Pilot Refuses Full-Body Scan, Says TSA Doesn’t Make Travel Safer

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (CBS/AP) — A Tennessee pilot who says he’s tired of being manhandled by security agents is waiting to see if he will lose his job because he refused a full body scan.

ExpressJet Airlines first officer Michael Roberts was chosen for the X-ray scan Friday at Memphis International Airport. The Houston-based pilot says he also refused a pat-down and went home.

The 35-year-old Roberts told The Commercial Appeal newspaper he wants to go to work and not be “harassed or molested without cause.”

Transportation Security Administration spokesman Jon Allen says a person was turned away after refusing to follow federal security procedures but declined to say if it was Roberts, citing privacy considerations.

Roberts says he has safety concerns, but called TSA a “make-work” program that doesn’t make travel safer.

“I just kind of had to ask myself ‘Where do I stand?’ I’m just not comfortable being physically manhandled by a federal security agent every time I go to work,” he told the Commercial Appeal.

Earlier this week, CBSNewYork reported that full-body scanners have not yet been installed at New York City area airports, despite plans that were in place to have them installed at Newark Liberty International, John F. Kennedy International, and LaGuardia airports by September.

The Transportation Security Administration told The Star-Ledger of Newark the installation is complex and the scanners would arrive “in the coming weeks.”

Passengers who prefer not to be scanned can choose to be patted down and pass through a metal detector.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Levon Putney with Rep. Bill Site Pascrell

TSA spokesman Ann Davis says passengers are no less safe. She says the scanners are designed to be faster and less physically intrusive than metal detectors and pat-downs.

The TSA has installed 259 scanners at 59 airports nationwide.

  • Steve

    The day that I have to go into one of those damn things, I am going to strip completely and say there you go…. nothing to hide here….

  • Globetrotter 1492

    If you think things are bad now, wait until TSA unveils its “Full Body Scan – No Checked or Carry on Anything” Procedure that will be touted as the way to guarantee airline safety on every flight.

    All passengers will be required to check their baggage 24-48 hours before their flight leaves so that it can be scanned and loaded on a “freight only” aircraft along with baggage from other flights going to the same airport. On return flights, they will be allowed to check their luggage when they arrive for their flight and pick it up 24-48 hours after it arrives.

    Passengers will be required to go through the full body scan before boarding a “people only” aircraft . Necessities such as baby bottles, medical equipment, whatever will be available for rent or purchase from the airlines.

    Since neither checked nor carry on luggage will be allowed on “people only” flights, the airlines will convert the unused lower level into a second passenger compartment, thus allowing them to carry more passengers. The additional passenger revenue will enable them to keep the checked bag fees from costing more than the airline ticket itself.

  • tomg

    White people don’t hjack planes you frikin idiots

    • notamuslim210

      Really ever hear of DB Cooper? He was white and he got away with it.

      • mark

        Did he? He jumped out and was never seen again. He could have been worm food a few minutes after he left that plane. Besides, it’s still true, a white person has NEVER hijacked a plane to commit an act of terror. DB Cooper was just using his plane as a getaway car.

  • Jgriff

    Here’s a hint. White people have NEVER hijacked a plane except one moron who jumped out with a parachute 35 years ago. Leave us alone..

  • Real American

    I would rather die in a terrorist attack than lose any freedom, and I would rather swim across the Atlantic than visit any airport.

  • karbok

    Nothing but “Security Theatre”

  • notamuslim210

    To Military Mom I guess you didn’t notice the imposter that tried to get through wearing full military uniform either. Just because the uniform is on doesn’t mean the guy in it is authorized to wear it.

  • nastyness

    do they not realize if the pilot wanted to, he could nose dive the plane at anytime he wanted and no one could do anything to stop him… checking him is a non issue. id like to think that the pilot would care the most about the safety plane being that its his job to be on it every time he goes to work

  • Dutch

    Truth is the Mother of hatred.

  • Dutch

    Incidentally,Racist Blacks who enjoy their power trip are not limited to the TSA. They also work in several of the fast food places in the Memphis Airport. The Airport is forced to hire these people, but when I complained directly to Taco Bell, they took the proper action and shut down their store in the Airport. It is time to start pushing back folks.

