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Discussion Starter #1
I'm a little peeved. I went downtown to get my passport renewed today. I miscalculated the distance to the office, and parked about 3 blocks away. With my appointment 5 minutes away, I found myself running through steamy downtown miami to make it on time.

Well, I got to the lobby at noon on the dot. Just in time! Or not exactly. They ejected me from the lobby because my cellphone has a freakin camera on it! WTF! They were like "oh, just put it in your car!" Goddamnit, my car is 3 blocks away! I'm gonna miss my appointment. I became desperate, because my brother's wedding is in Peru in less than 2 weeks, and I can't afford to miss it!

So I started asking security people around the building if they would hold my phone for a few minutes, while I registered. Some cops asked what I was up to. I explained the situation to them. They weren't happy about it. They told me I had to dispose of the phone myself, because this is a federally protected building. Or whatever. I made a comment. Something along the lines of "Man, that's f*cking bullsh*t!"

Mistake!!!! They proceeded to take my information, saying they had to do it to report that they had "made contact" with me. I've never heard of this. Am I going on some "maybe terrorist" list now? LOL. Or am I just gonna get harassed by Miami cops every time I get pulled over from now on? What is this list they put me on, and how do I get off it?
 

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Am I going on some "maybe terrorist" list now? [/B]



I thought you were already on it!:D
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Re: Re: They "Made Contact" with Me Today

ivan1 said:
I thought you were already on it!:D
LOL! :D But seriously, though... anyone know what they take the info for? Am I flagged as a dissident, now, or what?
 

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don't know in all seriousness...maybe try contacting the ACLU???
 

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transio said:
Mistake!!!! They proceeded to take my information, saying they had to do it to report that they had "made contact" with me.


Am I going on some "maybe terrorist" list now? LOL. Or am I just gonna get harassed by Miami cops every time I get pulled over from now on? What is this list they put me on, and how do I get off it?


Well Steve, This idea could help, though it's probably too late since you already are on some official radar screen, to change your elisetalk characterization from "troublemaker" to -- oh, I don't know -- try "choirboy." :rolleyes:

If nothing else, your new disguise might work in your favor is other more mysterious ways. :D
 

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If he's not on it, he damn well ought to be.;)

My guess is the information they took got trashed five minutes after you left, just probably wanted to scare you. They wouldn't want to deal with the massive beauracracy of actually reporting something so trivial.

Actually had the FBI come to my home to interview me several years ago because of the places I visited overseas and also writing a letter to the Soviet embassy. Two female FBI agents drove all the way down from atl. to interview.

FYI, under the freedom of information act you can petition the govt. disclose what agencies have files on you. (they may not actually tell you what they've got, for "national security reasons")

Chris
 

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How did they even know your cellphone had a camera and what business is is of theirs? Do they make you go thru a metal detector to get a passport. I thought it was bad here since Motor Vechicles is in the same building as the courthouse. They waste money by having cops check everybody going into the building even if they arent going to court. I asked why I had to be checked when I was just going to renew my license and they said because someone sneak around and could go into the courtroom.

I told them they shouldnt have them in the same buildings- Besides if I wanted to knock off somebody going into a courthouse, I would hang out in the parking lot and shoot them as they were driving into or walking across the parking lot or as they were going in the front door-I didnt mention this too them since then I knew that they would get pissed and take my name down.

Steve, couldnt you just refuse to give them your information or did they threaten to throw you out of the building. I bet they didnt even have any signs up in the building saying no cameras were allowed- Or at least non in English!
 

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Re: Re: They "Made Contact" with Me Today

ivan1 said:
I thought you were already on it!:D
I thought the same thing...
 

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Discussion Starter #9
xxxotic said:
How did they even know your cellphone had a camera and what business is is of theirs? Do they make you go thru a metal detector to get a passport.
They made us empty our pockets, and yes, we had to go through a metal detector. I swear, this country is becoming less and less "American" every year! Here's another anecdote for you:

I was in Pennsylvania a couple weeks ago for a friend's wedding, and I decided to stop by my school U. of Penn. with my girlfriend and best friend and his wife, because it was on our way back to the airport, and we had a couple hours to kill. Well, we went by the Quadrangle (the best party dorm in the world by far!) and wouldn't you know they had a freakin security gate on the main entrance, and all the other entrances were sealed off!!! They wouldn't let me through because of "Security Policy". We got a nice view of the courtyard, but that's about it.

Pathetic! A guy can't even see his old stomping grounds without security clearance in this country!
 

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anyone know what they take the info for? Am I flagged as a dissident, now, or what?
Yes, most likely. But I doubt this will have any real impact on your daily life. Pretty amazing what the feds keep files on.

I know a doc who was asked to be a 'standby' surgeon for a local presidential visit (that is, to be available in case of an injury/attack). He was stunned at the level of very personal information that they (secret service?) had available. He thought they must have interviewed old friends, etc. This was long before 9/11, so I'm sure the level of info management is far more comprehensive now.

Your case is obviously very different, but nonetheless, I'll wager you're now on file
 

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I can (almost) understand them not wanting cameraphones in their buildings, but if that's the case, they really should provide a place for you to store your phone while you do business in there.

My guess is 'making contact' with you results in a note added to your record regarding a minor incident in a federal building. They'd cross reference that against other 'contacts' to look for a pattern or trend.
 

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There are two reasons why the authorities are suspicious of cellular phones and rightly so.

