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Delta Passenger Fined $500 for apple

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Delta Passenger Fined $500 for apple

Old 27th Apr 2018, 00:31
  #121 (permalink)  
 
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This could only happen in the USA. The rest of the world has commom sense.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 02:18
  #122 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by svhar View Post
This could only happen in the USA. The rest of the world has commom sense.
I have to laugh at all these ridiculous excuse-makers. They say...hey its only one apple. Well then...is it OK for two apples, after all it is only one more than one apple. If two apples are OK then what about three apples. One can keep going on forever. A dozen apples and a banana? After all, it is only a single banana on top of the dozen apples which is only one more than 11 apples. Where does it stop?

How about...don't try to smuggle food in when you are not supposed to.

As for the stupid statement of ..."it could only happen in the USA" and common sense statements...you only prove your bias and/or ignorance. We had a pilot get a fine along with the company for trying to bring an apple into Japan,

So stop your whining/excuse-making and follow the rules. Forgot about the apple? OK, could happen. Try to tell that to the officer. Admit that you were breaking the rules, even if it was a lie to cover up your forgetfulness will possibly bring a punishment.

Kind of like telling the traffic cop that you were intentionally speeding because you don't want to admit that you forgot what the speed limit is.

In either case, one should be happy that there is no fine for being stupid if they actually thought that would make things better.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 03:57
  #123 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by svhar View Post
Where I live all fruit is imported. You can take an apple from Sweden to Denmark or Spain and nobody cares. What is the problem in the USA?
The problem is that fruit imported from another country may be bearing insects or disease which could then infect/infest the crops within the country destroying the crops. the disease or insects are likely to be far more destructive than in their country of origin because of the lack of local predators or resistance of local strains to the effects. This isn't some sort of hypothetical fear. Look up Chestnut Blight and Dutch Elm Disease which were accidentally introduced to the US and devastated the local trees. The Chestnut Blight was particularly destructive. It essentially wiped out an entire species of tree, The American Chestnut.

Originally Posted by svhar View Post
This could only happen in the USA. The rest of the world has commom sense.
BS. Australia and Japanese far more strict and enthusiastic about their bio-security than the US. I haven't traveled to New Zealand, but I've heard that they are also. I guarantee you that if you had an apple in your baggage and claimed you didn't entering Australia, and thier fruit sniffing dogs found it, and the agent believed you had done it intentionally, you'd very likely get a fine there too.

Last edited by A Squared; 27th Apr 2018 at 04:10.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 04:26
  #124 (permalink)  
 
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I think you misunderstand me completely

Originally Posted by PukinDog View Post
That high horse you think I'm on is just an illusion generated from you not reading or listening to the woman's own words.
I don't particularly think that the $500 fine or cancellation of Global Entry are overkill. And that's not my point.

My point is that this is a world in which countries as varied as China, Turkey, India, Egypt, Hungary, Poland, and the United States seem to have moved well past flirting with fascism and are now enthusiastically kissing fascism on the lips. And what I'm reading on here, from you and others, first with the United passenger fiasco in Chicago and again with this woman, in your seeming delight in her punishment, is hard to interpret any way other than approval of of an authoritarian take on life. I didn't much like that movie in the original German, and I don't like it much now either; I find authoritarianism personally offensive.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 05:43
  #125 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by obgraham View Post
Well although I'm on record here as being somewhat sympathetic to the woman's outcome, I do live in an area that produces the 2/3 of the US apple supply. Along with cherries and loads of other fruit. The potential harm from outside fruit entering a fruit-growing area is enormous. Here we have strict controls to avoid the apple maggot fly. Asian countries have specific requirements on how American fruit is treated before allowing it into their countries. All very necessary.

My argument in this case is that the agent could have simply confiscated the apple, told the woman why, and moved on to a more significant issue. But no, everyone had to get their shorts in a bunch over this one.
If the woman had answered "Yes" at the Global Entry kiosk to the "bringing in fruit" question it would have directed her to the Agent handling Declared items, who would have mostly likely handled it just as you suggest; confiscation along with some verbal education that fruit doesn't become exempt from importation controls just because the airline gave it away as an inflight snack. If she had not been a Global Entry passenger, even answering 'No" she may have gotten much the same with no fine.