    • Dave

      If I see even one black in the kitchen at any fast food restaurant I walk out the door. I don’t want any Jessi Jackson sauce on my food. Blacks are discussing and I avoid them like the plague.

  • http://www.airlinepilotforums.com/cargo/54210-pilot-refuses-full-body-scan.html#post887584 Pilot refuses full body scan - Airline Pilot Central Forums

    […] refuses full body scan Memphis-Pilot refuses full body scan ……DISCUSS…….. __________________ Remembering […]

  • Christine O'Donnels Clam

    Since the TSA began their warrantless searches into the private effects of American citizens, there has only been one terrorist act committed on an airline (Underwear Bomber). I like the feeling that the government is doing something to thwart potential repeats of 9/11.
    As for conspiracies, it is assumed that a large number of highly competent and highly evil individuals are capable of pulling off something like 9/11. As we all know, the government is mostly made up of INCOMPETANT but well meaning individuals. So is 9/11 a government conspiracy? Probably not.
    There’s only two good questions about 9/11 a concerned citizen should ask.
    How was the collapse of WTC Building #7 terrorist related? It looks kind of like a controlled demolition.
    Why is the video surveillance better in my gas station better than the Military Headquarters of the USA? We still have yet to see a good pentagon crash video.
    These questions may or may not open pandora’s box.

    • notamuslim210

      Or maybe you are forgetting the Shoe bomber, or the ambassador with the lighter, or many others we didn’t get?

  • Lucy

    While heading through KY airport this week-end I was selected for a full body scan. It took all of 3-4 minutes. The problem I have is the fact that the people that were selected from my line to go through the full body scan were middle aged white women, a 17 year old caucasian accompanied by his mother, and an elderly caucasian woman(about 85) with her elderly husband. The 2 middle eastern men behind me were not selected and that left me infuriated.

    If the facts show that the middle eastern men between the ages of 25-44 are the potential terrorists why aren’t we screening them? Why are we screening old white women with canes and young boys travelling with their mothers? I’m sick and tired of the ‘politically correct’ rule. Call it profiling, I call it applying common sense. This country has to wake up.

  • Mayhem

    mac thorne

    i do not fly anymore>I am also tired of being molested by TSA Goons. One felt me off (my balls-it hurt)


    Sorry, no TSA agent is squeezing my balls. I’ve never flown through an airport with the scanners (and would refuse if I did) and would promptly remove the agent’s hand from my body if that was done to me.

    Any subsequent attempt at restraining me would (and will) result in someone’s jaw being broken.

  • ChuckYeagerSuperPilot

    I am a pilot for one of these commuter airlines. I should have dropped out of college, saved my flight training money, and gone to work with the TSA (Thousands Standing Around). The really sad thing is that they are paid like they are more important than the pilots, they have less responsibility than the pilots, and they have better job security than the pilots. What has my pilots union done for me lately? Thanks ALPA!

  • acelliott

    What’s up with my longer comment not getting posted? Did I offend someone with my idea?

  • Dutch

    I am a retired Airline Captain who retired in 2007. I have been through the Memphis Airport many times and have witnessed first hand how some Racist Black TSA workers relish the opportunity to jerk around highly trained, highly educated professionals. These same workers can’t read, write, or speak any better than a 7th grader. Incidentally, I haven’t been to an Airport since I retired. I simply refuse to put up with the harassment.

  • bunny

    it’s a complete waste of time to search me (the pilot) for sharp stuff, liquids etc. there are all sorts of dangerous things on the flight deck I could use to bring down an airplane long before the first officer (co-pilot) could do anything about it. walk me through all the nudie-scanners you want, pat me down and up and sideways. even if they make me fly stark naked, I can bring the plane down if desired. I hold the damn yoke for hell’s sake.

    (I have no desire to do anything of the sort mrs. Napalitano if you’re listening, I’m just making a point that you and your blue shirt squad same to be missing)

  • Patricio Vigil

    It appears that most of the fed agents you come in contact with have single digit IQ.s. Why trust them to do anything right?

  • CalinCA

    I agree, TSA is a joke. Had the U.S. Govt spent this much money in Viet Nam, I’d have more of my friends around, and we would have won the war.

