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Old 03-28-2008, 11:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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TSA forces girl to remove nipple piercings

Quote:
Source: LATimes
View: Traveler says TSA forced her to remove nipple piercings at Texas airport

Traveler says TSA forced her to remove nipple piercings at Texas airport
From the Associated Press

7:10 AM PDT, March 28, 2008

A Texas woman who said she was forced to remove a nipple ring with pliers in order to board an airplane called Thursday for an apology by federal security agents and a civil rights investigation.

"I wouldn't wish this experience upon anyone," Mandi Hamlin said at a news conference. "My experience with TSA was a nightmare I had to endure. No one deserves to be treated this way."

Hamlin, 37, said she was trying to board a flight from Lubbock to Dallas on Feb. 24 when she was scanned by a Transportation Security Administration agent after passing through a larger metal detector without problems.

The female TSA agent used a handheld detector that beeped when it passed in front of Hamlin's chest, the Dallas-area resident said.

Hamlin said she told the woman she was wearing nipple piercings. The agent then called over her male colleagues, one of whom said she would have to remove the jewelry, Hamlin said.

Hamlin said she could not remove them and asked whether she could instead display her pierced breasts in private to the female agent. But several other male officers told her she could not board her flight until the jewelry was out, she said.

She was taken behind a curtain and managed to remove one bar-shaped piercing but had trouble with the second, a ring.

"Still crying, she informed the TSA officer that she could not remove it without the help of pliers, and the officer gave a pair to her," said Hamlin's attorney, Gloria Allred, reading from a letter she sent Thursday to the director of the TSA's Office of Civil Rights and Liberties. Allred is a well-known Los Angeles lawyer who often represents high-profile claims.

Applying pliers to the torso of a mannequin that had a peach-colored bra with the rings on it, Hamlin showed reporters at the news conference how she took off the second ring.

She said she heard male TSA agents snickering as she took out the ring. She was scanned again and was allowed to board even though she still was wearing a belly button ring.

"After nipple rings are inserted, the skin can often heal around the piercing, and the rings can be extremely difficult and painful to remove," Allred said in the letter.

TSA officials said they are investigating to see whether its policies were followed.

"Our security officers are well-trained to screen individuals with body piercings in sensitive areas with dignity and respect while ensuring a high level of security," the agency said in a statement.

On its Web site, the TSA warns that passengers "may be additionally screened because of hidden items such as body piercings, which alarmed the metal detector."

"If you are selected for additional screening, you may ask to remove your body piercing in private as an alternative to a pat-down search," the site says.

Hamlin would have accepted a "pat-down" had it been offered, Allred said.

If an alarm does sound, "until that is resolved, we're not going to let them go through the checkpoint, no matter what they're wearing or where they're wearing it," said TSA spokesman Dwayne Baird in Salt Lake City.

People routinely pass through security wearing wedding rings without problems, and it might take a larger bit of metal to trigger an alarm, Baird said.

Hamlin filed a complaint, but the TSA's customer service manager at the Lubbock airport concluded the screening was handled properly, Allred said.

Hamlin wants an apology from the TSA and an investigation by the agency's civil rights office.

Allred said she might consider legal action if the TSA does not apologize.

Hamlin was publicly humiliated and has "undergone an enormous amount of physical pain to have the nipple rings reinserted" because of scar tissue, Allred said.

Hamlin said her piercings have never set off an airport metal detector.

"The conduct of TSA was cruel and unnecessary," Allred wrote. "The last time that I checked a nipple was not a dangerous weapon."
A nipple is not a dangerous weapon, but a rouse to distract an agent is dangerous. While I'm not so interested in the TSA since we have open porous borders. The TSA is in place and their rules are and should be enforced. The individual needs to take some responsibilty here.

I can't tell you how careful Skogafoss and I plan our clothing making sure to not wear shirts with metal buttons, some of our dress shoes have metal inserts for shape, we don't wear those.

At what point do we as a society hand it back to the individual and state emphatically, "Sorry, no YOU are responsible for why this happened to you."?
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Old 03-28-2008, 11:44 AM   #2 (permalink)
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You and I had exact opposite reactions to this article. Mine was "further proof that the TSA is full of jackbooted thugs".

