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Airport fascists collar three jokers in just a week.

By johnboy - 25 April 2005 28

ABC Online has an interesting story on the numbers of people being charged for making jokes at the airport.

the Queenslander became the third person in a week facing court on a charge that could attract a fine of up to $5,000.

While joking around with security types isn’t the smartest move in the world, I do wonder what benefit we’re getting as a society for charging these people who are doing no harm?

A few weeks ago travelling to Sydney on business (so I was wearing a suit) I got pulled aside for residue scanning. The guard was being reasonably pleasant and then as he scanned my lapels he semi-joked “this is just looking for any residues if you were making bombs”

I started to semi joke back “Assuming of course I was making bombs in my suit”

I got as far as “making” when I realised from his body language I was about to get in a world of trouble.

It seems to me that it’s pretty easy to get in trouble under this regime.

What’s Your opinion?


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28 Responses to
Airport fascists collar three jokers in just a week.
LurkerGal 4:53 pm 26 Apr 05

Agreed. Given the nervousness of the Security Guards at airports these days, why not just shut up rather than aggravating them???? In other words, be a bloody grown up.

vg 4:28 pm 26 Apr 05

Ummm, not sure if that was actually in English but the operating factor here is the enormous inconvenience and delay caused to non smart- arses by the smart arses.

A couple of well placed fines may cause a smart arse to shut their mouth and answer as a normal person would. Its quite simple really, answer the appropriate question with a ‘no’ and you are on your way.

As for signs adverting that such comments are ill advised? I’d suggest 99.9% of mature adults would realise that without them

Anonymous 3:24 pm 26 Apr 05

for all you wet blankets that think responsible behaviour must now be enforced by law, fines, and what..mandatory sentencing? do try to remember that the operant fact here is the having or not having bombs and their bits. Also the detection of such by security, which as you do recognise, is their role. Not sure what import the comments of the passengers plays –
S “do u have any bombs?”
P ” ah, no, were just going to use stanley knives and see how things go”
smartasses dont blow people up, ass’oles do

Anonymous 2:08 pm 26 Apr 05

Thanks for all the info about weaknesses in Australian airport security: your advice will be very useful to my friends.

May Allah bless you all.

Ahmed Mohammed Yousef.

LurkerGal 1:56 pm 26 Apr 05

And a friend of mine took a full magazine (that’s wot holds the bullets, for the unitiated) through a metal detector at the Perth Airport and the machine DID NOT GO OFF!!!! (don’t try this at home kiddies – he wasn’t a passenger, he works there and was “testing out an idea”.

Meanwhile, the bloody 25 grams of metal I have in my heart sets it off every bloody time! Wierd.

bonfire 12:34 pm 26 Apr 05

im not sure how accurate these machines are.

last may after i’d been firing SMG’s all day my luggage (with the clothes id been wearing) managed to get through nashville airports enhanced security for Bush’s visit.

on the idiots who have been fined. im glad they have. what if they said they had bombs, the security guy laughed, checked him in and kaboom.

RandomGit 7:45 am 26 Apr 05

That security guard was fishing you.

That merely brushing past someone who has been making bombs is enough to get a positive set of ions on you is concern enough. They also pick up on any barbituates.

Where are the warning signs not to make these sorts of jokes, given that these rules do not apply in everyday life outside an airport? That I would rely on an anecdote like this to be aware of such policies is the real joke.

Nik_the_Pig 7:19 am 26 Apr 05

Actually if only they missed their flights then fine BUT by this time their luggage was on board and would have to be unloaded and EVERYONE on that flight would miss their flight/be delayed. A $750 fine is cheap, I’d want the buggers to pay for any loss on income, accommodation costs, alternate transport costs, etc incurred by every passenger because of any delays these buggers cause.

johnboy 5:46 pm 25 Apr 05

Well i’d imagine (and I m just guessing here) that the folks getting $1,000 fines aren’t ones who travel very much either.

sk8erboi 5:39 pm 25 Apr 05

Give the poor security people a break, they’re just trying to do their job and feed their families; last thing they need is a queue of wise-arses giving them lip.

johnboy 1:53 pm 25 Apr 05

i’m not saying they didn’t need extra scrutiny and if they miss their flights as a result I personally would have thought that was punishment enough.

if we’re going to start charging $1000 fines for stupidity then no government program will ever be underfunded again!

OK, you make a compelling argument…

vg 1:51 pm 25 Apr 05

Doing no harm? I think you’ll find the circumstances of the 3 quite similiar from what I’ve seen reported. They are asked if they have anything dangerous in their luggage, All 3 people replied that they had bombs or similiar when the sensible thing to do was to simply say ‘no’. This then required their luggage and themselves to be searched, and the whole situation caused the intelligent members of their flight to be delayed (miss connections etc).

The price you pay for being a smart arse. I’m all for it. All they needed to do was shut their mouths and be a little mature. Clearly it was beyond them

johnboy 12:18 pm 25 Apr 05

ABC Online are now also reporting that our comedian has been allowed to get out of town with a $750 fine.

You’d have hought a joke like this might warrant more thorough search, but it’s a crime too?

johnboy 11:22 am 25 Apr 05

I agree that’s how to get by in the current situation.

I’m just concerned that having established this standard we won’t see it spreading throughout society.

And I’m not at all convinced it’s actually making the skies safer.

Valleyboy 11:16 am 25 Apr 05

Then the onus is also on the security staff not to be seen to make jokes about it, either.

It’s just irresponsible to suggest to them that you might have weaponry on you or in your luggage. It sends them on a probable wild goose chase looking for it, and holds up screening for other people.

However, it will be a huge double standard if it means that the security staff can make smart-arse remarks to you, but if you attempt to counter likewise, they can slap a court case on you.

Answer only necessary stuff that you’re asked, don’t reciprocate any small talk from them, and otherwise non-relate to them as if they’re non-people. Hopefully, that should be enough to avoid the big court-case stick.

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