Airport Screening Machines and Marijuana: Good Catches?

  • by Allen St. Pierre, Former NORML Executive Director December 27, 2010

    From December 26 Washington Post: “The full-body scanners in use at 78 U.S. airports can detect small amounts of contraband and hidden weapons, all while producing controversial images of travelers.

    The “good catches,” federal officials say, have largely gone unnoticed amid the criticism that erupted over the ghostly X-rays and “enhanced” pat downs. The Transportation Security Administration, which intensified airport screening last month, points to several successes: small amounts of marijuana wrapped in baggies, other drugs stitched inside underwear, ceramic knives concealed in shirt pockets.”

    Check out photos of airline travelers busted for cannabis here.

    With over 1,000 of these high tech scanning devices deployed at airports by our Reefer Madness-loving federal government, cannabis consumers need to pay special attention when attempting to travel with their medical or recreational cannabis supply.

    Question: Do you feel safer knowing that the feds are spending billions annually on technology that is largely used on busting passengers with small amounts of a dried vegetable matter that possesses strong healing and mild psychotropic properties?

    Answer: I’ll bet hip-hop legend Kurtis Blow doesn’t feel any safer after getting popped by TSA scanners for a little bit of ganja earlier this month.

    61 responses to “Airport Screening Machines and Marijuana: Good Catches?”

    1. Brian says:

      DO NOT KEEP CONTRABAND ON YOUR PERSON. You can safely keep personal use amounts in your checked luggage using a variety of easy/basic methods. I safely travel even on international flights this way. I repeat, DO NOT KEEP IT ON YOUR PERSON WHEN YOU FLY. It is NOT safe. FUCK the TSA.

      And on another note. The DEA has been WikiLeaked. Hoping for a NORML write-up. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/26/world/26wikidrugs.html?_r=2&hp

    2. SHEA says:


    3. John says:

      I went on a vacation to Jamaica in June 2010.

      On my return trip from Montego Bay, I was selected for extra screening. I went through this process four times.

      After the metal detector/xray, I was taken into a side room and my person and belongings were hand searched. Intrusive, but no big deal.

      At the gate for a large American Airline, I was subjected to a second search in the jetway between the ticket taker and the plane. At that point a marijuana seed or seeds were allegedly found in my belongings… by a PRIVATE security guard.

      The Airline gate manager called the police who eventually showed up 30 minutes later. The plane would have left early, but now was going to leave late.

      My bags were pulled off of the plane and hand searched. They were very full, and when the “thorough search of my belongings was completed, the police officers had a hard time zipping one of my bags closed. Now I want to point out that two police officers hand searched my two bags. One had even done a very through search of a backpack contained in one of them, and the 15 or so small places something could have been hidden in. The officer that had just finished checking the backpack asked if I could carry the backpack that was in the bag that wouldn’t zip. I refused. I got a very dirty look. She attempted to hand it to me again. I asked if she was joking. She said no and continued to stare me down while holding the backpack for me to take.

      I then pointed out what a joke this whole process was, because in the backpack that they were attempting to hand me were various pointy objects including pocket knives, scissors anything else I couldn’t carry on a plane. Apparently, marijuana seeds were a threat to air travel, but knives were not… at that moment.

      They then asked if I could help them zip up the bag, which I did while continuing to point out what an idiotic search and waste of time and effort this was, all spawned by a PRIVATE security guard for a large American Airline.

      Feel safer? I sure don’t.

    4. Nic says:

      How do ‘they scan a soul ?

    5. Joel says:

      Two more years of this crap!

    6. Cobb says:

      Too bad, americans will wake up when they are being executed in concentration camps.

    7. Mark says:

      I made this video and was all over this topic a month ago, but a lot of people said I was crazy. Turns out I was dead on balls accurate. Watch please.

    8. Emory says:

      There is growing research that shows these machines doing damage to DNA strands by agitating DNA to the point where it causes air gaps in DNA… (something we have no idea of long term side effects)

      Look it up for yourself. These are BS and I will refuse to walk through them. If that means I can no longer fly, then oh well.

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