Security Check

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I recently went on a business trip to Vancouver and of course went by plane. I was up early and packed my bags ever so carefully keeping in mind the strict rules that the airlines and airports have these days in lieu of post 911 fears of terrorist blowing up airplanes or taking out buildings somewhere in the United States. It seems funny to me that these rules were made in the US and then adopted by us in Canada… and even years after… we still have “security” coming out of the ying yang… or do we?

Lets think about this for a moment. Personally since “911” I have traveled extensively throughout the US and Canada. I was actually on a plane two weeks after the Twin Towers went down… a trip to Dallas I recall. Now that was security…soldiers in fatigues carrying machine guns, mission specialist wired into computer systems, dogs, ID Checks, bag checks… the works! I didn’t mind… actually I felt safe.

Fast-forward a few years to present day. I pack my bags taking into consideration that I can only have a tiny bag that fits only the bare essentials for personal hygiene and I mean bare essential… I don’t even take a toothbrush or toothpaste any more… I’ll buy them when I get to where I am going… I opt for cologne and hair paste (gotta look and smell good). I then pack a computer hard drive that is mounted in a hard drive case. I pack all the wires and power supply in the same bag.

I get to the airport that morning and head into the line for the security check. As I pass by the first fellow he asks if I have any liquids, gels so on. I say yes and he holds up the mini bag and asked if I have them in a bag such as he is holding… I nod yes and move on to the second fellow looking at tickets. He glances at my ticket and directs me into a line up for the last stage of “security”. Since I have been through the drill before I have already dumped all my change, opted to not wear a belt and I am starting to take my computer out of my brief case, add the phone and slide everything onto the conveyor belt that effortlessly takes my bags through the x-ray machine. As I wait on the other side of the metal detector… I see the security person stop my bag and take a good look…then she motions to the other security screener that they should look at my bag. I figure that they want to make sure the item that looks like a bomb and that has the wiring and case and lights and metal and parts that look like a bomb is in fact not one…. They ask to open my bag and of course I agree. They dig through my belongings and low and behold bring out the item of their attention… the bag of personal items… you remember, hair paste cologne… underarm deodorant!!!!

What the hell?

I have the makings of what could be a bomb and security is focused on hair paste?

I have now been through five security personal, never been asked for identification of any sort, I am carrying items that look like a bomb and security is worried that my cologne bottle is over 100ML even though it has less than half the liquid in it.

I don’t get it.

When did this happen? How did this happen? What does hair paste and cologne have to do with taking down an airliner or crashing into buildings or terrorists or security for that matter? Why were there no questions about the thing that LOOKED like a bomb?

What have we become and what has this world come to? Who made these rules?

I am truly at a loss. A number of us travel all year long. It is taxing at best but an essential part of us spreading the word of our talents and the great talent we have here in Manitoba… I just sometimes wonder how did WE let this happen. As Canadians I think we are non confrontational to begin with…go with the flow… follow the US… They say no hair paste then dammit we’re gonna ban hair paste! The only thing that we stand on our own is the great music that is created in Canada… it is uniquely ours, we came up with it and no one is gonna take it away from …

Not even airport security!

You can take my hair paste…but you’ll never get my Weakerthans CD!

Canada 1, US 0


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