I travel for work. A lot. It's a rare week when I'm not in at least 3 different airports. I see the TSA folks a lot, and most of them are pretty good about understanding that most of us what to get out of security as quickly as possible. It's the ones that decide to liven up their days by toying with the traveling public (and make no mistake that it happens a lot) that give them all a bad image.

This is an obvious exception. Why does the TSA get to dictate her personal body modification choices? I honestly can't think of a much more personal decision. Of course she is responsible, but it's not like this is a particularly rare choice. Forcing her to remove semi-permanently implanted jewelry without giving her the option of a patdown (which is apparently procedure) is far too intrusive. The government has essentially told her that her freedom of movement is constrained because of her semi-permanent rings. The charter of the TSA is to keep anything that could be used to hijack or destroy an airplane from boarding it. Nipple rings, even if they were thrown through the engines, couln't do that.

I suppose that the next time I am in Casper, WY and set off the alarm because of the screws in my wrist, I should just cut off my hand? Or should the little old lady behind me detach her replacement hip? These are things implanted in the body! C'mon!
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Last edited by The_Jazz; 03-28-2008 at 11:45 AM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 03-28-2008, 11:53 AM   #3 (permalink)
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God I love nipples. I really, really do. What about TSA?

Well jesus fucking christ, it's a nipple ring, not a bomb. TSA should fire the people who detained her.
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Old 03-28-2008, 11:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cynthetiq
The individual needs to take some responsibilty here.

...

At what point do we as a society hand it back to the individual and state emphatically, "Sorry, no YOU are responsible for why this happened to you."?
Holy smokes, are you serious?

A nipple ring. I think that lady has every right to be pissed off. Shit, I'm pissed off just reading about it. To my knowledge there have been no known instances of body jewelry being used as a means to hijack or down an airplane. What's next? Sun glasses?

The fact that they let her keep her navel piercing in is the clincher. I mean, I could see if they were being consistent in their dumbshittery, because hey, that's the kind of dumbshittery you can predict and rely on. I don't think it is reasonable to expect this woman to take responsibility for not expecting TSA to behave like jerkoffs in a seemingly completely random way.

Last edited by filtherton; 03-28-2008 at 11:59 AM..
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Old 03-28-2008, 11:57 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Jazz
You and I had exact opposite reactions to this article. Mine was "further proof that the TSA is full of jackbooted thugs".

I travel for work. A lot. It's a rare week when I'm not in at least 3 different airports. I see the TSA folks a lot, and most of them are pretty good about understanding that most of us what to get out of security as quickly as possible. It's the ones that decide to liven up their days by toying with the traveling public (and make no mistake that it happens a lot) that give them all a bad image.

This is an obvious exception. Why does the TSA get to dictate her personal body modification choices? I honestly can't think of a much more personal decision. Of course she is responsible, but it's not like this is a particularly rare choice. Forcing her to remove semi-permanently implanted jewelry without giving her the option of a patdown (which is apparently procedure) is far too intrusive. The government has essentially told her that her freedom of movement is constrained because of her semi-permanent rings. The charter of the TSA is to keep anything that could be used to hijack or destroy an airplane from boarding it. Nipple rings, even if they were thrown through the engines, couln't do that.

I suppose that the next time I am in Casper, WY and set off the alarm because of the screws in my wrist, I should just cut off my hand? Or should the little old lady behind me detach her replacement hip? These are things implanted in the body! C'mon!
It doesn't matter if it's implanted. My mothery-in-law's hip set off the alarms. She was asked to step aside, explained that she had an artificial hip. Didn't matter, they patted her down. She's freakin 76 years old and skims the ruler at 5' tall!
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Jazz
You and I had exact opposite reactions to this article. Mine was "further proof that the TSA is full of jackbooted thugs".

I travel for work. A lot. It's a rare week when I'm not in at least 3 different airports. I see the TSA folks a lot, and most of them are pretty good about understanding that most of us what to get out of security as quickly as possible. It's the ones that decide to liven up their days by toying with the traveling public (and make no mistake that it happens a lot) that give them all a bad image.