But she was a Global Entry passenger (as the Agent would be very well aware) and as such pre-educated on the basic details of entering the country and, therefore, held to a higher standard in the honor system. She blew her privilege by giving an excuse ("Delta gave it to me, didn't warn me") to the Agent that indicates, at best, she made her own determination that the particular fruit was somehow exempt from clear importation rules erring on the side of "Oh, It's okay", never bothering to find out if that was the correct assumption. She was on her way out when they pulled her up in a random search. So she lost the trust, and is the only one with the bunched shorts; moaning to the media, upset she lost her Global Entry privileges, still dishing-up the "Delta gave it to me" excuse because she STILL believes "that's the most important thing to the story". The Agent in question fined her $500, so he actually showed some leniency by levying only one-half the Stupidity Tax he could have.

Yes, a Stupidity Tax. As a pre-educated Global Entry she crossed the threshold from being merely "Ignorant" into "Stupid" when she assumed on the side of "Oh, it's okay" while acting as her own Customs Agent for something as basic and clearly, repeatedly, explained as fruit importation. People get fined and penalized every day for this sort of thing at entry points across the U.S. and around the world entering other countries, but for some reason the media has chosen to give this "typical suburban woman coming home from Paris" a microphone and airtime as if it's an unusual or important story because she believes her penalties were somehow unfair and she claims she's been "treated like a criminal".

The media is only enabling her continued stupidity, and by taking her groundless grousing seriously only encourages others to believe it's "unfair" as well. If she does end up in court, it's sure she'll lose but the media won't do a follow-up that cites details because it'll reveal and emphasize just how clueless she is. She's been cast in the media as a sympathetic figure, but the judge isn't going to have any sympathy.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 07:25
  #126 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PukinDog View Post
I don't need to disprove your speculation when you have absolutely nothing to support it.
Nor I yours, for the same reason. I'm not the one who's repeating the same assertion over and over again in the hope that we'll all give up and accept it as the only possible explanation, when there are other scenarios that fit the facts.

Looks like we're done here.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 11:15
  #127 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by svhar View Post
This could only happen in the USA. The rest of the world has commom sense.
You need to travel a bit more if you truly believe this, and you'll find that the U.S. is actually less stringent that some when it comes to declaring items, what needs to be declared, and the penalties for not doing so. Australia is well known for it's stringent declaration requirements and penalties. Not only for fruits and vegetables, but all food. Wood items are also included. For instance, if you buy a souvenir made or partially made from wood, it falls under this...

www.agriculture.gov.au/.../goods/.../personal_imports_of_timber_and_wooden_relate...
2. Declare it. All wooden, bamboo and related articles entering Australia must be declared to a departmental officer on arrival, whether or not you believe you have complied with all import conditions. How you import the item will determine how you declare it.
Got that?....Declaring the item is a "Must Do", no matter what the person believes about the item. Same for the lady in the U.S. with the apple...declaring is a "Must Do". Of course, unlike the U.S. the entire cabin of an aircraft going into Australia will have to be sprayed to comply with their Disinsection requirements, along with proof, signed forms, including the lot number of the cans sprayed, and if you're traveling within Australia internal checks and controls are common as well. For instance, if you buy fruit...say, bananas from the Philippines... at a grocery store in one part of the country you may not be able to bring it into another, it'll be confiscated. When you go to a grocery store at your destination to replace your bananas, you may end up buying new ones grown and imported from the same Philippine banana plantation as the ones they just confiscated.

Don't think it's much more lenient in NZ. Try to bring some honey on a sandwich into NZ, and animal importation and quarantine rules are just as severe and inflexible as Australia. When Christchurch was hit with the earthquake a few years ago and search and rescue teams that specialize in rubble rescue from the U.S. and Japan were dispatched with their heavy equipment to help find those missing and buried that might have been alive, New Zealand ordered those teams to leave one of there most valuable assets.. their highly- trained, human-sniffing dogs who's specialty is to find people buried under rubble....behind because NZ would not waive their animal quarantine rules, not even with lives at stake.

