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I didn't want to hijack the other thread b/c that woman's experience was horrendous. I can't imagine having to deal with that and I probably wouldn't have been very quick thinking on my feet with being so tired and off such a long flight.

I do have a story of my own and a strategy for how I handle those things though and I think that it's good to think about situations before they happen so we can anticipate how to react.

We fly every month - sometimes twice a month - that means at least 2 flights, sometimes more.

We're old pros at the metal detector thing and I always take the same bag with the same stuff in it to minimize my chances of getting extra searches.

Anyway, twice now, I have accidentally bumped into the metal detector as I went through it - I think once I bumped into it and once DS touched it. Anyway, if that happens, it goes off and they have to search you.

Ok, so the first time I dutifully get my stuff and go over so they can paw through my bag and wand me. Fine - no big deal. But then, they want to not just wand DS, but frisk him too. I said, no way. They said, well, if we don't do that, you're not flying. I was very polite but firm and insisted that they were not touching my DS, period. They said I couldn't fly - I asked to speak with the supervisor. He came over and again, I was polite, but firm that no one was putting their hands on my kid. A bunch of back and forth crap and my DH finally stepped in and said, "Look, I got through just fine - I'll take all my stuff off again and go through with DS. Will that satisfy you?"

They agreed to that, so DH took off his shoes, his belt, his watch, all that stuff and then he went through a second time alone, fine, all green. Then he picked up DS and took him through too, holding him tightly so that none of his limbs would touch and it was all fine.

If there is someone you're flying with - there is NO REASON for them to touch your children.

The second time we had the same scenario and it, again, took a supervisor to approve, but we were able to do the same thing.

I don't know how we'd handle this situation under the current higher standards, but we're due to find out as we're flying next week.

Has anyone else used another strategy that kept security from frisking your children? I'd be interested to hear how others have handled it.
 

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Wow, thanks for posting this. I may have to fly w/dd in October, without dh, so it will just be me & her. I'll know to make sure her little arms & legs are all tucked in before we walk through!
 

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I cannot believe that they are frisking babies! When will the insanity end? anniej, kudos to you for keeping your head in that situation. I'm not sure I would have been as cool as you were. I'm with you though, no one, for any reason, is frisking my DD. NO WAY.

And thanks for your support.
 

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Sadly, this probably comes from the cases where people use babies to transport drugs into the country - often stashing them in the baby's diapers or formula cans. Sad to say, I would not put it past some people to use their babies (or someone else's baby - there was a case in Chicago where a mom was paid a good sum of money to let another woman use her baby as a way to smuggle drugs into the country - very very sad) as a way to smuggle something on a plane.

I would guess though if your child is going to fly on the plane and pass through security then they also have the right to search them if they have just cause (metal detector going off).
 

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Frisking babies and toddlers goes way to far. IMO the whole airport screening tactics boderline on unconstitutional, since they basically have free reign to say and do whatever they want. Remember the whole controversy about frisking women's breast area? Who is monitoring these folks? Seriously I think that there is a better way to do things. Maybe I don't have all the answers, but they certainly don't either. But whatever we do, we have remember that although something horribly tragic and terrible happened in the sky, that doesn't negate the fact that the rest of us still have our rights and freedmons.
 

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bout to get hammered im sure..... but i wouldnt mind them frisking my dd. if she were on my lap and in front of me. I wouldnt let them take her out of my arms. But I know that there are people out there that use their kids for awful things. Look at the children with bombs tied to them during the vietnam war.

I dont understand why anyone would believe that if the alarm went off, why they wouldnt want to search your child. If the mama remained calm and the tsa agent was calm I doubt the child would ever even know anything was going on.

Im sure if the momma started getting angry then the child would no doubt be alarmed.

this is the times we live in. its sad. but flying is not a right. its a privelege. If my husband was a pilot and was flying all those daily flights, I would want to know that EVERY precaution was being taken. Even if it stopped one plane from going down, that is 300 families that are saved.
thats enough for me.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by inchijen
bout to get hammered im sure..... but i wouldnt mind them frisking my dd. if she were on my lap and in front of me. I wouldnt let them take her out of my arms. But I know that there are people out there that use their kids for awful things. Look at the children with bombs tied to them during the vietnam war.

I dont understand why anyone would believe that if the alarm went off, why they wouldnt want to search your child. If the mama remained calm and the tsa agent was calm I doubt the child would ever even know anything was going on.

Im sure if the momma started getting angry then the child would no doubt be alarmed.

this is the times we live in. its sad. but flying is not a right. its a privelege. If my husband was a pilot and was flying all those daily flights, I would want to know that EVERY precaution was being taken. Even if it stopped one plane from going down, that is 300 families that are saved.
thats enough for me.