    The U.S. Govt can’t even secure our borders, let alone keep aiplanes from being hijacked. It’s all partisan politics. It’s a joke.

  • Mike M

    With proper federal clearance, pilots ARE allowed to carry a gun on board. Do they scan THOSE pilots too or do they just waive their gun at TSA as they bypass the security line? hmmm?

  • YesWeCan

    When Obama is president all of the unconstitutional security theater that violates our civil rights will be repealed! I just know it!

    • james

      YesWeCan–Ron Paul 2012 or deception. Its up to us.

  • Mike M

    Yes! Debra C. My mom is 93 with AD and an artificial hip. Her surgeon gave us an ID card to prove the hip operation to airline security but they don’t pay any attention to it. They strip search her every time and you can always hear her behind the partition getting REALLY angry – “What do you think you doing!” “Nobody has EVER treated me like this before.” “Take your hands off me!” … etc.

    The typical TSA employee must enjoy this stuff as some sort of power trip or something.

  • barb

    Although I do applaud Michael Roberts courage to take a stand let’s not turn this into a bash fest of the TSA worker, but instead focus on the much bigger picture of the negative effects of ionizing radiation on our bodies. These devices send ionizing radiation a few centimeters into the skin over 5-10 seconds. Aside from the fact that this protocol is grossly invasive of personal privacy and an obstruction of individual liberty, the ionizing radiation emitted from the machines threatens to damage chromosomal DNA and human cell proteins which can lead to cancer and a host of other serious health conditions. Recent research is indicating that there is virtually no safe level of ionizing radiation; even very low doses can cause significant harm over time.

    • Robert-Fl

      barb: I am not disagreeing with you, but I think your priorities are askew. The bigger problem is that we have a system of government that forces us to do this, and that people are putting up with it.

    • D Sutherland

      And what does the radiation do to the developing embryo?

      What about women who are only a few weeks pregnant and don’t even know it yet?

      How safe is that? NO ONE KNOWS.

  • Tim

    He didn’t want to get caught with the drugs he was trying to carry on.

  • Mike M

    It could be that the TSA thinks that YOU are so stupid that you actually feeeeel safer knowing pilots were scanned to be certain they weren’t hiding something that could be used as a weapon to … take control of the plane. Or?

  • Brian Byrne

    Are TSA agents scanned when they arrive to work? Police officers & airport security? If they can have thorough background checks which make it unnecessary for them to be scanned, why not the same treatment for airport and airline employees?

    Pax et bonum

  • DT

    Radical Islam is not the threat we need to fear. It’s our own government we need to fear beyond all other threats. Get your head out of the sand.

    • james

      D T – AGREED It seems like a coux is under way. The N.W.O. is comming int o focus.

  • mk

    GET THIS MAN A CIGAR!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • nick

    the pilot isnt carryign a weapon?

    that makes me worry

    oh he can use his hands to PUSH THE PLANE INTO A DIVE
    after taking the copilot out with a fire estingguisher!!

    what a F in joke

  • nono

    TSA = Wannabe Cops

  • nono

    WAY TO GO !!! I guess he doesn’t want his daily dose of cancer causing Radiation.

  • Jimmy

    Spot on!

  • Mumbler

    If they don’t trust the pilot and he needs to be throughly searched, he probably shouldn’t be trusted with flying a plane.

  • Robert in Houston

    It is much worse than that: Please consider the extra time (~1h) passengers (800M/yr) need to arrive early, mostly to wait lest they miss their flight due to long lines. This amounts to ~800 million waking hours. A human lifetime only has 400,000 waking hours. By this measure, the TSA destroys (or at least severely downgrades) 2,000 full lifetimes each year. Well over half the damage al-Qaeda caused on 9/11/2001 .

  • bernie

    We’re from the government……….we’re here to help!

  • TheChairman

    Ed, I assume you were looking in the mirror and drinking the MSM kool-aid while posting your four word remark. Only a fool still believes the ‘official’ line on 9-11.

  • Afterburner

    Damn straight!
    Pure cosmetic security, and I am sick of it!
    Example: I went through the screening with a bag 2 lbs. cherries, can you imagine the destructive power of 2 lbs. of jell high explosives injected into those cherries? Pay the Israelis Gov. to take over our DHS. They know what they are doing.