Japan is another country where they take their Agricultural importation rules extremely seriously. If you arrive at a Japanese airport with no garbage incinerator set up for international trash, all the trash on the aircraft will have to remain and be locked-up on the aircraft, and flown out when the aircraft departs. Being fined for ignoring their rules is common, woe to anyone not declaring what they should, it will come as no surprise.

But the one thing all countries who have rules banning and declaring agricultural good and animals will tell you, they are common sense. Invasive species cost the agricultural industries billions and no controls or enforcement wind up wiping out native plant and animal species. And in every one of those countries there are penalties for disregarding the rules, and every day people get penalized for disregarding them. Just because you're not seeing it on TV or isn't reported by the BBC parroting the latest US media nonsense doesn't mean it isn't happening.
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Old 27th Apr 2018, 23:33
  #128 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PukinDog View Post
I'm going by the woman's own words. What are you going on to suppose her forgetfulness? Something she never claimed or mentioned that's clear, not even after the fact when she's had time to think about it while moaning to the media. So that leaves pure speculation based on nothing more than "people can forget things" unless you have something more. I don't need to disprove your speculation when you have absolutely nothing to support it. The only "facts" here would be her words, the only excuse she herself has given.

I find it kind of amusing that others are riding-in to provide her with more excuses she hadn't thought of herself. She certainly doesn't have any trouble saying how she was "treated like a criminal", after all. I believe she can make her own things up just fine.

She answered "No" at the kiosk. She was searched and found out she didn't declare it. Put to question, why didn't she declare it, she uses the excuse "Delta gave it to me" which explains nothing when it comes to declaring "I am brining in Fruits, veg..etc.. Yes or No" and answering "No". Nothing about "I forgot" was spoken anywhere and you can be absolutely sure she was asked why she answered "No" on her form. "Delta gave it to me, Delta should have told me" aren't even in the ball park and yet she claims it's the most important thing.

No wonder they fined her. Like the kiosk, they probably couldn't get a straight answer out of her either except one that basically says "Delta gave it to me, I thought it was okay, its just an apple". None of it explains why she answered "No". Neither does your speculation. I could hypothesize a sudden case of cross-eyedness at the kiosk and it would have as much weight.
I suspect the average passenger (eg. me) would interpret 'I am bringing in fruits, veg etc.' to refer to something specifically being imported by the passenger - such as a live plant or seeds - that have been sourced in another country. I would understand the reasons for these being a problem. I'm not sure I would necessarily see a piece of food given to me by cabin crew on board the plane as being an import in the same sense. It could have been a muffin, or a yoghurt, or a chocolate bar. I would assume the airline wouldn't have served it to me unless it had been 'approved' in some sense. This seems to me basic common sense in the normal world of paying passengers, tired after a long journey.

I'd be interested to know if airlines emphasise to passengers that fruit-based snacks served on board should be disposed off before disembarking? I don't think I've ever heard such an announcement.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 01:01
  #129 (permalink)  
 
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Sorry, not going to wade back through 128 posts, but has the original Country of Birth of the apple been determined, e.g. was it a piece of,say, Californian fruit in the first place, that had been given a long ride ?

If so wot's the problem, unless it had been sprayed with some Russian nerve gas whilst on the transit in Paris ?
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 01:48
  #130 (permalink)  
 
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If so wot's the problem
You have to be able to prove the providence of the item by means of an agricultural declaration. Think the airline is going to go to that trouble when they hand out an item of food?