1) Cell phones have either been used as weapons (yes there is a gun that looks like a cell phone available in Europe) or used to trigger explosions as in the train bombing in Spain.

2) Cell phones with cameras could take/send pictures from areas considered to be secure to provide information on the security procedures, equipment, people, etc.

Many businesses are now banning cell phones with cameras because they can be used for spying on what the company is doing internally. While I don't condone a police state, neither do I want to worry about people with phones snapping pictures of me for reasons unknown. (At least ASK for the autograph people!) ;)

In your situation I would have suggested either:

A) Give yourself more time to make your appointment

or

B) Toss the phone in a large trash bin, go to your meeting, then come back and clean out the bin all over the floor to retrieve your phone, thus leaving the trash laying around. :)

C) Offer to take the battery out and leave that with a guard, although they might think it is a brick of C2 or something...
 

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B would be entertaining.

As for the college dorms, SLU was that way when I went there. You had to show a student ID to get in, or have a resident come down and check you in. The resident's student ID and the vistor's ID were filed away together until the vistor left the building. But then again, campus was in a not-so-nice neighborhood of St. Louis.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Later Apex said:
A) Give yourself more time to make your appointment
The passport agency turns you away if you come more than 15 minutes early. I got there 5 minutes ahead of time, thinking I would be ok.

B) Toss the phone in a large trash bin, go to your meeting, then come back and clean out the bin all over the floor to retrieve your phone, thus leaving the trash laying around. :)
I actually started looking in the bushes around the building to hide my phone. That was the point at which the cops pulled me aside, LOL! I forgot that part! I can imagine how suspicious I looked trying to hide an electronic device in front of a Federal building! :D

C) Offer to take the battery out and leave that with a guard, although they might think it is a brick of C2 or something...
I had considered this, and I had considered the consequence. They weren't going to take the phone, you can pretty much guarantee they wouldn't take the battery. Besides, a guy audibly announced "All camera phones will be rejected from the building. NO EXCEPTIONS!" after they spotted mine.
 

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transio said:
The passport agency turns you away if you come more than 15 minutes early. I got there 5 minutes ahead of time, thinking I would be ok.

I actually started looking in the bushes around the building to hide my phone. That was the point at which the cops pulled me aside, LOL! I forgot that part! I can imagine how suspicious I looked trying to hide an electronic device in front of a Federal building! :D

I had considered this, and I had considered the consequence. They weren't going to take the phone, you can pretty much guarantee they wouldn't take the battery. Besides, a guy audibly announced "All camera phones will be rejected from the building. NO EXCEPTIONS!" after they spotted mine.
That's the point at which you shout:

"IT ISN'T A CAMERA PHONE YOU IDIOT IT'S A BOMB!!!" And run like hell to the office you are trying to get to... ;)
 

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18 months ago, waiting to get on a flight from Orange County airport going back to Kansas City - with my wife and 4 month old daughter Hailey...

I removed my shoes, belt, all metal, etc., etc... and put in all in the bin before going through the metal detector. I had my daughter in my arms - had to fold up the stroller and pass it through separately.

Anyway my daughter and I passed through the detector without beeping. My wife in the meantime was behind us and got the stroller and carryon and stuff - and both Hailey and me get pulled over for a random search. They did a full body pat down on me while Hailey was in my arms and then they said that they would have to STRIP SEARCH MY BABY.

I lost it.

First of all there was no beep going through the machine. Second of all I'm a new dad and I'm CARRYING MY BABY. Third - there was a big greasy looking burly security guard that was coming over to take her clothes off, including her diaper and perform the search. I said whoa, no f^$king way! I stopped then and there and offered to help since Hailey's now screaming her little lungs out, scared shitless. They weren't going to let me or my wife help. So I requested a woman guard come over to do it from another station. They started copping attitude and stuff. It took well over 5 minutes of Hailey screaming, wailing and all sorts of completely unacceptable behaviour. I made sure it shut down the entire freakin' line. It was complete and utter ego trip bullcrap.

I took ALL the security people's names and badge numbers down.

Once we passed through security I announced in a VERY loud voice while leaving that I was "never going to fly American Airlines", "their superiors were going to hear about this", "Welcome to communist America" and all sorts of other things that I don't think I've ever said before. I was completely livid. I was on the virge of losing it. Nobody does that to my family. My wife finally calmed me down and we went home. Several people on the plane sitting next to us commented on the treatment and gave us their names for references.

The day after I got back I wrote a letter to the Orange County airport, telling the entire story. I received a response about a month later saying that the incident was under investigation. I received another letter 3 months after that saying that 3 guards were being reprimanded for their actions - and a sincere apology.

I haven't been on a plane since. Screw them. I'll take the Elise.
 

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Again, I repeat the proper course of action is to grab your baby in your arms and scream:

IT ISN'T A BABY, IT'S A BOMB!

And then run on board the plane.

:)

Can't wait until I have to take my little one to the airport... I'll make sure his diaper has a little suprise waiting for any would-be inspector! ;)
 

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transio said:

I actually started looking in the bushes around the building to hide my phone. That was the point at which the cops pulled me aside, LOL! I forgot that part! I can imagine how suspicious I looked trying to hide an electronic device in front of a Federal building! :D
Doh!
 

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i am glad you told them its b.s. cause it is:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: sounds like a bunch of paranoid mindless dip$%^&s. and since your on the list does that mean they are going to read this??? and if they do does that mean im now on the list. IF SO i would like to give them a big california howdy. (just my rage against the machine)
 
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