  • mark edward marchiafava

    Simple solution: quit flying.
    I refuse to fly until my rights are respected.
    Why am I the ONLY one who understands this?

    • Cloak And Dagger

      some of us don’t have that option. I have to fly to Asia on business. Can’t take a bus.

  • otto brosz

    These new machines are NOT SAFE! They emit terahertz frequency waves which hurt cell membranes and damage DNA!


  • Leon

    Good for the pilot for too long now we have been waiving our freedoms goodbye.


    AND BOB …

    HERES A LINE FROM THE “Project for the New American Century”

    basically stating that , to achieve their goals ,

    they require a “ANOTHER PEARL HARBOR”

    THIS from 1999/2000.



    “FALL of the REPUBLIC”

    All on youtube.

    Explain Building 7, I mean, be serious.


    • james


    • Russ

      Building 7?……..your dumb. Ever play with dominos?

      As far as a conspiracy…right hundreds of people had to be involved and they all can keep a secret. Yet one blow job in the hallway off the oval office and the whole world finds out. Don’t 1) believe people can keep secrets and 2) believe in conspiracies.

      • Dave

        Absurd! The idea that it would be impossible for hundreds of people to keep a conspiracy silent is silly. If someone actually knows what happened on 911 and wants to come forward, what should they do? Call CNN? FOX? No, REAL whistleblowers don’t get airtime, they get into “car accidents” or “commit suicide”- that’s how it works. Remember, the ruling class has really only one enemy: a unified, informed public. The collective corporate media has taken care of that, quite handily.

        There are three types of people who do not believe in conspiracies:
        People who don’t know History

      • acelliott

        Beautiful and concise rebuttal to Mr. Conspiracy up there. Amazing how some extremely intelligent people don’t seem to understand basic human nature. They just believe what they want to believe and ignore your basic reality. The only way two people can keep a secret anymore is if one of them is dead!!!!


          ITS NO SECRET.




          NO SECRET……
          ____BUILDING 7_______



          The real “problem” is the zombies, the uninformed, the duped, the deceived, the noids, the conned, the scammed,
          the diverted . branwashed, mushskulls…..THAT PRIDEFULLY, [LAZILY] SAY ….OH THEY LIE, BUT ON THE EVENTS OF SEPT 11, 2001, THEY ARE TELLING THE TRUTH.


          REAL DUMB.

        • notamuslim210

          Excellent post; correct and succinct. It is a pleasure to hear things stated so well.

      • notamuslim210

        My complement was for Russ not the trash posted by G W before I could hit enter.

      • G W

        There are many intellectual conspiracies that are right out in the open and you deny that conspiracies exist? The entirety of human history is a conspiracy of ideas.

        • Russ

          The simplest most logical explanation is usually the correct one. Here we go: A bunch of Radical Muslims hijacked some airplanes (thats the only conspiracy) and flew them into some buildings. One big building ended up falling into another smaller building (Building 7) and knocked it down also….kind of like a domino. Sounds simple doesn’t it?

          You people….really get a life. Now…take the tin foil off your head, go outside and maybe try talking to a girl or something.

          • Kirk Patrick

            Saying that men in caves on the other side of the world got NORAD to stand down is the simplest, most logical explanation? Are you high?

            • notamuslim210

              Kirk Patrick Saying that because the 9/11 attack planners couldn’t possibly be smart enough to hurt civilians because their cave doesn’t have the same computer support that NORAD’s cave has is foolish. Any defense has a flaw if the attacker is allowed enough time to find it. The Japanese took Singapore in world war 2 despite it’s awesome defense against seaborne attack by riding bycicles in through the heavily forested mountainous mainland. The Singapore defense was fantastic but it could not envision a significant force arriving through the dense forest quickley and in sufficient numbers to be a threat because they had not thought of bicycles being ridden in following scout-marked trails that had never existed until the Japanese made them for the attack. How does the idea that the 9 11 attacks may have been planned in an Afghanistan cave change the effectiveness of the plan? It’s like saying that just because you don’t have a multimllion dollar command center you can’t be sneaky. By the way the old NORAD defense bunker in Cheyene Mountain was also in a cave (was it better because it had more computer support?).

