(Paul Jacob/Common Sense) – John Tyner, a 31-year-old man hailing from Oceanside, California, not only declined San Diego International Airport’s kind offer of a full-body scan via privacy-invading machine, he also declined a full-body groping via privacy-invading human.
Unfortunately for TSA (who would like to make it unfortunate for Tyner as well) he happened to record his interactions with security personnel on a cell phone. Now TSA honchos are growling that they may well follow through with a threat to fine him $10,000 for not submitting to either procedure — inasmuch as it’s now a crime to care about one’s personal dignity.
The penalty has gone up, though, since TSA threatened Tyner at the airport. It’s now $11,000.
Five or ten dollars for refusing an obnoxious groping, I understand. Or a nickel. Better? A penny. But thousands of dollars?
I’m sure other aspiring passengers who initially cooperated with such intrusions also decided mid-procedure that things were getting too invasive for comfort and that retreat was the better part of valor. I doubt that TSA has sought to extract $10,000+ from each recalcitrant.
But it seems Tyner’s conduct is especially heinous. First, he balked at unreasonable search of his person; second, he blatantly exercised his First Amendment rights by shockingly sharing evidence and testimony about what happened.
If the TSA doesn’t do something, fast, more and more people might act as if their constitutional rights still apply.