I agree 100%. I want to be safe when I fly and I appreciate the extra attention paid at security. I too was one chosen to be wanded while I was 6 months pregnant - I absolutely looked ridiculous standing there with my santa hat in hand but it was absolutely obvious that it was a random check. If they aren't allowed to search children can people complain about them searching the elderly? How about a person with a disability? To be completely fair I think that the TSA agents have to treat ALL persons passing through security the same, children and adults included.
 

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I am not against them checking my dd however I think the policy that you (parent) can't be touching the child while they search them is insane. (honestly not sure if this applies to every airport because I only had the issue once and now dd is ok without me holding her) It is easier when I travel with DH because usually we are all searched and we can keep DD with one parent at all times. DD has been searched MANY times but the searches seem less invasive now that she is out of diapers etc.

I also don't like the policy that the airports occasionally have that the parent can't take the child through security devices. Apparently it is "safer" for the child to go through alone or in the arms of airport security personnel...um WTF? I am going to hand my infant over to be walked through the metal detector? Apparently, this is seen by some as a reasonable option.

The biggest problem I have is that dd has to fly with her stuffed "friends" and one of them apparently looks suspicous under the scanner and has to be pulled out to be examined EVERY TIME we fly out of MSP but not other airports..
:

Ok I thought of another issue: Security officials are often obviously not trained on how to search children and will occasionally say some odd things. For e.g. One security person told dd that she was just "going to tickle her" Nice way to freak my kid out, having her think some stranger is going to tickle her. I hate that there is no way to complain without feeling like I could potentially get some felony charge.
 

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what infuriates me is the way they single out women and children. female terrorist activity is rare, never involving children, and never even from an extremist islamic group. as psycho and irrational as the US is they dont even worry about females from those groups as it just doesnt occur.

for the record, reading the TSA website, they're not allowed to make you or your child test breastmilk/formula/food right now. and also states they will never put you in a situation when you have to let go of your child.

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...n/formula.shtm

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...n/index.shtm#2
 

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This really bothered me. Firstly, no one is touching my kids. Period. Flying is a privedge we pay for... dearly. I've no problem with searches through my luggage, metal detectors, or limited hand luggage, but no sorry no one is touching my kid. I will take them through the metal detector in their diaper, if required.

To the person who said they use babies to smuggle drugs. I'd like to see reports of this. I'll I've ever heard is hearsay and innuendo. Same with the whole bomb in the baby's diaper. I really think this a myth and if not it's extremely, extremely rare/unlikely. I think it's a myth b/c it makes them monsters and we can't empathise with monsters. It's so much more cut and dry to hate when you remove empathy.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by arlecchina
what infuriates me is the way they single out women and children. female terrorist activity is rare, never involving children, and never even from an extremist islamic group. as psycho and irrational as the US is they dont even worry about females from those groups as it just doesnt occur.

for the record, reading the TSA website, they're not allowed to make you or your child test breastmilk/formula/food right now. and also states they will never put you in a situation when you have to let go of your child.

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...n/formula.shtm

http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtrav...n/index.shtm#2
The TSA regs issued the day after the threat level was first raised made it clear that you and/or your child did not have to taste ebm or formula. However, on the first day without any specific reg's TSA officials had the discretion to ask you to do this.

Also, the TSA reg's do not state that you won't have to "let go" of your child..only that they won't be "seperated" from you, which mama's here may equate but the TSA does NOT (to them seperated means taken somewhere you can't easily see them.

Remember TSA officials are given discretion on certain things. You can politey ask for things to be done a certain way but the bottom line is that they ALWAYS have discretion to refuse you boarding.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by etoilech
This really bothered me. Firstly, no one is touching my kids. Period. Flying is a privedge we pay for... dearly. I've no problem with searches through my luggage, metal detectors, or limited hand luggage, but no sorry no one is touching my kid. I will take them through the metal detector in their diaper, if required.

To the person who said they use babies to smuggle drugs. I'd like to see reports of this. I'll I've ever heard is hearsay and innuendo. Same with the whole bomb in the baby's diaper. I really think this a myth and if not it's extremely, extremely rare/unlikely. I think it's a myth b/c it makes them monsters and we can't empathise with monsters. It's so much more cut and dry to hate when you remove empathy.
http://www.customs.gov/xp/CustomsTod...ging_faces.xml
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by etoilech
This really bothered me. Firstly, no one is touching my kids. Period. Flying is a privedge we pay for... dearly. I've no problem with searches through my luggage, metal detectors, or limited hand luggage, but no sorry no one is touching my kid. I will take them through the metal detector in their diaper, if required.

from the tsa link

"The Walk-Through Metal Detector

If your child can walk without your assistance, we recommend that you and your child walk through the metal detector separately. If you are carrying your child through the metal detector and the alarm sounds, our Security Officer will have to additionally screen both you and your child.

Remove babies and children from their strollers or infant carriers so that our Security Officers can screen them individually.
You may not pass the child to another person behind you or in front of you during this process.
Do not pass your child to our Security Officer to hold.
Our Security Officer may ask for your help screening your child."

