SO MAD about Border Crossing! (long rant)

This is a discussion on SO MAD about Border Crossing! (long rant) within the Law Enforcement, Military & Homeland Security Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I hope this is the right forum...if not, sorry about that, Mods. Ok. So we went to Canada for a long weekend so that we ...

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Thread: SO MAD about Border Crossing! (long rant)

  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    SO MAD about Border Crossing! (long rant)

    I hope this is the right forum...if not, sorry about that, Mods.


    Ok. So we went to Canada for a long weekend so that we could attend what I call a "nerd herd." Anyhow, I KNOW they are not very firearm-friendly so I wasn't going to be an idiot and try and bring my Sig into the country...or even a bullet or anything. But, I brought my NRA instructor handbook, a notebook, some pens, and a sweet "gun pron" magazine that one of the guys gave me in class last week. My CCHP is in my wallet, but we only use the Passports for ID.

    Heading INTO Canada was very smooth. I normally wear a baseball cap when we travel because it's hassle-free to keep my hair up and sometimes you get glare in the airplane, so I like having the brim.

    We get to Toronto, everything is fine, still in my NRA cap. We check into the hotel, blah blah. The 2nd-in-command of the show (where we are guests) CONFISCATED my NRA hat at the Convention Centre!

    Mmmkay...whatever, I guess. And no, he kept it, I don't have it back.

    Coming back INTO the US from Canada, it got a lot worse! We're in line to go through the metal detector, take off our shoes, have our carry-ons scanned, etc, and before I even queued up, the lady Border Guard says "I'm going to need you to step over here, you're going to be my random female check."

    Okie dokie, no problem. I'm a guest in their country trying to make the flight back home to mine. I politely answered all of her questions, "yes ma'am" or "no ma'am"-ed her, and complied immediately with everything she asked. So she starts saying "I'm going to need you to step here, facing me." Then she starts patting me down.

    I thought all would be well until the male BG comes over. He starts in with the wand. They make me put my belt on, take my belt off, put my belt on again, take it off again...I'm holding my passport with my arms outstretched the whole time, and the darn passport is making the wand go nuts. Nothing else.

    So then she decides that it's time to frisk me. FOR THIRTY STRAIGHT MINUTES. In full view of the public! She lifted up my shirt, and I swear -- I'm not trying to be humorous about this-- she gave me an atomic wedgie. Since when are they allowed to pull your underwear up over your waistband???? Or lift your shirt in front of everyone? NOT COOL, CANADA.

    Finally she decided I'm not the Taliban, and gets my carry-on bag. Oops, my gun literature (oh no, I'm a scary American gun-nut! Help!) is still in my bag, along with the cash we needed to exchange. This did NOT go well.

    So now I'm bent over the steel table, frisked AGAIN, as all my personal items are spread out for everyone to walk by and gawk at, including my Rx meds. Not like I'm on anti-psychotics or VD meds, but it's still embarrassing and not everyone needs to know that I have High Blood Pressure, you know?

    I did NOT appreciate this at all. I understand that they will randomly choose folks to search, and that's fine. Let's all keep our borders safe. But this was really over the top, and I hate to say it, but I really felt violated. If our flight wasn't delayed 3 hours, we would have missed it.

    But then, I got to spend 6 hours in Newark last night. Joy. Welcome to my nightmare.
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


    Sig Sauer P239 DAK (9mm)
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  3. #2
    Member Array J Bowen's Avatar
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    Sorry. sounded terrible. I thought my border experience was a little
    stressful but nowhere near as bad as yours was.

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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    That sounds excessive. I think you can ask for a supervisor if you fell you are being mistreated.

    I know, I get the treatment every time I fly.
    Don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see!
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    Member Array rmccoll's Avatar
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    This was on returning to the US... so all were US BP agents!

    This is what happens with power and no accountability!

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    Was this TSA or U.S. Customs? Usually, TSA performs metal detection and searches for outgoing flights. They keep the sky's safe. Customs typically checks your baggage and your official papers (passport) to make sure you belong in the U.S. Whoever it was, it sounds to me like they were training the new female and you were the guinea pig. I'd be pissed about losing my NRA hat the most.
    "Government is not the solution to our problem; government IS the problem". - Ronald Reagan 1981

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    Member Array V65magnafan's Avatar
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    Confiscated your NRA hat?

    That's theft.

    If s/he took it from your head, that's assault.

    If s/he asked for your hat and you gave it voluntarily, all complaints are cancelled.
    NRA 2AF IDPA
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    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    This was at the airport in Toronto after the main ticket counter but BEFORE you enter US Customs to get back into the states. It was just the security where they scan you carry-ons. So I believe this was Canadian security people.

    They took my hat at the convention centre, not the airport. *sigh* Really not looking forward to next year's trip now. Maybe I should dress up like a hippie, wear peace symbols, not bathe or shave for a few weeks before I go, huh?
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


    Sig Sauer P239 DAK (9mm)
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    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by V65magnafan View Post
    Confiscated your NRA hat?

    That's theft.

    If s/he took it from your head, that's assault.

    If s/he asked for your hat and you gave it voluntarily, all complaints are cancelled.
    Um, asked me to hand it over so I did. Guess that's my bad then. Off to buy a new one today. :(
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


    Sig Sauer P239 DAK (9mm)
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    Member Array V65magnafan's Avatar
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    Got it.

