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Oceanside man challenges airport's full-body scan [Updated]

A recording made by an Oceanside man who refused to undergo a full-body scan at San Diego International Airport over the weekend has gone viral as Internet viewers ferociously debate whether airport security measures have gone too far.

John Charles Tyner, 31, said he wasn't trying to pick a fight when he refused an X-ray scan of his body Saturday, but he was ready to defend his rights, according to his blog, if they made him do it. He is opposed on principle to the X-ray machines because it would show an image of his naked body, said Tyner, who blogs as "Johnny Edge."

[Updated at 9:33 a.m.: At one point, as the airport screener explained that the patdown would include brushing his groin, Tyner replied, "You touch my junk and I'm going to have you arrested."

He also refused to be patted down by a TSA agent, Tyner says on a blog post recounting the details of his confrontation with airport security. Tyner recorded most of the face-off on his camera phone, and the images and audio have gone viral on the Internet.

Tyner said he wanted to draw attention to an erosion in liberties and "senseless" efforts by the government to detect terrorists before they board a  plane.

"Every attempt to blow up a plane since 9/11 has been stopped by passengers after the government failed to provide protection for them.... All I did was draw attention to this," he wrote.

Tyner said he would have gone through a metal detector but that airport security did not give him that option. Instead, they refused to allow him to board his plane and he had his ticket refunded.

As he was preparing to leave the airport, another unidentified security official told him he could be sued civilly and fined $10,000 if he exited without undergoing a search, Tyner said on his blog.

Tyner refused and left the airport.


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Comments () | Archives (291)

you can thank GW Bush for this pet project aka-- Homeland Security...
oh and guess what: The FBI and CIA are not part of the Department!

thx GW !

for the gift that keeps giving .... code pink anyone?

Americans need to realize that the Bill of Rights went out the window on 9/11. We no longer have the right to travel freely without government supervision. The Government can do whatever they want to us and we are powerless to prevent it.

What a bunch of whining, complaining, complacent people we've become. We complain that the Fed Gov't didn't do enough to prevent 9/11 and then we whine about them taking steps to prevent a repeat. Too many people can't tell the difference between rights and privileges. They are not one-in-the-same. Perhaps those of you who complain should spend some time abroad in a country where there are no rights...nor privileges for that matter. Feel fortunate you have the right to complain, but note that your privileges may be inconvenienced from time to time. Freedom has a price tag; we must all bear that burden to one degree or another. Some people put their lives on the line on a daily basis; the least we can do is put up with some inconveniences from time to time.

The terrorists have won. They have bankrupted this country. They do some effort that costs just a few thousand dollars, and the US responds with an effort that costs tens of millions of dollars. Over and over again this scenario occurs. Further, the excessive delays we now face when travelling hinder commerce. Did everyone forget that "the business of America is business".

We have let the terrorists destroy a more casual way of life i.e our former freedom, where we moved faster instead of waiting in security lines.

So many people have some over-excessive need to feel "safe", so that they will allow their civil liberties (freedoms) to be steadily and materially eroded. The world will never be "safe" and if you think you are "safe" then you are deluded.

Most of us will never meet a terrorist. The biggest "danger" to us are nazi government persons who erode our rights and justify it by deluding us that we need it to be "safe". You can't even take a bottle of water with you anymore. It's bloody ridiculous. There is more danger in driving to the airport on the roads than being a victim of terrorism in the air.

Everything is a trade-off. We need to draw the line somewhere. John Tyner is a great American who is showing the spirit that made this country great. I for one do not like seeing this country steadily decline, in so many ways, to become a shadow of what it once was.

This guy is an attention whore. We should stop giving him what he doesn't deserve. Let him take a train or bus next time. Flying is a convenience and a privilege, not a constitutionally-mandated right.

When things go wrong at 35,000 feet, the results are often fatal, so for those citing automobile statistics, that's an apples and oranges comparison.

do you really think you are safer on a flight because everyone is patted down and x-rayed? the terrorist have already figured out a way around this. all this does is give us a false sense of security while the terrorists are laughing there a$$es of at us. Do you know how much cargo is carried on the same planes we travel on and none of it is ever inspected. wake up people!

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.

Get over yourself Pal. Bit of a drama queen, heh?

Newsflash: Flying is not a right. You don't like it? Fine. Don't fly.

That's one less infrequent flying, discount fare paying, sweatpant wearing, whiney, clueless novice I have to deal with when I'm flying.

Trust me, the poor TSA just above min wage slob doing it is probably as revolted and disgusted as you could ever be; just look at the folks flying these days.

Aside: Best line of day (from UK): If these images [shown on many Web sites from scanners depicting metallic-looking forms] had been from real US operations, the figures would have been three times as wide. LOL.

I, for one, welcome anything that adds to my assurance I'll depart and arrive safely.