Brought some wooden items in following a trip, duly declared and no issues following inspection. If they have doubts they offer a fumigation process for a small fee, if you don't wish to pay it's destroyed.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 02:32
  #131 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by svhar View Post
This could only happen in the USA. The rest of the world has commom sense.
Enormously disappointed in this comment Svhar. It is totally unwarranted and, I would have thought, quite unworthy of you.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 02:55
  #132 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PaxBritannica View Post
I suspect the average passenger (eg. me) would interpret 'I am bringing in fruits, veg etc.' to refer to something specifically being imported by the passenger - such as a live plant or seeds - that have been sourced in another country. I would understand the reasons for these being a problem. I'm not sure I would necessarily see a piece of food given to me by cabin crew on board the plane as being an import in the same sense. It could have been a muffin, or a yoghurt, or a chocolate bar. I would assume the airline wouldn't have served it to me unless it had been 'approved' in some sense. This seems to me basic common sense in the normal world of paying passengers, tired after a long journey.

I'd be interested to know if airlines emphasise to passengers that fruit-based snacks served on board should be disposed off before disembarking? I don't think I've ever heard such an announcement.
It seems that your "basic common sense" is not necessarily universal and probably not terribly common.
Why would you "assume the airline wouldn't have served it to me unless it had been 'approved' in some sense" if the sense is anything other than it being fit for consumption.
I certainly would not assume that the airline has pre-approved it for import into the destination country.

For Australia at least (and probably NZ, Canada, etc.) the declaration lists numerous classifications of items which must be declared.
By declaring them they may be allowed through, depending on source and packaging. I don't like your chances with the yoghurt (dairy) and probably not the muffin (grains, fruit).
By not declaring any of them, or any other food item, you will be liable for a fine.

The penalty is not normally related to the nature of the item. It's not $100 for an apple, $200 for two and $1000 for a squid.
The penalty is for "making a false declaration".

As per my previous post, if the officer suspects that you have been telling fibs he may give you a chance to change your mind, plead insanity, or what ever.
If you try to bluff your way through then expect to be fined.
That is pretty well understood in these parts.

I'd be interested to know if airlines emphasise to passengers that fruit-based snacks served on board should be disposed off before disembarking?
Yes, sometimes. Not always.
International flights into Australia frequently have a short documentary from the Oz Quarantine authorities on the entertainment system. Not specifically from the airline, but close enough.
IIRC this comes up during descent whether you select it or not.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 03:28
  #133 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PaxBritannica View Post
I'd be interested to know if airlines emphasise to passengers that fruit-based snacks served on board should be disposed off before disembarking? I don't think I've ever heard such an announcement.
A few years ago, I was traveling fairly often the Australia, usually on Delta, but occasionally on QANTAS or Virgin. I recall one or more of those airlines giving warnings not to disembark with foodstuffs from cabin service. I don't recall for sure which one(s) did that.

Last edited by A Squared; 28th Apr 2018 at 11:53.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 03:56
  #134 (permalink)  
 
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How is the left over fruit handled by Delta? And/or customs.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 04:01
  #135 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by IBMJunkman View Post
How is the left over fruit handled by Delta? And/or customs.
Stays on the plane or goes into sealed garbage bags which are incinerated.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 09:43
  #136 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ExSp33db1rd View Post
Sorry, not going to wade back through 128 posts, but has the original Country of Birth of the apple been determined, e.g. was it a piece of,say, Californian fruit in the first place, that had been given a long ride ?

If so wot's the problem, unless it had been sprayed with some Russian nerve gas whilst on the transit in Paris ?
Who knows where the fruit originated from. It would however have been boarded in Paris. It was in the snack bag passed out during the last part of the flight.
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 20:14
  #137 (permalink)  
 
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What might have left eggs/spores on a Californian apple while it was outwith California?
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Old 28th Apr 2018, 21:06
  #138 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by PaxBritannica View Post
I suspect the average passenger (eg. me) would interpret 'I am bringing in fruits, veg etc.' to refer to something specifically being imported by the passenger - such as a live plant or seeds - that have been sourced in another country. I would understand the reasons for these being a problem. I'm not sure I would necessarily see a piece of food given to me by cabin crew on board the plane as being an import in the same sense. It could have been a muffin, or a yoghurt, or a chocolate bar. I would assume the airline wouldn't have served it to me unless it had been 'approved' in some sense. This seems to me basic common sense in the normal world of paying passengers, tired after a long journey.

