large, overweight TSA thug instructed me to enter the magical radiation box. I told him as succinctly as possible that I had read that these boxes were not calibrated nor checked, and I would not subject my body to unknown amounts of radiation. I said it good and loud, for the peanut gallery.

    He called for a female attendant and then turned his attentions back to me. I was told to stand NEXT to the device!!! I looked at that tiny spot (it was a small space and in the travel lanes), and could see that I was actually being punished for opting out.

    The spot where I was ordered to stand would have left me standing RIGHT NEXT to every soul who entered the magic box, and for someone like me who HATES crowds, it would have been very unpleasant. Plus, it would have literally required any passengers entering the box brush past my bosoms to do so. And it was ridiculous to place me there.

    So I said, "I'm unwilling to be irradiated by that device due to health concerns, and I'm sure as heck not going to stand next to it while it emits unknown amounts of radiation. I'll stand back here or over there, but I am not standing next to this device."

    The large man then bellowed (and I quote), "M'am, you have to do what I tell you to do. Now stand here while we get a female attendant."

    Wow, that really raised my hackles.

    In my most calm and authoritative voice, I said, "Summon your supervisor. NOW."

    He looked SO disgusted that one of the sheeple had made a little noise.

    He summoned a supervisor and an older man appeared while the TSA lackey whispered something in his ear. Then he came over to me and I explained my position briefly, and that I was willing to wait almost anywhere, but NOT next to the machine. The older man then said, "That's fine," and then looked at the lackey like, "What in the (expletive deleted) is wrong with you?" and then toddled off.

    I'm *HOT* that we're expected to stand NEXT to the box when we decline. It really does come off as a punishment for questioning the goons.

  2. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Probably a wise move -- my recollection from one article is that they leak the most radiation to the side.
  3. FriendlySkies

    FriendlySkies Member

    This is how I got into an argument with Aiello at ORD. Told her I would not stand next to the RapeScanner for two reasons. 1) Watching my bags exiting the shute, and 2) health risks.. We had a little fun with her supervisor :rolleyes:
  4. Elizabeth Conley

    Elizabeth Conley Original Member

    The supervisor's reaction is very good news for all of us who are concerned for our safety in the radiation zone of these backscatter Xray devices. Let's take this as progress, and be thankful. It means future travelers should be able to opt out without getting an even higher radiation dose then they would have suffered through knuckling under for the thugs.
  5. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Yeah, but you know how haphazard it is. One decent supervisor somewhere doesn't mean they exist everywhere, or even at most places.
  6. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    Sadly, I disagree. Perhaps this would happen if said passengers know enough to call for a supervisor and if the same supervisor answers that call. I'd wager that the screener who told Rosemary to stand by the NoS, is still telling opt-outs to stand there, regardless of the supervisor's actions.
  7. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    The last time I flew -- September 2010 -- the scanners had only recently been implemented at BWI. I had known about them, of course, for months, and knew I would opt out. The gropes hadn't been implemented nationwide yet, only at Las Vegas and Boston. So when dozens of people before me simply walked through the metal detector, I figured I was safe.


    The TSA agent suddenly pulled the cord across the lane, blocking my access, and directed me to the strip-search scanner. I declined. She and the rest of her cohorts started pressuring me -- "I don't know why, it's safe, it's easier than any other method, it's less hassle," blah blah blah.

    Then she made me wait beside the baggage x-ray box, the one on the conveyer belt.

    And wait. And wait. And wait. And wait.

    Power and control. That's all it's about, that's all it's ever been about, that's all it ever will be about. Power and control. And millions of people make it easy for them.
    Fisher1949 likes this.
  8. RosemaryT

    RosemaryT Original Member

    That's what really gets me going. I *always* opt out and yet I never see anyone else opting out. We really have become mindless, haven't we? Permitting a strip search of that last vestige - the very epitome of our most intimate of personal freedoms - our OWN BODY, and yet we put our heads down and move blithely along in the "security" lines.

    Do people NOT see where this is going?

    BTW, thanks for the many nice responses. :) It is very isolating at the airport, when the TSA goons are screeching at you, and you're the lone voice in the wilderness, not automatically kowtowing to their insane demands. It's gratifying to come here and know that you're not alone, and that you're not the ONLY ONE who thinks this is a symptom of a government gone mad.
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  9. Caradoc

    Caradoc Original Member

    I'd have to ask the screener, "Are you undereducated, stupid, or just a bald-faced liar?"

    But that sort of logorrhea is why I avoid the TSA entirely by not flying. I have no desire to end up being manhandled by corrupt "law enforcement" officers on the say-so of the TSA thugs.
  10. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    I stopped flying after that. That was my last flight. The gropes were instituted a month later. Have taken no end of (expletive deleted) for the decision from family & friends.
  11. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    I hear ya. I could write a tome on this subject.
  12. Fisher1949

    Fisher1949 Original Member Coach

    Great job in asserting your rights.

    It's disgusting that so many sheeple look down when the TSA thugs attack an innocent passenger or assume it is the pax fault. This blind deference to "authority" is the same societal failure that allowed the Nazis to send Jews and Poles to the "showers".

    I heard someone say the other day that "there is no good time to do the wrong thing or wrong time to do the right thing" At least you know you did the right thing. ^
    jtodd and Lisa Simeone like this.

Share This Page