Monday, February 23, 2004

TSA Detention Is No Joke

This anecdote about Larry Klayman is interesting:
Klayman was just about to go through the metal detector at National last fall en route to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on United Flight 2899, when he announced that the package he was carrying (a little container for his cat) was not a bomb.

According to another waiting passenger nearby, Klayman told the screeners that the cat wasn't a terrorist and didn't have a bomb. With that, we're told, he was instantly taken out of line by the security people and put in handcuffs.

He was then apparently taken somewhere for questioning, where agents most likely didn't recognize him or realize that he was famous. He was eventually released, and he hopped a later flight.
I'm having a hard time imagining why it would be useful to handcuff someone merely for saying that he did not have a bomb. The airport security need not assume that people are innocent until proven guilty. But I don't see how protesting one's innocence is a positive indication of guilt. I thought that sort of thing happened only in movie parodies, like Meet the Parents, as in the scene where Ben Stiller's character gets arrested for saying, "It's not like I have a bomb."


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