Free Speech Ends at the TSA Checkpoint

By | September 28, 2006

In addition to issues of liquid and gel bans, free speech apparently ends at the security checkpoint. As Upgradetravel reports, an individual seeking to make a statement wrote an inflammatory statement, “Kip Hawley is an idiot” on his clear plastic ziploc bag that he placed his toiletries in.

The statement led to questioning by the police and the TSA. We tend to agree with Upgradetravel that this, as well as t-shirts in Arabic and other similar situations are not security breaches. They are provocative, but not equivalent to dangerous activity, or even inappropriate possessions(ie knives and such). The TSA and the police have no legal right to detain anyone for such things. The airline, conversely, has more rights to restrict behavior they disapprove of…and say so in their contract of carriage.