    This might soothe the hurt a bit. Canada is now the world's biggest producer of illegal synthetic/designer drugs. They're easy to transport across borders. So, there may be a special push to seize these pills. Maybe the Canadian folks were told to be extra vigilant. My daughter and her friend just left for Korea and had no trouble at all.

    I don't know. I'm guessing, but you might have fit a certain profile or description. Or, you might have appeared a bit nervous to them. They are sixth-sense experts at sensing this stuff.

    It's getting to be such a hassle that border crossing between the two countries is way down. Sad. Canadians and Americans are bearing the brunt of the fighting in Afganistan, and our border is becoming a bit nasty.

    I'm hopeful that your next crossing will be more pleasant. I'm not writing this stuff to make you feel bad, Bunny. Actually I'm trying to frame my comments as useful for anyone who has to cross the border.

    Canada has had some really stupid Liberal governments, and two social-engineer senators who rammed through a huge anti-gun bill some years ago while gun owners were asleep at the switch. But it's still the best neighbour the U.S. could ask for.

    I still have room for US Constitutionalist refugees who cross the border to get away from Obamaland WTSHTF.
    NRA 2AF IDPA
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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    So, who at the gathering stole your hat? If you were guests of the show, it seems you could reacquire one easily, and rat out the schmuck who committed theft of your property.

    A 30min "atomic wedgie" sounds a bit excessive. I mean, you were obviously a Taliban ninnie from the USA, needing the inspection, right? The thing about crossings that gets me: the inspection station might be pretty clear of offensive items, but the border is hardly "safe." Ironic, given how far they stick it to you, as if "full wedgies" make the border even better.
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    Toronto airport is unusual because US Customs and Immigration do screening up there. I don't know if TSA does as well.

    While it is possible that your "gun" related stuff caused the scrutiny, I think it is more probable that you were just one of the random victims. I have found myself wanded, patted down, scrutinized, examined, frustrated, angered, delayed, just changing from one airline to another here in the states. I think sometimes those wands are either broken or are just "an excuse" for doing the more thorough exams on a random basis. And for all of that, they completely missed a urine collection bag on my thigh (old man with sometimes broken plumbing), which could easily have had a considerably more dangerous liquid inside. TSA needs some serious managerial reform.

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    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    V65 -- not at all, you're being very informative :) I've been told I look Arabic (mostly by Middle Easterners) so maybe that was it? Anything's possible. We fly out of the country so often, I don't think I was nervous. But like you said, who knows? I just feel like it was excessive. And honestly, who smuggles blood pressure meds? They're $12 if you have no insurance, and $2 at Wal-Mart if you do!

    ccw9mm: One of the show staff took it. I couldn't get another one at the show, it was mostly gaming and stuff. Got a cool pic with Master Sgt from HALO though, but I need to buy another NRA hat today.

    Yes. Clearly we can defeat the Taliban, one wedgie at a time. Remember folks, if your unmentionables are seated comfortably, the terrorists win. (That should be my new quote!)
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


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    Distinguished Member Array Bunny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hopyard View Post
    Toronto airport is unusual because US Customs and Immigration do screening up there. I don't know if TSA does as well.

    While it is possible that your "gun" related stuff caused the scrutiny, I think it is more probable that you were just one of the random victims. I have found myself wanded, patted down, scrutinized, examined, frustrated, angered, delayed, just changing from one airline to another here in the states. I think sometimes those wands are either broken or are just "an excuse" for doing the more thorough exams on a random basis. And for all of that, they completely missed a urine collection bag on my thigh (old man with sometimes broken plumbing), which could easily have had a considerably more dangerous liquid inside. TSA needs some serious managerial reform.
    Hopy: agreed. But they started in on all this before ever even looking at my bags, so it wasn't the crazy-gun-nut vibe setting them off. I'd already had my hat taken before we even left for the airport. You're probably 100% right-on with the "random victim" theory. Like international travel and delayed flights and cramped seating at the back of the airplane near the toilet so you can smell everyone's "leavings" for 3 hours isn't bad enough?
    Don't frisk me, I am the weapon.


    Sig Sauer P239 DAK (9mm)
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    www.vanguardnc.com

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    Member Array V65magnafan's Avatar
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    The thing about crossings that gets me: the inspection station might be pretty clear of offensive items, but the border is hardly "safe." Ironic, given how far they stick it to you, as if "full wedgies" make the border even better.
    So true. They go through a show of inspecting the generally law-abiding, but 200 miles to the east, around Cornwall the smuggling is unbelievable.

    The native reserve straddles the border. Drugs, cigarettes, guns, illegal aliens pass back and forth unimpeded.

    Canadian border crossing guards refuse to man the bridge, it's so dangerous.

    American border guards need help, but most of the crew is down south keeping out Mexicans.

    Fully-equipped cigarette factories (!) turn out tons of illegal cigarettes.

    Guns cross into Canada. Drugs go out.

    The Mounties are too hand-tied to attack. An Canadian army invasion nearby some years ago ended in stalemate.

    No one wants to get rid of the problem and be accused of genocide at the Commie UN.
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    Distinguished Member Array Agave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmccoll View Post
    This was on returning to the US... so all were US BP agents!

    This is what happens with power and no accountability!
    Patrol Agents generally don't man Ports-of-Entry. If you see them at airports, it will for immigration purposes, not security or customs purposes.

    I'm pretty sure whoever did this is Canadian.
    The preceding post may contain sarcasm; it's just better that way. However, it is still intended with construction and with the Love of my L-rd Y'shua.

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