What the I don't even... Found here. Thanks Erica!

UPDATE: This photo was taken by Trent Nelson, who is a friend of a friend (small world!). Of course I didn't know that when I posted it, as you can see from the link above where I found it there was no credit it. The photo is great, and the other photos by Trent are great too and he posted some back story on it and I'm psyched that the internets make finding connections and sources so easy, if a little after the fact. ;)


    1. lol It’s not that strange….I mean it’s always good to know what you are getting before you make commitment.

  1. I want that to be photoshopped, but you know it isn’t.

    BTW…. there are so many of these security theater images, that I’ve decided to collect them all on my new blog:

    The Daily Patdown

  2. I hear next year the TSA will start issuing each officer windowless vans and a bags of candy. You know, give you some privacy and make you feel better.

  3. Despite Larry’s best attempts at paint and spackle, the TSA agent din’t mistake the satchel of cocaine for a 3rd testicle.

  4. If that airport is anything like RDU, that station they’re at is probably in full view of anyone passing by while leaving security.

    1. “If that airport is anything like RDU, that station they’re at is probably in full view of anyone passing by while leaving security.”

      Of course it is. The stand is designed to humiliate patdown requestors and frighten/humiliate those passing by into full compliance.

  5. Abandon all dignity, ye who enter here.

    Personally I am a very shy person and I am not the type to even go half nude at the beach. I can’t imagine that I will ever board a plane again as long as these draconian search practices exist. I would rather build myself an expedition vehicle (my truck with a camper shell) and just drive around this continent than drop-trau in front of a TSA rep and the rest of the airport as well. We are just a step away from mandatory cavity searches. What really steams me about this whole issue is that we the american public are assumed to be guilty of terrorist intent just by the fact that we want to travel in a plane. When we go back to presuming innocence I will think about traveling by air, but until then I will roll on my own terms.

  6. For years I’ve already drove to my destination whenever I can, usually from where I am to where I was born (family, friends) 1800 total miles there and back.

    The problem for me is going to where I grew up. It’s an island in the Caribbean. I don’t relish the thought of dropping trou in public, because there is no alternative other than flying to get there.

    It still gets me that a 16 year old could climb the fence of a major airline hub and stow away in the landing gear of a passenger jet, yet some people have no objection to undressing in public for “safety,” including allowing their children to be essentially molested.

      1. Yes, but I am not going to pay for a cruise that I don’t want to go on to spend half a day there.

        /been on a lot of cruise ships, never on a cruise – one of my father’s businesses had a monopoly on selling bonded liquor to them

  7. Long before the porno scanners, I was told on more than occasion after setting off the walk through metal detector & then the hand wand metal detector that they would need to confirm by either sight or feel that the offending metal was not a prohibited item. I am guessing that this guy chose the sight option rather immediately and I applaud him for it.

    Side note, it was never jewelry that caused the problem but usually heavy zippers, buttons, and the like

  8. “No, I’ll wait until I can see the whole tattoo.”

    “Oh. You really do have Prince Albert in a can.”

    “Cool! Now make it nod.”

  9. I thought for sure somebody would have beat me to this one. Fine, I’ll do it:

    “Look at this banana. Just look at it.”

  10. “I’m sorry, I just figured the rules were the same here as when that undercover officer searched me in the turnpike restroom.”

    1. That proves nothing. The photographer was quite far away he doesn’t know what was said or what the traveler was asked to do. The commentary on your link is his interpretation of what he saw.

  11. I took this photo for The Salt Lake Tribune the day before the opt-out day protest. It’s the Salt Lake City airport in Utah. Tried to ask the traveler some questions, but he ran off to his gate. The TSA guy seemed pretty surprised when the guy pulled his pants down. A surreal scene.

    1. That’s not a halo, that’s an edge. The same size or smaller than the “halos” around the footprints on the mat.

    1. I’ve totally considered that option—its really hard to be offensive as a female. But then you’d need to change afterward and I have this vision of them moving you to a private room for a couple of hours just for kicks.

      1. Sure, that’s why you do just 2 or 3 ounces at a time. I load up with a giant slurpee beforehand and I can keep it going for 24 hours. And then of course there’s the nuclear option. That’s right, I’m talking dumping a load, once they get you in the interrogation room. And smearing it all over the walls and yourself.

