Monday, June 13, 2011

The Jack-Booted Thug(s) of the Week...

... are the Customs and Border Protection agents who on May 26 made a shipful of 2,000 elderly British tourists on a 72-day dream cruise wait in line for seven hours with no food, water or lavatory access, all to simply be cleared for entry into the Port of Los Angeles for a one-day visit.

According to the passengers, most of the reason for this completely unacceptable wait was the addition of a bunch of wildly overreaching security checks, in apparent direct retaliation for some of the cruisers daring to complain about the already-long wait since they had already been given advance clearance to enter the U.S. and their itinerary had already taken them to nine other American ports:

"The fingerprints of both hands were taken as well as retina scans and a detailed check of the passport as well as questioning as to their background."

Because, you know, elderly wealthy Brits champing at the bit to relax and spend their money in our country are a well-known source of terrorist zealots.

Here's the part that earns these CBP goons this week's coveted award:

"When one lady asked in desperation whether she could use a bathroom, one immigration official is said to have replied: 'Do it over the side, we won’t mind.'"

Way to represent our nation and welcome guests to our country, Zippy.

Even the cruise line itself admits that the incident happened pretty much the way their passengers said it did, although the company was a bit more PC about it:

"[A company spokeswoman] added: 'The delay in immigration procedures was largely to blame on issues with the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) computer systems, not aided by the verbal approach that a minority of our passengers, clearly frustrated by this delay, took with the local immigration officers.'

'The US has a record for the most stringent and thorough security and entry requirements in the world, and they felt the need to enhance their security checks further, which they have the power to do.'"

Then those particular agents need to have that power permanently taken away from them.

1 comment:

Bike Bubba said...

But they could have snuck some Marmite into the country, and what would you be saying THEN? :^)

It's worth noting that if you cruised a ship full of young, Islamist males into Tel Aviv, the Israeli security screeners would have done it quicker than the TSA did these oldsters.