I'd be interested to know if airlines emphasise to passengers that fruit-based snacks served on board should be disposed off before disembarking? I don't think I've ever heard such an announcement.
Undoubtedly there are some, as you say, "average, normal passengers" who make that incorrect assumption, although I disagree that assumption falls into the basic common sense category. The question asked on the Declaration Form and/or Kiosk is very specific, straightforward, and unqualified requiring a simple "Yes or No" answer. Common sense would tells person to read the question and answer it honestly and straightforwardly. A passenger with common sense knows one can't decide for themselves what exceptions and exemptions exist. A passenger with common sense doesn't invent qualifiers if they aren't spelled-out. They aren't trick questions, or hard questions, it isn't a test. They're designed and worded to be easily understood by average, normal passengers. However, I can see how someone with the propensity to make life difficult for themselves by overcomplicating simple ideas or tasks because they don't read instructions, read things into what's not written, doesn't pay attention or try to absorb information could make that assumption. But all the aforementioned are traits of not those having little or no common sense. Average, normal passengers who read the question and simply answer the question as written aren't going to have a problem. Problems only arise when people try to get creative or cute. That being said....

This lady, however, wasn't an "average, normal passenger", not in the eyes of the CBP. She asked-for and was granted Global Entry status with expedited entry privileges, which means she had previously put herself forth to the CBP as a person who could be trusted, completed a CBP vetting process that includes being pre-educated on the Rules of entry, declaration requirements, etc,. and met a background check standard that showed a personal history of adhering to rules and laws in general. She would have gone through a face-to-face interview with the CBP and been fully advised and aware that violating the terms associated with the privilege results in losing Global Entry status as well as incurring appropriate penalties. She volunteered and was signed-off for being considered lower-risk/more trustworthy than an "average, normal passenger" by CBP.

It's because of the pre-education, background check, interview/vetting process that it's far more likely that a Global Entry passenger who makes erroneous assumptions that result in undeclared items being found will be penalized than an "average, normal passenger" doing the same (although they certainly can and many do get fined too). Global Entry passengers are held to a higher standard of understanding the rules and behavior. Part of the penalty, a $500 fine (half of what it could have been), is a punishment holding her responsible for not understanding or ignoring the Entry rules that as a Global Entry passenger she was supposed to understand and never ignore. Ignorance and/or misunderstanding may work as an excuse for an "average, normal" passenger, but not for her because that's the responsibility that goes along with the benefit of Global Entry's expedited, usually-unchecked entry.

Most countries don't even have a Global Entry-like program which, by designating some low-risk passengers as trusted who can be expedited, is designed to reduce the length-of-wait times for not only them but the "average, normal" passengers as well. I believe that most here decrying this woman's penalty aren't actually aware what Global Entry is, what gaining that privilege entails, and that it comes with pre-education with respect to entry rules. Part of her penalty and what she's upset about is nothing more than her being shifted from the "low-risk/trusted" expedited Global Entry process back to the "average/normal passenger" processing queues.

Most here decrying this woman's penalty as an over-reaction by CBP are not Global Entry passengers, and are relating to her situation as if she were an "average, normal" passenger like themselves. In other words, NOT passengers who will be held to the higher Global Entry standard that she was. Your question here is framed from that viewpoint, but the Global Entry application process and pre-education is for the purpose of ensuring that "average/normal" is not the viewpoint and level of understanding of those who've put themselves forth and are granted Global Entry expedited processing. Global Entrys are expected to have no confusion re the rules and what needs to be declared.

Yet, even after demonstrating that she clearly doesn't, she publicly insists "I understand the rules". Furthermore, she's apparently so adamant in the mistaken belief she understands them better than the CBP Agent who caught her that she wants to go before a Judge in court to fight it. She'll fail in court, of course, but her statement reveals that the Global Entry application process, pre-education, and even penalties didn't have the desired effect because she's STILL assessing her own behavior through the "average, normal" passenger's viewpoint. There is a great disparity between she standard she professes to understand and what the CBP requires her to maintain vs what she actually does.