This is an obvious exception. Why does the TSA get to dictate her personal body modification choices? I honestly can't think of a much more personal decision. Of course she is responsible, but it's not like this is a particularly rare choice. Forcing her to remove semi-permanently implanted jewelry without giving her the option of a patdown (which is apparently procedure) is far too intrusive. The government has essentially told her that her freedom of movement is constrained because of her semi-permanent rings. The charter of the TSA is to keep anything that could be used to hijack or destroy an airplane from boarding it. Nipple rings, even if they were thrown through the engines, couln't do that.

I suppose that the next time I am in Casper, WY and set off the alarm because of the screws in my wrist, I should just cut off my hand? Or should the little old lady behind me detach her replacement hip? These are things implanted in the body! C'mon!
I have always understood that travellers with metal implants have some sort of documentation from a medical doctor. Maybe that's too much movies.

When I go to any amusment parks they state that people with earrings will not be allowed to board any rollercoasters with certain types of headrestraints. People with those humongous doughnuts in their ears tend to take offense to that and think it isn't right. There is a real reason for it, I'm sure your industry is one of the dictators of why they cannot wear such things.

I don't believe that I am stating that the TSA did the right thing here, just stating that the inconvenience this young woman had she is partly responsible for. Millions of women without piercings but underwire bras are moved to the side and checked.

When I did not remove my laptop from the bag and was pulled to the side, that was my fault, not the fault of the hijackers who created the whole mess in the first place.

Which is why my question at the bottom is what it is:
Quote:
At what point do we as a society hand it back to the individual and state emphatically, "Sorry, no YOU are responsible for why this happened to you."?
Let me further add that because I don't like to be bothered to remember to remove my laptop and have to deal with the extra crap if I do seem to forget. I no longer pack it if I believe I can get away with not having it for the duration of the trip.
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Last edited by Cynthetiq; 03-28-2008 at 12:12 PM..
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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If she volunteered or did not refuse to be strip searched (by a female guard of course) instead of removing the nipple ring, then the airport security acted improperly and should be heavily fined.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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A nipple is not a dangerous weapon, but a rouse to distract an agent is dangerous.
I can understand this, but she offered to show the female agent that it was just nipple rings, and she would have accepted a pat down. There was no reason to make her take them out. Any distraction here was caused by the agents.

Am I the only one who noticed the bit about the male guards snickering at her. Ridiculous.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Cyn, I'm fired up because they didn't give her the option of a pat-down. They simply told her to remove them. They don't tell women wearing underwire bras to remove them.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:15 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I think the real problem here is that she had a bar in one nipple, and a ring in the other. That the fashion police weren't called in makes me sick to my stomach.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:25 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Super simple way to stop this. Put an MRI at the security checkpoints.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:27 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Jazz
Cyn, I'm fired up because they didn't give her the option of a pat-down. They simply told her to remove them. They don't tell women wearing underwire bras to remove them.
Yeah I get that and agree with you. I think this is a bit more cloudy because TSA can cloud my OP question.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:27 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I've done my fair share of traveling, most of it post 9-11. I found myself with free time and extra cash. I side with Cynthetiq on this matter. The TSA may well be jack booted thugs but for the most part from my experience they treat everyone the same. I find it difficult in these times someone would try to board a plane and not expect problems when passing through the metal detectors with large piercings. I haven't been stopped once in at least two years. Shoe off, lap top out, belt off, coat off,watch and change in the bin and no liquids at all.

I watched her this morning with her attorney (who didn't see that coming?) and I wondered what kind of attitude she had when questioned. I went through the TSA at Ft. Lauderdale one time and the lady in front of me refused to take her shoes off. I think her exact quote was "Don't you know who I am? These shoe's are Italian!" I didn't know who she was and couldn't have cared less where her shoes were made. Last I saw of her she was headed behind a white screen and a TSA worker was putting on gloves, didn't look like fun.

I wonder if the TSA is going to be releasing a video showing her throwing a hissy fit in the near future? Wasn't a few months back some lady claimed she was harassed about breast milk and a video basically shot down most if not all of her accusations?

