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The other side of security--a no win scenario

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The other side of security--a no win scenario

Old 5th Jun 2002, 14:43
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Thumbs down The other side of security--a no win scenario

Well, you knew it had to happen. There's no way to "win" in this new terrorist environment:
  • ACLU: Airlines Discriminated Against Passengers Who Seemed Middle Eastern


    NEW YORK (AP) - New lawsuits filed by the American Civil Liberties Union accuse airlines of illegally removing passengers who looked Middle Eastern.
    The five lawsuits, filed Tuesday in California, Maryland and New Jersey, said five men were removed from flights last year because of their skin color. Four of the passengers are U.S. citizens and the fifth is a permanent legal resident. Two of the five are of Arab descent.

    ACLU attorney Reginald Shuford blamed poor airline policies drawn up to respond to the threat of terrorism since Sept. 11.

    Among the plaintiffs was Edgardo Cureg, 34, who said he was ordered off a Continental flight bound from Newark, N.J., to Tampa, Fla., on Dec. 31 because another passenger complained he and two other men had acted suspiciously.

    "I spent the saddest New Year's Eve of my life alone, exhausted and depressed, with a bitter taste that lingers in my soul to this day," said Cureg, a permanent U.S. resident from the Philippines.

    Michael Dasrath, 32, of New York said he was forced off the same flight after another passenger glared at him and told the captain, "Those brown-skinned men are behaving suspiciously."

    The ACLU also charged that men were removed from a Northwest flight on Oct. 23, an American flight on Oct. 31 and a United flight on Dec. 23.

    The lawsuits ask federal courts to declare that the airlines' actions violated the men's civil rights and to order the airlines to prevent future discrimination.

    A United representative declined to comment on the lawsuits. Continental spokesman Rahsaan Johnson said the airline has a "strong policy against discrimination in any form."

    Northwest spokeswoman Mary Beth Schubert said: "We are satisfied that our employees acted in accordance with FAA security directive and federal regulations in denying boarding to him. The action was not based on his ethnic background."

    American said that it was "enormously disappointed" by the lawsuits and that it has a long commitment to diversity.

    The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee said it had received more than 60 reports since Sept. 11 telling how more than 100 people perceived to be Arab-Americans were forced off flights.

    Another lawsuit citing discrimination was filed Tuesday by the Texas Civil Rights Project.

    Mohammed Ali Ahmed, a 41-year-old financial planner for Motorola who lives in Austin, Texas, sued American, alleging he and his children were traumatized when a jittery pilot had him removed from a plane on Sept. 29. Source
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Old 5th Jun 2002, 20:41
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I am not a fan of the American way of living life through the courts - but on this I agree.

The Americans have yet to learn why they were attacked. They have yet to learn about the world that exists beyond their coastline.

If it stands up in court - they will have to learn.
If it falls down in court - then I think that it will be very sad and cruel.

I grew up in South Africa, I have seen unfounded allegations and bias at first hand.
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Old 6th Jun 2002, 18:06
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>The Americans have yet to learn why they were attacked. They >have yet to learn about the world that exists beyond their >coastline. <End of stupid quote>

PAXboy:

Without getting into a political debate here. The American's certainly know WHO attacked them. 19 Middle Eastern men. In each case I fully support the Captain's decision to throw these men off their airplane. If there was any doubt in my mind that these people were up to no good, I would have done the same thing as any competent Captain out there should.

As to your anti-American propaganda. Keep it where it belongs. Pick up a history book and check out SA's government as well as the UK's and Pakistan or wherever you're from, and see how much you agree with before you start the yank bashing.

Oh, and have a nice day.
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Old 6th Jun 2002, 20:32
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We all know how difficult it is to tell the exact country of origin of people, even when living in the area. 'Middle Eastern' covers too many countries.

I am fully aware of the history of Britain as a dominating colonial power and it can be read by anyone. What makes America different is that it is doing it's dominating now and in a different way to any previous country.

When Britain was subjugating people, they had the advantage of no television or radio and a compliant press. The USA has none of those. It is fascinating to see history taking place.

However ... when in South Africa, just because there is a high chance of being robbed and killed, should I have every 'suspicious' looking person thrown off the bus, pitched out from the hotel?
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Old 6th Jun 2002, 20:40
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easy boys ...
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Old 9th Jun 2002, 13:02
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P Factor, I had a caucasian Swiss national try to let himself into the flight deck, post 9/11.

Do you think I should disallow all caucasions from boarding?
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Old 11th Jun 2002, 02:27
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P Factor,

Come on! There was no anti-american propaganda in there. PaxBoy was voicing a valid view which a lot of us "non-americans" hold. Every major power in history has created unrest through its involvement (requested or otherwise) in other countries internal affairs. Most Americans (especially those that stay at home) however, don`t realise the reasons for the hatred that has risen in some areas and the levels that it can reach in some more fanatical cultures. Hence paranoia starts. Thats been the story since the Romans.

(Statements about an "axis of evil" don`t help to keep the situation under control unfortunately.)

Maybe we are hoping that the US will learn from the mistakes of history and solve the problems that cause the hatred AS WELL AS fighting terrorism.

(Sorry to prolong the political argument)
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Old 11th Jun 2002, 17:14
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Thanks Nihontraveller, that is my view. If the Americans do not learn how they are viewed by the rest of the world, they will continue to be at risk - and us in Europe too!

The USA has worked hard to become a super-power, now that they are, it appears that they are not sure what to do with it. If they continue to issue threats and support one government against another, then they are at risk.

For example, the USA appear to have no idea just how much we in Europe are astounded at their relentless support of the Israeli forces. That is not to say that the Palestinians are a bunch of angels but, at the moment, they have nothing to lose and will continue the ghastly sequence of suicide bombers. After all, if you know that the mighty USA hates you and publicly supports your opponent then, truly, you have lost already.

Please know that it gives me no joy to put this view forward but it is how I (and friends) view the USA.
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