Thoughts, essays, and writings on Liberty. Written by the heirs of Patrick Henry.

April 9, 2007

Just What Gets You On The “No Fly” List ?

by Doug Mataconis

According to this post at Balkanization, people are ended upon on the Transportation Security Administration’s “no-fly” list for what appears to be their political beliefs:

On 1 March 07, I was scheduled to fly on American Airlines to Newark, NJ, to attend an academic conference at Princeton University, designed to focus on my latest scholarly book, Constitutional Democracy, published by Johns Hopkins University Press this past Thanksgiving.”

“When I tried to use the curb-side check in at the Sunport, I was denied a boarding pass because I was on the Terrorist Watch list. I was instructed to go inside and talk to a clerk. At this point, I should note that I am not only the McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence (emeritus) but also a retired Marine colonel. I fought in the Korean War as a young lieutenant, was wounded, and decorated for heroism. I remained a professional soldier for more than five years and then accepted a commission as a reserve office, serving for an additional 19 years.”

“I presented my credentials from the Marine Corps to a very polite clerk for American Airlines. One of the two people to whom I talked asked a question and offered a frightening comment: “Have you been in any peace marches? We ban a lot of people from flying because of that.” I explained that I had not so marched but had, in September, 2006, given a lecture at Princeton, televised and put on the Web, highly critical of George Bush for his many violations of the Constitution. “That’ll do it,” the man said. “

The author is Professor Walter F. Murphy, emeritus of Princeton University, a professor of the Constitution. As the comments to the post note, if this is true, then it’s fairly outrageous and a sign that the TSA is out of control.

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  • http://www.yedies.blogspot.com Judy Aron

    I just found your blog.. I plan to be a regular reader. Great job and great format! Thanks for promoting Liberty.

    Now about that No Fly List.. no doubt about it TSA is out of control if this story is true.

  • AT QB

    Not sure this story really passes the “smell test” to me.

  • http://www.thelibertypapers.org/ Adam Selene

    well, we have the claim of what occurred. From someone that should be, overall, a credible source. I know nothing about him, though. I’d be interested in his background. On the other hand, we have the TSA. Which is really not a credible source, all things considered. So, presuming that Murphy doesn’t have a background that would discredit him as a reliable source, I see no reason not to accept his story. With a grain of salt, obviously.

    Tell me why I should trust this Administration or the TSA instead.

  • AT QB

    I’d rather have some corroberation or multiple reports…that’s all. I’m not asking you to believe anyone.

    Why doesn’t it pass my smell test? It’s just that the president has many critics even among former allies. That list would get to be pretty big.

  • AT QB

    OH..that and I know nothing about his background either.

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