I think she should have removed them at home prior to leaving for the airport.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:30 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by mrklixx
Super simple way to stop this. Put an MRI at the security checkpoints.
that would work, except numerous vets from previous conflicts still have RFBs (shrapnel) in their bodies and this procedure would be a little bit cruel and unusual for them...they didn't put the stuff there...
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Punk.of.Ages
I can understand this, but she offered to show the female agent that it was just nipple rings, and she would have accepted a pat down. There was no reason to make her take them out. Any distraction here was caused by the agents.

Am I the only one who noticed the bit about the male guards snickering at her. Ridiculous.
That's her side of it, has the TSA released anything yet? I'll be surprised if she's being completely honest. It's possible, hell anything possible. But these people know everything they do is being recorded and watched. I think some of the larger airports are also making sound recordings of TSA passenger interactions to head off problems just like this one.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:40 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I watched her this morning with her attorney (who didn't see that coming?) and I wondered what kind of attitude she had when questioned. I went through the TSA at Ft. Lauderdale one time and the lady in front of me refused to take her shoes off. I think her exact quote was "Don't you know who I am? These shoe's are Italian!" I didn't know who she was and couldn't have cared less where her shoes were made. Last I saw of her she was headed behind a white screen and a TSA worker was putting on gloves, didn't look like fun.

I wonder if the TSA is going to be releasing a video showing her throwing a hissy fit in the near future? Wasn't a few months back some lady claimed she was harassed about breast milk and a video basically shot down most if not all of her accusations?
I was thinking the same thing.


Quote:
that would work, except numerous vets from previous conflicts still have RFBs (shrapnel) in their bodies and this procedure would be a little bit cruel and unusual for them...they didn't put the stuff there
Not to mention various implanted medical devices.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:42 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by filtherton
A nipple ring. I think that lady has every right to be pissed off. Shit, I'm pissed off just reading about it. To my knowledge there have been no known instances of body jewelry being used as a means to hijack or down an airplane. What's next? Sun glasses?

The fact that they let her keep her navel piercing in is the clincher. I mean, I could see if they were being consistent in their dumbshittery, because hey, that's the kind of dumbshittery you can predict and rely on. I don't think it is reasonable to expect this woman to take responsibility for not expecting TSA to behave like jerkoffs in a seemingly completely random way.
Agreed.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:43 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Removed them before she left home? are you serious? do you know anything about nipple piercing and how fast they *can* (I wont say will because everyone is different) close up? I hd to take them out for my last surgery, I took them out at 9 am, at 5 pm I couldnt get them back in again.

They were definitely wrong in how they handled it. Mine set off several "wands" and all I had to do was say "My nipples are pierced" have a pat down and I was good to go....same with my underwire bras.

If she threw a fit? so what...I prob would have too. Its not like she refused a pat down or search.

Im curious....anyone ever have to take out ear rings to get on a plane? Any pierced guy have to take the piercing out of his dick to get on a plane? Anyone have to take out a lipring to get on a plane?
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:43 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by uncle phil
that would work, except numerous vets from previous conflicts still have RFBs (shrapnel) in their bodies and this procedure would be a little bit cruel and unusual for them...they didn't put the stuff there...

Yeah, but it would be fun to see 'em dance.

Ah, it's just as well. This chick would probably enjoy having them ripped out of her nipples.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:51 PM   #20 (permalink)
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That's her side of it, has the TSA released anything yet? I'll be surprised if she's being completely honest. It's possible, hell anything possible. But these people know everything they do is being recorded and watched. I think some of the larger airports are also making sound recordings of TSA passenger interactions to head off problems just like this one.
You're right, I did form my opinion on this based on a lot of heresy, but still the whole situation just doesn't seem right. She has the right to feel violated, I think.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:52 PM   #21 (permalink)
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My personal view is that the TSA or airport security should be allowed to strip search you, BUT you get to pick which one of them does the strip search.

I ain't even joking.