I suppose if you wont let anyone touch your child, you should take the greyhound. because when you buy your ticket and enter the airport you are agreeing to the terms and conditions of the tsa.
 

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Using babies to pass drugs is a practice that definitley happens! Its not just hearsay. And theoretically, a terorrist could put something in a baby's diaper. It sounds ridiculous, but who would've thought drug carriers would put drugs in a baby's diaper?
 

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Which is brilliant, because I don't actually live in the USA, hence the TSA would have zero jurisdiction over me or my kids. We don't have Greyhound. We do have trains, however.


I've been through this before, though in the USA too. I usually request to be put through alone... then go back around and take the baby through too. I've never been refused. I find that they are generally more accomodating than they're given credit for.

I can't believe the whole kids/drugs thing. That is NUTS. I stand corrected.

My beef with these things is they can do all the security screens they want, but to be blunt... I still feel like it's never going to be enough. It's goingto harass the maximum number of people for a mimimum effect. Not saying it shouldn't be done, but it really feels like a lose/lose situation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Well, it's my personal opinon and modus operandi, but NO ONE is touching my kid. Certainly not someone from TSA. I don't care - I won't fly that day - that's how strongly I feel about it.

I have serious issues when people say, "these are just the times we live in." But, that's not for this discussion.

I was just sharing something we have dealt with and thought other people would maybe have some other ways they have dealt with the same issue.
 

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Harassing EVERYONE in the universe is not making us safer, and in fact, it's pretty much letting the terrorists *win*, IMO. Once they are having such a negative impact on our daily lives, they have power over us, don't they?

The real problem is that the TSA instead of spending billions of dollars harassing normal citizens, needs to spend that money to step up their technology, baggage screening, etc. How about more of the booths you walk through to detect ammunition residue? We saw one in Vegas, but it was broken. Taking away my water and forcing me to endure endless amounts of time with no fluids isn't making you, me, or my unborn baby safer. It's just making us frustrated. It's a placebo. I'd be a lot happier with more Air Marshalls on board planes, more sensitive metal detectors, etc. I mean if there IS a bomb in a diaper WHY do the things we walk through not notice it?!?!?

Better technology!

Olivia, I believe that where you live your TSA-type people can be reasoned with. In the US, I personally don't believe they can. These people are low-wage paid employees and the ONLY thing they can do is exactly what they are told... there is really not a lot of critical thinking happening there. Not to mention the fun effects of giving small people a little bit of power over lots of people and the crazy, crazy results you get!
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by prettypixels

Olivia, I believe that where you live your TSA-type people can be reasoned with. In the US, I personally don't believe they can. These people are low-wage paid employees and the ONLY thing they can do is exactly what they are told... there is really not a lot of critical thinking happening there. Not to mention the fun effects of giving small people a little bit of power over lots of people and the crazy, crazy results you get!
wow, thats harsh!!! giving "small people" power? I fly about twice a month and have since my dd was two weeks, 90% of the time I am alone. I have had the most thoughtful and helpful people from tsa that come out and help me get all the luggage and bags on the xray machine. They have always helped with my laptop and cameras. im sure it isnt always the case. but its been my experience. i fly mostly from san diego to tucson and back. detroit quite a few times. everyone was great. I was personally picked for random search maybe three or four times. it was quick. I was alone, and never once had to put dd down or let anyone touch her. Except for when they were gooing and gaaing over her.
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the reason I say these are the times we live is because americans in this day are fairly new to living through terror attacks. We have inalienable rights, but carrying a bottle of water or mouthwash onto a plane is not one of them. Remember even freedom of speech is taken away once you board an aircraft due to threats of "inciting a riot" (i.e. jokes or comments in any way concerning the b word).
 

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Quote:
what infuriates me is the way they single out women and children. female terrorist activity is rare, never involving children, and never even from an extremist islamic group. as psycho and irrational as the US is they dont even worry about females from those groups as it just doesnt occur.
Unfortunately, the facts in the recent plot don't bear out your theory. They are Islamic extremists. Two of the plotters arrested were women--one of whom was pregnant. In fact, saying that extremist Islamic groups "never" use women flies in the face of fairly recent incidents involving female suicide bombers in both Iraq and Israel.

Regardles...

I have been pulled aside for extra screening every single time I have flown. It only takes 2 flags to make you get pulled aside, and I have always had them. I've only ever flown one way, and my first name is Sabra. (Any "middle eastern" name gets a flag, even though I'm an Episcopalian from Texas.)

In LAX, when moving here to Hawaii at the beginning of '05, the entire family was pulled aside for extra screening. Including my active-duty US Navy husband, and my 12-month-old daughter. We actually found it laughable, especially when they looked down the back of her diaper. It was a reasonably noninvasive search, though, to the extent that we kind of questioned its effectiveness.

And in all of my screening, I have never been told not to hold on to my child.
 
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