Interesting the same folks complaining when there's an incident, froth hysterically that every additional layer of security represents the unspeakable repression of a totalitarian regime.

Yes, I understand the first thing the N*zi's did in the 1930's was start patting folks down.

Grow up.

If you do not want to follow the rules, you do not have to fly. Very simple. You have the right to not be X-rayed, and you have the right now to allow them to pat you down. But you do not have the right to fly.

If you do not want to go through the security then drive there. Take a boat. A train. heck take a horse!

we need two seperate lines at all airports terminals, one for the idiots that would prefer not to be searched along with their luggage, and the one for the people that would rather not be blown into an ocean because of the idiots in the other line.

Paul - nice comment.
Flying is a privilege, not a right. I don't agree with every ridiculous traffic law that we have either, but I obey them in order to keep my privilege to drive.
Coming from someone who flies a ton of miles every year (and spends a ton of money to do it): Don't fly, I don't want you on my plane.

Good role model. These X-ray scans are unnecessary.

Take the bus ding-dong; drive; or charter a flight; no screening there.

"Every attempt to blow up a plane since 9/11 has been stopped by passengers after the government failed to provide protection for them."

Obviously this blowhard forgot about the toner cartridge explosives found in the UK last month and removed not by passengers but by the authorities. It confounds me that he thinks he is fully aware of each and every incident, publicized or not, to make such a sweeping, and factually incorrect, statement.

The radiation amount one is subject to is 300 times the amount of a dental xray. I think in a few years your going to find that people who travel will develop forms of cancer related to these machines. When the government says "hey it's safe to be xray'd" you better think twice.

I dont fly and Im not a facebook user, life is good :)

That's a bunch of B.S. If the guy didn't want to be scanned they should have the normal metal detector equipment there as an option.
They authorities should not have threatened him about being sued if he left w/o being scanned, that was his decision to not board and leave the airport.

Honestly, what difference does being seen naked or having a pat down make when it's the difference between the safety of 100s of people and your phobias?

Neither submitting to a cancer causing x-ray strip search, or to sexual battery under color of law, can be tolerated as preconditions to travel. The government's job is to deal with terrorists long before they act - if the government can't do this without eliminating our last vestages of civil rights, the government security precautions are not only intolerable but completely worthless.

Where government officials are not only willing to eliminate personal liberty, but seemingly relish doing so, we need (at the bare minimum) new officials setting sane policies.

well this is some white guy do u guys have any idea how much a guy who is muslim or looks muslim has to go through at the air port

The touching of or brushing against sexual origins or the threatening of such is the definition that the military uses for sexual harassment, but the government will one day require the same test when you go to a baseball game (i don't want my kids touched) when will it stop when they do weekly pat downs at your job or maybe your house, as someone commented its for our safety!!!
Hope you love getting touched or nude shots of you getting posted online because those images are saved and about once a year a military base gets hacked and has a large amount of data stolen so you think they can keep your image safe??

The right to personal privacy is not absolute. When you CHOOSE to travel by air, you necessarily AGREE to give up certain rights you might otherwise enjoy. Modern society has been come so couched in creature comforts and an entitlement ethos, that the average person might think that there is NO alternative to air travel much of the time. Those who traveled West in covered wagons and risked their lives to reach California in the 1800s would disagree. Those pioneers might say this: "If you are too good for this form of travel, consider using an automobile or ship."

Likewise, you are given a CHOICE of a body scan or pat-down. If you don't like the idea of either, you can CHOOSE not to travel.

This is a simple case of cognitive dissonance: simultaneous belief in two conflicting ideas. On the one hand, presumably, this gentleman feels he has the right to enjoy a nice, safe airline flight. On the other, he feels his rights to privacy are for him to define in a way that suits his own sensibilities under any and all circumstances.

In a perfect world, we would not need full-body scans. Since we do not live in a perfect world, individuals are required to choose either option A or B. Those who want BOTH A and B are going to have to get used to the idea that if they refuse to decide, the decision will be made for them, and, if they continue to raise a stink and create a logjam, they might very well find their names on the no-fly list.

Life's a bee itch, sometimes. Nobody enjoys going through security. Try to think of this as a test of your emotional maturity. TSA agents aren't trying to make you miserable; they're trying to make your flight as safe as possible, and for this we should be grateful, not resentful.

This guy is a moron, another person wasting time and money to try and prove his rights. They make all this noise until something DOES happen, and then they blame the Government for not 'protecting' This guy should be put on a non-screened plane out of the US, and not be allowed re-entry. Go hug a tree hippie.

well this is just an average american imagine if this guy was a muslime or even looked muslim. he would consitanly have been harrased and all through his voayage had he continued

They'll touch my junk for free! All this time I've been paying people at the airport $15 for 5 minutes of junk-touching. Now I find out it's a free service!

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