And they have to be staffed broadly 50/50 male/female the whole time.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:55 PM   #22 (permalink)
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this is from another printed version of this story, not in the OP
Quote:
Afterward, Hamlin underwent another scan, but realized she had forgotten to remove her navel ring. She offered to remove it, Allred said, but an officer told her it was not necessary because he could see it. Hamlin wondered why a similar visual inspection of her nipple rings would not have sufficed, Allred said.
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/03/28/nipple.ring/index.html

these people need to get on the same fucking page
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:11 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by mrklixx
Yeah, but it would be fun to see 'em dance.
???
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:40 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
Removed them before she left home? are you serious? do you know anything about nipple piercing and how fast they *can* (I wont say will because everyone is different) close up? I hd to take them out for my last surgery, I took them out at 9 am, at 5 pm I couldnt get them back in again.
You're right I don't know anything about nipple rings. Well, I know I like them. But you're telling me if she took them out at home they be impossible to re-insert an hour or two later? She managed to get them out at the airport. Why not take them out in the restroom before going through screening then reinstall?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
They were definitely wrong in how they handled it. Mine set off several "wands" and all I had to do was say "My nipples are pierced" have a pat down and I was good to go....same with my underwire bras.
That's exactly why I think there's a serious chance she told them to fuck off prior to anything else and possibly did refuse any pat down. I've seen many people set off the detector go through the wand search, politely explain the situation and they're on their way. From what I've seen only about 50% end up behind the screen getting the pat down. How come you were able to get through without serious insult or injury and she ended up on CNN and now needs an attorney?

It's completely possible things happen the way she claims, I'll wait for the tape before I decide. Especially after the tape of the lady with the breast milk, show me the tape then I'll decide. If the TSA doesn't release something I'll be more likely to take her word for it. Until then... Tape, tape tape! I want to see the tape.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
If she threw a fit? so what...I prob would have too. Its not like she refused a pat down or search.
TSA are like any other security or law enforcement agencies in that they're trained to focus in on people "throwing a fit." Though I think they're more likely to use the term "behaving highly emotionally or erratically." My guess is, if the TSA was doing it by the "book," this ladies behavior put the entire station on high alert. There's no way for the TSA to know if this ladies behavior isn't "cover" for someone's attempt to circumvent security.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
Im curious....anyone ever have to take out ear rings to get on a plane? Any pierced guy have to take the piercing out of his dick to get on a plane? Anyone have to take out a lipring to get on a plane?
That's a good question. I've flown a lot, did over a quarter million air miles one year. The TSA, in my experience is a pain in the ass. But they're the same pain in the ass for everyone.

I find it odd this ladies experience is so unlike anything I've ever seen.
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:49 PM   #25 (permalink)
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There is more to this story than we know as of yet.

First, it should be noted that according to TSA regulations, body jewelry is indeed acceptable and does not have to be removed, as long as it is physically (pat down) and or visibly determined to be as such. To my knowledge, there is no documentation stating that body jewelry, of any form, is actually considered a threat to the safety of the flight.

Most likely, this is a situation of the TSA agents overstepping their authority in this situation. Further, I believe it may be possible that emotions on both sides of this situation got out of hand and escalated the situation to its dismal end. Whether the woman brought this on herself with her attitude or actions is irrelevant at best. The TSA agents are supposed to conduct safety checks in a professional manner for the sake of the safety of the general public and this situation does not demonstrate a professional atmosphere in a public environment.
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:49 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Tully, imagine you have a prince albert and they ask you to remove it.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:01 PM   #27 (permalink)
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The real point is that Tully does not and would never have a "Prince Albert", and nor would I, and nor would you.

I dont say that this woman deserves to be treated like shit because of making alternative choices... but I buy into this being a personality clash that went a bit too far as described above.

These people do have a lot authority though, and if it is abused then the individuals involved need to be cast aside. The woman should have no right to sue - she has after all the right to walk away and then she can sue for her ticket price. She should have the right to complain to a state body that can apply a heavy fine upon the airstation or responsible body.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:24 PM   #28 (permalink)
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to answer Tully.....another part of the cnn story

Quote:
Hamlin said she had to visit the person who originally pierced her nipples to get the rings reinserted, and said the process was excruciatingly painful because of the scar tissue that had formed.
they close fast, its not like getting your ears pierced, there is no cartilage in your nipples.

