OnSafari: TSA Unhappy But Unarmed

OnSafari: TSA Unhappy But Unarmed

schipholarmedIt’s not just America arming itself to fight extremism. Lesson learned in Schiphol today.

I’m on my way to Africa for two months of guiding safaris. (Follow this space for some of the most fun and exciting safari stories you’ll find!) But yesterday and today is the dread of all far-distant travelers: traveling, that is.

It will take me just under 18 hours in an airplane to get to Joburg, my first destination, and I was enormously relieved when Congress funded DHS at least until I and my safari clients got out of the country. I actually chatted with one very disgruntled looking TSA agent at O’Hare.

It was a provocative question I posed: are you a Republic or a Democrat?

He almost laughed and then caught himself, but he managed as most any public employee within a hundred miles of Chicago would say, “Democrat” but then added looking away from me, “but all those bums ought to be strung up.”

I worry about TSA and other supposed security frontline personnel guarding us travelers when their livelihood is so threatened. What the powers-that-be don’t understand is that even the finest middle class, hard working souls in this day and age often live month-to-month.

A halt in pay, even temporary, is not fun.

My second surprise came in the lovely country of The Netherlands where I’m waiting now for my next flight. The airport has armed guards.

Of course I remember this from the other times I’ve flown through Schiphol, but I forget it quickly. I don’t remember our TSA armed, although some may be.

The war against whatever is worldwide and it’s scary, and it seems to me one of the best strategies our would-be enemies might employ is simply feeding some right wing Republicans a red meat enticement, like … your immigrants are going to take you over!

On to Africa!