My own cousin shared a story with me about her trying experience at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport last week. After a male TSA agent described the pat-down to her as “touching your breasts and vagina and putting her hands inside your shirt and pants,” she calmly objected and asked to speak to a manager. The TSA’s response? According to my cousin, they handcuffed her for being uncooperative and detained her in a room for nearly an hour. She missed her flight and was told that if she “made a scene at security” again, she would be banned from the airport.
This story comports with the thousands of stories that have been reported in the past few years. And, of course, those are only the stories we find out about. Given that TSA agents “screen” 1.8 to 2 million passengers a day, we’ll never know the full extent of harassment and abuse they perpetrate.