Why didnt she go to the bathroom beforehand? probably because she's never run into the situation before......she clearly says in the cnn story its never happened with her nips or her belly button
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:25 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willravel
Tully, imagine you have a prince albert and they ask you to remove it.
OK, Googled PA.

If I couldn't take it out I guess I go through the standing detector and if called to the side for a wand search I'd be polite and responsive. I'd explain the situation. If requested I'd have no problem with a pat down. If they insisted I remove it and I couldn't, I'd be prepared with a copy of their SOP from their web site and at that point I'd start writing down names, calmly and quietly as I requested a supervisor.

See if I had a piercing or a joint replacement that I knew I couldn't remove I'd show up at the airport prepared. That mind set my come from military service and working for the government. But I wouldn't show up without their SOP in hand any more then I'd show up without my ID or plane ticket. What I wouldn't do is start making a scene. That never works to your favor, IMO.

Everyone I've ever seen have an issue with the TSA are people who made a scene, were rude or made off color remarks. One of the stories I read on this stated the woman claimed the standing detector did not "go off" but that she was pulled aside for a wand search. Anybody ever see that happen? I never have. I'm sure it's possible but I've never seen it. I've seen them pull people out of line randomly prior to the standing detector, never after.

Tape, I want to see the tape. Until then I highly suspect she's not telling the whole truth. If she is- she was treated unfairly and someone, more likely some people, need to be disciplined. If she's being completely honest and people at TSA loose their jobs over this I'll have no problem with that.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:25 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strange Famous
If she volunteered or did not refuse to be strip searched (by a female guard of course) instead of removing the nipple ring, then the airport security acted improperly and should be heavily fined.
Seconded.

The point here is not that thwoman was not taking responsibility for her jewelery, it's that the rules were not applied universally or consistently (she had to remove her nipple jewellery, but not her navel jewellery) and it's further that the TSA's own rules were not followed - she claims not to have been offered a pat down search, and claims that if she had, she'd have accepted.

From the article in the OP it seems like an odd rule that is itself a bit of an overkill was applied in an odd fashion in a way that caused her humiliation and pain when the rules in place should at most have caused her to have to explain her piercing choice and show she was not armed.

In the litigious culture that appears to exist on the US side of the pond, I'd expect this woman to take the TSA to the fucking cleaners.

I'm not saying I approve, but she's got a big name civil rights lawyer on her side and the TSA's gonna get raped.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:34 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Strange Famous
The real point is that Tully does not and would never have a "Prince Albert", and nor would I, and nor would you.
You don't know that. Now that I know what it is I'm thinking about it. But I want one I can take out when I fly.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:34 PM   #32 (permalink)
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ok being pulled after you go thru and it didnt go off is very common in Atlanta, happens all the time, and yes its happened to me (and Dave)
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:44 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
Why didnt she go to the bathroom beforehand? probably because she's never run into the situation before......she clearly says in the cnn story its never happened with her nips or her belly button
That makes sense, if you've been there, done that and bought the t-shirt in the past-why would you expect this time to be any different? So I can see why she didn't remove them in the restroom prior to passing through screening.

That aside, to me there's several parts of the story that don't add up.

But I find it hard to believe, according to her story, that a total of six TSA agents (four male and two female) were all involved in this knowing they're on video. In my experience groups of people who know they're on video don't do stupid things like this, but who knows?

Again, if she's telling the truth, she was not treated fairly. Then the TSA and the agents involved deserve what ever lumps they take.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:46 PM   #34 (permalink)
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I have some fairly serious metal in both my nipples (5mm width bars) and my penis(1x8mm width bars) and scrotum(3x5mm bars).

I've been through many, many metal detectors in Europe and they're mostly set to a reasonable level whereby they aren't triggered by my piercings.

However, I've had two little experiences outside of the wave-through...

1) Provincial Polish airport, bored guard. He basically decided to practise his English and piss me off at the same time. Went through all of my belongings, asked what several devices were:

Laptop (not kidding)
MP3 player (not kidding)
Multi-card flash reader
PSP
etc.

