This story is infuriating:
Did you hear about the Camden cop whose disabled son wasn’t allowed to pass through airport security unless he took off his leg braces?
Unfortunately, it’s no joke. This happened to Bob Thomas, a 53-year-old officer in Camden’s emergency crime suppression team, who was flying to Orlando in March with his wife, Leona, and their son, Ryan.
Ryan was taking his first flight, to Walt Disney World, for his fourth birthday.
The boy is developmentally delayed, one of the effects of being born 16 weeks prematurely. His ankles are malformed and his legs have low muscle tone. In March he was just starting to walk.
Mid-morning on March 19, his parents wheeled his stroller to the TSA security point, a couple of hours before their Southwest Airlines flight was to depart.
The boy’s father broke down the stroller and put it on the conveyor belt as Leona Thomas walked Ryan through the metal detector.
The alarm went off.
The screener told them to take off the boy’s braces.
The Thomases were dumbfounded. “I told them he can’t walk without them on his own,” Bob Thomas said.
“He said, ‘He’ll need to take them off.’ ”
Ryan’s mother offered to walk him through the detector after they removed the braces, which are custom-made of metal and hardened plastic.
No, the screener replied. The boy had to walk on his own.
Leona Thomas said she was calm. Bob Thomas said he was starting to burn.
They complied, and Leona went first, followed by Ryan, followed by Bob, so the boy wouldn’t be hurt if he fell. Ryan made it through.
By then, Bob Thomas was furious. He demanded to see a supervisor. The supervisor asked what was wrong.
“I told him, ‘This is overkill. He’s 4 years old. I don’t think he’s a terrorist.’ “
Sunday a TSA agent called into the show, a BDO or Behavioral Detection Officer, whose job is to profile people determining odd behavior while in the airport. He explained his frustration at how he and other agents are prohibited from stating sex or ethnicity in their descriptions due to political correctness fears.
So basically a disabled four-year-old boy was humiliated in the airport and forced to walk through security without his leg braces when he clearly couldn’t walk without them, just so airport security could say that they apply to all equally. TSA said that the boy should have been taking to a private screening area but apparently not all the agents were apprised of that tidbit.
We are committing suicide with political correctness.