        Granted, you have to be able to abide this yourself, but if you’ve ever dealt with kids it can’t be that bad.

  12. In a sad commentary on how low the TSA hiring practices have fallen, this officer doesn’t even know what a priest looks like.

  13. I’m glad to see something about the TSA scandal. I was starting to think the Wikileaks scandal(s) had made us forget all about the TSA.

  14. Not flying to the States any time soon. I just finished recovery from being programmed as a Cristian, and I want to avoid any similar ‘imprints’.

    1. It was plain gold until he exposed it to backscatter radiation. Then it has some squiggly writing on it in a language that nobody could read. At any rate, he said, “I will take the ring.”

  15. TO those who declared that they’re not visiting the U.S. anytime soon, due to the TSA gropery:

    Can’t say as I blame you. I was born here. I can’t begin to describe how angry this make me and how embarrassed I am by all this.

    “The only thing we have to fear is, fear itself!”

    FDR said that in 1933. Only 77 years ago.

    We are now a nation of cowards, scared of a boogyman hiding in a cave.

  16. “Sorry, sir, I still can’t take your word that those are Depends. Now hold still while I give a little squeeze and see what trickles down your leg.”

    “Yeah, that’s pee and not C4. Have a good day.”

  17. Ray Bradbury was right, our country is in need of a revolution. Why the heck would someone even cooperate with this? Oh yeah, cuz if they don’t they’ll get tased or something.

  18. Why is it that all the same people who give me crap about my gas mileage are now all uppity about their sudden god-given right to air travel? There is something decidedly conservative-minded about this liberal talking point. I am not the Maharaja of my SUV. That’s why everyone who rides in it gets to grope my balls.

  19. .
    i’m debating…
    “these are not the ‘nads you’re looking for”
    “these are not the ‘roids you’re looking for”
    “this is not the groin you’re looking for”
    move along

    1. Yeah just wait for the “prostate” exams.

      /turned 40 recently, and due to family history I now have to consent to this in private with a real doctor

  20. I’m slightly disappointed no one has wrapped a cucumber in tin foil, ala Spinal Tap’s “Derek Smalls.”

    Their’s no prohibition against vegetables, and a cucumber is not a weapon.

  21. Hey, I got patted down in SLC just a few weeks ago coming back from Thanksgiving, and while airports all have that weird generic feeling to them, I somehow thought this was in the SLC airport even before I read the description. Maybe that TSA guy was in my screening area? He wasn’t my screener though, as I had a woman conduct my patdown. (I had two guards telling me that if I would just have picked another line, I wouldn’t have had to go through the scanner, and I wouldn’t have had to opt out. This is despite the fact that I was heading to the metal detector standing next to the scanner when they waved me over. They repeated this several times as if I would somehow realise that this patdown was ALL MY FAULT.)

    And yes, the area where I was patted down was in plain view, although really if asked if I wanted privacy, I would have requested it be done right there. A) I’d prefer NOT to be alone in a room with a TSA agent. B) Might as well show where all this creeping security theatre is taking us. Blech.

    I also have white, able-bodied, cis privilege. I’m not presenting as a gender people don’t associate with my genitalia. I’m not fat. I’m not carrying a prosthetic or medical device that could get damaged. (Well, I have my CPAP machine which I leave at home despite assurances that I’m supposed to be able to fly with it.) So it was a mild inconvenience for me, but for other people it will not be and on top of it all, I feel it is an unreasonable search violating my 4th amendment.

  22. apparently the tsa agent was just trying to inspect this guys waist band when he willingly dropped his pants without being asked to, hilarious yes, a reason to quit flying altogether because u dont wanna drop ur pants in public? um….nope.

  23. These moments should be reserved for you and your wife…or your doctor… but not some guy with a porno mustache and a comb-over…that is unless you’re in to that kind of thing.

    I think I’ve flown for the very last time.

  24. I watched FurryGirl’s video where she wore see through clothing then made her PUT ON a jacket to do the pat down. I wish this photographer had got a picture of her as her video was mostly of the inside of the x-ray machine.

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