              • james


                • notamuslim210

                  to: James – You have watched with the intent to refute others not to gain knowledge. The old saying is true “There are none so blind as those who will not see”. If you are bound and determined to see a US government conspiracy you will not allow the presence of evidence to sway you to the truth you are no better than those who scream the aliens are in area 51 to feed their own wish to see it so. I notice you quote the same source as sliding.. do you guys get a kick back for mentioning them or what?

                  • SLIDINGINTOIT


                    AND NOT WILLING TO RESEARCH……



                    _____-RESEARCH BUILDING 7. SEE “ZERO INVESTIGATION” on youtube.

                    see “NATIONAL SECURITY ALERT”

                    RESEARCH THE FACTS.

                    • notamuslim210

                      to: Sliding – Of course I must be uninformned because I disagree with you. (You seem to have the same caps lock problem as james are you just flipping your login name to post support for yourself? I wonder…

                    • SLIDINGINTOIT

                      you do not agree with me??/
                      i could care less.

                      its facts you are LAMELY TRYING to undermine.

                      AND THAT SIMPLY FAILS.

                      __________RESEARCH , ALL AMERICANS WHO CARE, RESEARCH THE FACTS.


                    • notamuslim210

                      I guess I won’t let you have the last word after all. The facts that you so carefully cherrypick from your conspiracy theory nutjob website infowars have been distrorted so far out of whack as to be unrecognizable to those that made the original statements. Try to read something beyond the one site and perhaps you will see the actual physics say it happened as reported and for the reasons reported. But you won’t believe that because it suites you to rage on about the conspiracy that is your only joy in life. OK now you can tell me how I’m a stooge and uninformed etc. (Man trying to put a comment into the right spot is difficult on this site)

                  • james

                    2 1 0 – You have fell for the big lie . You know how it go,s 9 – 11 NEW WORLD ORDER JOB.

                • notamuslim210

                  to: james – P.S. your caps lock seems to be stuck in ALL CAPS (For most people that equates to screaming when posting on the internet). So why would you be screaming anything here?



            you have a lot to learn.


            start here… http://www.infowars.com

          • Clams Yall

            Where is building 1 and 2 falling on top of building 7?

  • logical

    Why search the pilot? If the pilot wants to take the plane down, he doesn’t need any weapons.

    • acelliott

      Very good comment, Logical.

  • Jon Banner

    The TSA is more of a jobs program, not a security program. When will the public ever say enough, NO MORE? We are fighting terrorists, so why aren’t we profiling for them? It is all a PR game, with the public on the losing end.


    I will now look to fly Express Jet. It sounds like they have the best personnel in the skies.

  • Sensible

    My college grand kids just told me my social security benefits are a burden to society. After this article I guess I’ll use it to justify the cancellation of their prepaid Christmas flights and maybe their tutitions. They’re turning against me just like our government. It sounds so Biblical, but they don’t know what that means. All that security is just nonsense.

    • Brian


    • marvinlzinn

      to Sensible:

      A burden? All your years of hard work pays for whatever they need. THEY are the burden!

  • Bob

    Here’a line from a Muslum poet:

    “We will terrorize you as long as we live with swords, fire, and airplanes…” Abu-Ubaydah AI-Hadrami

    Of course you’re probably too busy looking for the government’s “black helocoptors” to concern yourself with the real world

  • Happy Gay

    The Democrats led by Tom Daschel and the liberal news media slammed TSA down our throats and stupid Bush went along with it. NO MORE DEMOCRATS EVER!!!!!!

  • Deskboy

    One question, How do the Israelis do it? That should be our model. That country is crawling with hateful Muslims.

    • Chris

      Well Passengers probabaly have to show up about three hours before the flight so they can get questioned at one security checkpoint and and then questioned again at another checkpoint and if they dont like your answers they have the ability to take you in a back room and be very invasive. I am all for it!!!

  • OyVay

    These scanners are only in place so as to give passengers a false sense of security. They cannot detect plastic explosives placed in baggage, which is where the real danger lies. In addition, my red-headed 17 year old daughter gets “profiled” while other swarthy men are given a free go-ahead. Ridiculous!



      AND ITS NOW.

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