Another day, another disgusting abuse of our civil rights. Today, passengers on a domestic Delta flight from San Francisco to New York were forced to show their "papers" to Customs and Border Protection agents before disembarking at JFK.
Just a reminder - San Francisco and New York are both American cities. Everyone who boarded at San Francisco showed ID. So unless someone suctioned to the exterior of the plane a la Jason Bourne and entered the interior without reducing cabin pressure and alerting the pilot of airline staff, chances are the exact same people that boarded the flight landed as well.
As Rolling Stone reports, CBP made a little boo boo...they are not legally authorized to investigate anyone inside the US. Their authority is limited to international arrivals only.
When contacted by Rolling Stone reporter Tim Dickinson about that fine point, a CBP spokesman said that what they did is "nothing new" and there is "no new policy." Hmmm...did their role expand to past "borders"?
Passengers were very distressed with many posting alarming tweets showing exactly what was going on. One passenger, Anne Garrett, stating "We were told we couldn't disembark without showing our 'documents.'"
Rolling Stone was told by another passenger, Matt O'Rourke, that a Delta flight attendant told passengers, "You'll need to show your papers to agents waiting outside the door. She was weirded out by it." he says.
A further statement to Rolling Stone provided more detail. Their excuse for violating the rights of hundreds of citizens is that they had been *asked* "to assist in locating an individual possibly aboard Delta flight 1583 who had been ordered removed by an immigration judge."
Guess what? That person wasn't on the flight. I guess if they had checked the flight manifesto to review passengers they would have been able to determine who boarded the flight, right?
So could the passengers have declined the request? Apparently not. The CBP told Rolling Stone that "It is always best to cooperate with law enforcement, so as to expedite your exiting the airport in a timely manner."
Oh, and the photo above...is of the SS asking for Jews to show their papers. In Nazi Germany.