DHS: You Have No Rights When You Fly

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A Washington Times article about the detention of a Campaign for Liberty employee in the St. Louis airport has some startling quotes from the Dept. of Homeland Security and TSA:

The Homeland Security agency further explained that carrying large amounts of cash through airport checkpoints “may be investigated by law enforcement authorities if criminal activity is suspected.”

“As a general rule, passengers are required to cooperate with the screening process. Cooperation may involve answering questions about their property, including why they are carrying a large sum of cash. A passenger who refuses to answer questions may be referred to appropriate authorities for further inquiry,” the TSA said.

So “large” amounts of cash constitute grounds for suspicion. (And is $4700 truly “large” when trillions of dollars are being printed?) Further, exercising your 1st and 5th Amendment rights to remain silent also make you a suspect. (Suspected of what?)

I haven’t been able to give up the modern convenience of flying, but these quotes may be a tipping point.

3:11 pm on April 8, 2009