That disparity shouldn't come as a surprise given her warped sense of reality regarding things pertaining to herself as exhibited by her claim that she was "treated like a criminal". I don't know what kind of pampered world she lives in but actual criminals are physically detained, handcuffed, arrested, charged with a crime, and read their Rights, none of which happened to her. Also, when actual criminals appear in the media it's either a mug shot or while being forced to do the perp walk to the Courthouse, Jury, and Judge where the end result might be them being sent to the Big House. This is quite unlike voluntarily going to the Courthouse in order to moan before a Judge about a perceived, great unfairness of a penalty that amounts to a loss of Global Entry privilege resulting in being treated "only" like an average, normal passenger and a fine equal to a few month's worth of hot yoga class. One thing for sure, It doesn't seem to occur to her that she was treated exactly how someone caught taking undeclared items through Customs is treated. Maybe she believes she can waltz through life and when running afoul of rules or regulations due to her own inattention or ignorance, and she is entitled to being issued only warnings because of her belief it must be someone else's fault? "But, but your Honor, Delta gave me the apple!!".

Her appeal to the public through a sympathetic media (mis)casting her as an average, normal, suburban Denver woman coming home from Paris who was ill-treated with heavy-handedness at the border over a "mere apple" is designed to elicit an "Oh, that could have happened to me" reaction by the average, normal person, something she was NOT considered to be by the CBP when it comes to entering the country. As a consequence, this thread is rife with those sympathetic reactions from non-Global Entry posters with average, normal passenger viewpoints (plus the viewpoints of those who are generally ignorant of the existence and details of agricultural importation rules, who don't care about them, are too lazy to learn them, don't believe invasive species can wreck harvests, don't believe there should be punishments or penalties for anything, are hair-triggered against any authority and believe anyone who respects it is a fascist, and my personal favorite, the ever-predictable default mode of some; "this could only happen in America" as long as what happened is sold as being bad).

What those "average, normal" reactions are masking is that this woman is so intent blaming others to excuse her own failure to adhere to the Global Entry-level of responsibility she sought, agreed-to, and was expected by CBP to maintain, she's publicly making statements that reveal her continued "average, normal" outlook (telling the media "Delta giving me the apple is the most important thing to the story". "Delta should have told me it wasn't allowed or not given out apples at all") oblivious to the fact those statements are completely at odds with what Global Entry is all about and who it's for; people who don't need hand-holding and shepherding by outside entities like Delta, and can be trusted to completely understand and adhere to CBP rules. Someone exhibiting such cluelessness by making them in an effort to evade responsibility can't be trusted to do what's essential to make Global Entry work; self-police. She is walking, media-talking proof that no vetting process is perfect, is exactly the type of person low-grade fines are designed for, and why random-checking of Global Entry passengers is still conducted. Someone with the ability to self-police not only seeks an answer to resolve a disagreement between an assumption they've made that seems to be at odds with a rule they know (which, despite her insistence, she obviously doesn't), but even lacking knowledge they also have the ability to recognize when they are making an assumption and, knowing that's not good enough, seek clarification before they act.

It's good she's been weeded-out of the Global Entry program. If CBP found too many people like her they'd simply do away with it.

Delta and other airlines provide an inflight briefing with respect to what the Entry process and Customs rules are. Do they go up and above, singling-out and emphasizing through a PA announcement the fruit aspect just because enroute they've handed out inflight snacks, including fruit? Doubtful, but why should they? They also handed out meat-like substances as well, and psuedo-salads. The Declaration Form on the aircraft or it's duplicate at the Global Entry kiosk one must read, answer, and sign is self-explanatory. It asks if you are bringing fruit, Yes or No.

That was her hottest water. She earned her fine and loss of Global Entry status by answering "No" to the "I am bringing Fruits.." question when she was, in fact, bringing fruit. Despite the fact that as a Global Entry passenger she shouldn't have been ignorant of the rule against importation or made the erroneous assumption she did, neither would cause or explain her answering "No" on her Declaration Form. Even the occasional fruits and vegetables that are allowed to be brought in because those bringing them have gone through the proper importation process and carry the requisite documentation must be declared by answering "Yes" by that person on their Form. The only time one answers "No", is when one actually don't have any. Simple.