He then proceeded to demand that i boot up the laptop, became almost outraged when a screen came up to choose which of the OS' to boot into and then thought he'd be able to get me to give him my password. When I told him there was no way I was giving him the password to one or any of the OS' and that this had gone far enough, he winked and told me to carry on.

My piercings didn't set anything off there...

2) Going through a provincial Spanish airport (Zaragoza), all of the electronic goods separated and screened, boots off, belt off, etc. Piercings set off the buzzer.

Pulled aside, the guard used the hand scanner on me, which obviously went off over my nipples. He raised his eyebrows, I raised my jumper (yes, in northern spain it gets pretty chilly for December/January) and saw his surprise and then amusement. He carried on with his handscan, which went off over my penis.

Everyone was looking now. The guard looked at me, I looked at him with a "well what did you really expect, given these up here?" + smile kinda look.

At first he didn't know what to do, so I tightened my jeans around the piercing, which clearly showed up what it is.... at which point he just laughed, smiled and waved me through, shaking his head.

Much laughter all round, but given a tight-arse in his place, it could have been a strip search or worse. :s

Oh!

3) A manual hand sweep scan thing beeped over my penis in Finland one time... I took out the bar (not my penis) right there in the queue, showed it to the guy who said "ok, ok... go on..." waving me away.

still... this kind of petty authority - which saves no-one from ceramic knives, for example - is worrying to say the least.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:46 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
ok being pulled after you go thru and it didnt go off is very common in Atlanta, happens all the time, and yes its happened to me (and Dave)
Really? I find that interesting.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:49 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tully Mars
That aside, to me there's several parts of the story that don't add up.
Right there. We're missing information here, and unless or until that missing information becomes available it's impossible to say whether the TSA agents acted properly. Let's not forget that we've only heard one side of the story and that this woman has a lot to gain from a successful lawsuit.

Also, this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by LA Times
...the TSA's customer service manager at the Lubbock airport concluded the screening was handled properly, Allred said.
What might the customer service manager know that we don't?
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:57 PM   #37 (permalink)
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lets see...I've been pulled aside, after not making the walk thru thingy go off in:

Atlanta, several times
Ft. Lauderdale once
Newark twice
Baltimore once
Detroit once

(these flights were all post 911)

Dave has been pulled aside:
Atlanta
Germany (Frankfurt)
Israel
Singapore
Seoul

to turn it around, I've never seen anyone pulled BEFORE going thru the walk thru
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Old 03-28-2008, 03:16 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShaniFaye
lets see...I've been pulled aside, after not making the walk thru thingy go off in:

Atlanta, several times
Ft. Lauderdale once
Newark twice
Baltimore once
Detroit once

(these flights were all post 911)

Dave has been pulled aside:
Atlanta
Germany (Frankfurt)
Israel
Singapore
Seoul

to turn it around, I've never seen anyone pulled BEFORE going thru the walk thru

You've been pulled aside a lot. I haven't been pulled aside in over a year.

I'll admit we may be having completely different experiences. Are you always flying coach? I haven't flown coach in about four or five years, you fly 1/4 million miles a year and they bump you to first class. Sadly they may not be treating first class the same. They should be, everyone should be treated the same when it comes to security.

Again I've only seen people pulled before going through the standing detector. And I've only been pulled aside before.
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Old 03-28-2008, 03:27 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Ive been pulled over to be searched once, but I felt like the dude was just doing his job to be honest. It only took 5 minutes.
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Old 03-28-2008, 03:34 PM   #40 (permalink)
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I buy coach and get bumped because Dave flys just as much as you do if not more, and when we fly together we both get bumped. Dont quite see how that matters though, as I show my boarding pass to get into the security line and I've never been asked for it when going thru the detector, so they have no idea where Im sitting on the plane

I'd just like to say, just because it hasnt happened to "you" doesnt mean it doesnt happen.

I'd also like to clarify that Im not bitching about being pulled aside, as SF said, it takes minutes for it to be done and so what?
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