Two Border Tales

Here are two just-heard stories that deserve a repeat. One first-hand, one second-hand, both from a credible source known personally for decades.

A Canadian-only university professor who has travelled widely (Asia, South America, Africa, Europe) felt disinclined to enter the Bush-era United States, and never did. After Obama, a 2010 flight south of the border. At the destination airport, treated like everyone else on the plane, the Canadian prof got fingerprinted. To round off the indignities, singled out for a full-body scan. No intention ever to enter that land again.

A neighbor of the above reporter, a provincial government employee, crossed the border about five years ago on a day trip, a previously common practice. The US border guard stood by the trunk of the car. When it was opened, the guard accused the driver of striking him with the trunk lid. Four hours of interrogation and harassment followed. Then one guard said to the other, “That should be enough for now.” That Canadian has not crossed the US border since that day.

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3 thoughts on “Two Border Tales

  1. The last time I was in the US, probably about 10 years ago, I was stopped by TSA on the way back out to Europe because I had forgotten some tools in my carryon. It took 10 minutes for a senior officer to come to frisk me and look in the baggage. The senior officer was most correct and the result of the search was that I was allowed to check the offending carryon in as checked baggage. No sweat.

    What really thoroughly pissed me off though was that the senior officer was accompanied by a junior officer, a woman probably in her early 20’s. During the inspection, this woman floated around, danced and wiggled her sizeable behind in my direction, while chanting some sort of rap lyrics to the effect of something like “you’re going down… you’re going to get it”. I was so flabbergasted and could not believe what was happening, but I didn’t say anything, I just gave the senior officer the “thousand-yard stare”. I think he got the message.

    I have never again set foot in the US.

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