Last edited by PukinDog; 28th Apr 2018 at 21:33.
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Old 29th Apr 2018, 01:40
  #139 (permalink)  
 
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Yes, all citizens and especially non-citizens must "follow orders", it is for the national interest. Papers please...
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Old 29th Apr 2018, 06:03
  #140 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by donotdespisethesnake View Post
Yes, all citizens and especially non-citizens must "follow orders", it is for the national interest. Papers please...
I fly in and out of a couple dozen countries per year, 80+ overall, and when showing-up as crew or passenger I can't recall one where the attending agents/guards/security force personnel, soldiers etc. don't expect you follow instructions, orders, and abide by the particular and sometimes peculiar rules and regulations each country deems necessary if you hope to gain entry (including my admittance into my own). Until such time we live in a country-less global Utopia as Imagined by Lennon, when crossing borders and showing up at entry points, "Must follow" is a fact of life if one wants to be admitted. Producing the appropriate and valid papers they deem necessary (Passports, Visas, Declarations, etc) is usually part of that equation.

The closest I've come to it being otherwise was driving from the U.S. into Mexico, where the border guard leaning against the gate just waved vehicles through, looking at nothing. Of course, I didn't interpret his seeming disinterest and discretionary use of a wave-through as him being powerless to stop me to give instructions if or ask for paperwork if he had a mind to before allowing me to proceed.

Funny thing about driving into Mexico, Customs, and making assumptions like the Delta Apple-lady. A Mexican border guard waves you, your friends, and your car into Mexico. Your U.S. driver's license is valid for Mexico, but your U.S. insurance isn't. If you've done your research and purchased the car insurance that's required to be purchased from a Mexican insurance company, Mexican Customs will seize your car if you're caught driving outside a certain short distance from the border unless you've paid to obtain a Vehicle Import Permit. Yet, even with proper IDs, valid Driver's Licenses recognized by Mexico, Mexican car insurance, and a proper Vehicle Import Permit, if you let one of your buddies on the trip with a valid Driver's License drive your car without you inside the car and he's stopped, Mexican Customs will seize your vehicle and it's gone.

If that occurred, one could moan all day about how unfair and stupid that is. After all, the driver caught driving your car was allowed into Mexico at the border and also holds a Driver's license that's recognized by Mexico. Furthermore, the car had Mexican insurance papers and a Mexican Vehicle Import Permit so it could be driven anywhere in Mexico. Moreover, the Customs man at the border just waved everyone with their valid papers and licenses including those for the car. All good. So how can seizure by Customs be the penalty for merely allowing a Legal entry, valid-licensed friend use a Mexico-approved car for a short a beer run?

Well, the penalty is what Mexico decided it would be...your car. Of course, one could take their case to a Mexican court to appeal the penalty using a variation of the Delta Apple-lady Defense, telling the Judge the penalty is unfair because although the rules are written down for anyone who wants to bring a car into Mexico for driving around later to read, the Mexican border guard didn't stop them to point out that particular rule and emphasize that when driving in Mexico the owner of the car must be in the car at all times it's being driven or Mexican Customs will seize and keep it.

"Your Honor, I understand the rules but the border dude just waved us through and didn't say anything, which is the most important thing to me, so "common sense" says letting my friend Jake borrow the car to go buy a 12-pack of Pacifico is no big deal. He was totally sober and a real good driver. He has a license. It was just a short errand. The border dude waved us through making me think everything was okay. If he only would have said something, so it's sorta his fault...but now I'm the one being treated like a criminal!"

Ah, those funny Customs rules that can't be divined through "common sense" can seem like a sneaky, unfair trap to those that depend on it and/or timely spoon-fed info from others instead of using the kind of sense it takes to read and seek answers before it all goes pear-shaped..

Last edited by PukinDog; 29th Apr 2018 at 08:29.
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