TSA VIPR Team Spotted at… Detroit Music Festival??

Pass the message on to the “If you don’t like the TSA, don’t fly!” crowd: the TSA is bent on expanding to all modes of transportation: subways, trains, buses, and even the open road. We’ve already seen them in a Texas bus system, Tennessee highways, Georgia Amtrak station (“accidentally” screening passengers who simply wanted to leave the station!), and Florida Greyhound stations.

You can add to this list the following terrorist-rich environment: Detroit’s Electronic Music Festival (“DEMF” or “Movement”). An electronic music producer myself (in between sessions of suing and embarassing the TSA, and my day job, I find a little time), I attend a large number of music events across the globe each year. So you can imagine my surprise when I was wandering from the festival to my car when I ran into a group of 5 men who looked like police officers, but one of whom was wearing a bulletproof vest with the large letters: TSA. Upon closer inspection, all of the men were DHS employees, and at least 2 were armed law enforcement officers (yes, the TSA has armed law enforcement officers — but don’t confuse these with the guys confiscating your toothpaste in airports, all of which are not actually law enforcement).

Naturally I had to see what was up. I approached them and asked if something was going on — if they were on some kind of joint mission with local law enforcement — and they gave me an ambiguous, “Well, maybe Detroit police are a little short-staffed.” When I followed up by asking them if they were a VIPR team, they perked up a bit, and were as shocked as I was to see them that a member of the public knew what they were up to. It turned out that, as best I could gather, this was just an ordinary patrol for them.

Granted, these men were entirely friendly and seemed to be wandering the path below the elevated train tracks near the festival, rather than stopping and searching anyone. But, the question is: do you want to be conditioned to accept armed TSA “police” roaming about your neighborhood? Do you approve of the TSA stopping people in bus and train stations and demanding to search their bags? Will you actually be surprised when a nude body scanner shows up at your local subway station?

So, “if you don’t like it,” the solution is clear: don’t leave your house. Or, you know, you could make your disapproval of TSA antics known now, before the TSA can expand in this absurd fashion and say, “Well you let us do it in the airports, so why can’t we do it in train stations?” “…at bus stops?” “…as you’re driving down the street?” “…whenever we want to.” If we don’t demand the Fourth Amendment in airports now, can you really, truly believe that I’m just talking hyperbole about what will happen next?

One more note: I’ve never seen a VIPR team in-person before this, and since I sued the TSA a year and a half ago, I’ve been to at least a dozen major cities in the US. Detroit is a pretty abandoned city these days, and it’s not a place I would expect federal resources to be spent on security. Unless, of course, they are profiling the large Muslim community that lives here.

43 thoughts on “TSA VIPR Team Spotted at… Detroit Music Festival??

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  1. I think even Janet Napolitano said something like, “If you don’t like it, don’t fly.”

    Between the fraud that banks/mortgage lenders have committed and Homeland Security invading all aspect of our lives, it is a photo finish to figure out which institution has inflicted more harm on the United States.

  2. ‘unless they are profiling the large Muslim community that lives there.’ But wouldn’t that be Islamophobic? Surely the TSA must be re-educated, like food inspectors and anyone else who demonstrates Islamophobic tendencies?

  3. So where is the “Transportation” mission in TSA patrolling streets? Is walking to a concert now under TSA’s prevue? Unless there is a mode of transportation involved, they are out of their jurisdiction and Federal funds for TSA should not be going to doing Detroit’s policing.

    Next Napolitano will say, if you don’t want to be groped, don’t walk.

    1. Sandra I’m shocked! You must be an Islamophobe! Don’t you know murders, threats, floggings, bombings and church burnings are committed only by a tiny minority of Muslims?

    2. at a techno concert? more like they are showing they target everybody to show they practice political correctness!

  4. The developing Police-state is no longer a subtle thing. Congress couldn’t care less, copping-out that the DHS is out of their jurisdiction. Meanwhile, the thefts, gropings, molestations and irradiations continue. Will it surpise anyone if the Blackwater Group is absorbed into the DHS? That’s exactly what’s going to happen if the Surpreme Court gives DHS legal immunity. Think it can’t happen? Think again. The German Gestapo wasn’t militant until they received immunity from government oversight and legal prosecution.

    1. We don’t have anything like the TSA here in UK. Haven’t flown so don’t know who checks the scanners at airports. They do not have legal immunity and they do not share police duties. But they always could, I suppose. The British are a beaten and pathetic nation just like Americans, opening their arms to the vile, the violent, the treacherous, the self serving, the money grubbing, and surrendering their ancient hard-won freedoms easily, eagerly. However, there is a growing awareness of petty officialdom and the gradual handing over to bureaucrats of the right to punish, to levy fines and penalties. This right exists even for private companies. My question, however, is how would you respond to an official either TSA or some other filthy nerk (negative energy reaction komplex) who happens to live near you? Would you say good morning politely or would you like to say “fuck off, you disgusting piece of shit, we don’t want Nazi feds in this neighbourhood”? How many of your neighbours feel the same?

      1. I think I would be friendly enough to learn their identities so I could expose them to the community. People need to prepare themselves for what is coming to the United States. If the Supreme Court gives the DHS legal immunity, the VIPR teams will become extremely aggresive.

        1. I know the identity of all my neighbours without having had to enquire – just local gossip gives most of the information I need. There are no dirty feral cretins. If there were, I would know their identities. The big problem is not identifying them, it is getting a sane response from the others, the unbelievers, to the federal filth in their midst. A TSA or other fed should feel the hostility and loathing of his neighbours like a hand reaching out to grasp his collar. He should feel their scorn and be unable to meet their eyes. Whenever he goes past someone on their front lawn he should feel their angry gaze upon him. Its because of the friendly spineless acceptance of awfully nice people like you that America is in this terrible predicament. Do not talk of friendship with your enemies as a way of identifying them. If you know they are federal filth, what other information do you require? Do you want to know if they take cream in their coffee or do you want to ask them if they enjoyed feeling up someone’s toddler or granny today? Do please wake yourself up, your country is being yanked from under your polite friendly feet as you offer friendship to those who actively seek to destroy you and your family.

      2. Wow, clearly another malcontent with no life experience. Odds are that you spend the majority of your time playing with yourself in your parent’s basement.

        1. Clearly Robert you’re a fool. You spend a lot of time referencing the basement so you must spend numerous hours there.

        2. You are one of those who sucks up to the filth in your community, that is quite clear. You fear to express your discontent, instead criticizing others who express theirs. You are the kind of ignorant individual who, in your fear and confusion, is handing over your liberty to tyranny. You must be a disgusting fed of some kind.

  5. I am beyond sickened with the DOJ and it’s antics. Congress and the Supreme Court are no better for allowing this to continue. Napolitano is the first that needs to go and then Pistole. It is beyond me why so many people are ready to had over their rights without so much as a question. You are three times more likely to be struck by lightening than you are of being attacked by a terrorist. So many people are brainwashed already that by allowing the DOJ to stop them and search them at any given time is keeping them safe. I implore you to stop being COWARDS and stop letting the DOJ rape you of your rights. Please stand up and say you will no longer accept being treated like a criminal. We need to take a stand, a national march on Washington might wake some of the deadheads in Congress up.

  6. This is the sleppery slope…..walking is a form of transportation so they in there legalize will justify this. Google constitution free zone aclu…Border agents have jurisdiction 100 miles on either side of.the.border. Welcome to 1984.

  7. Generally I don’t read post on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very forced me to take a look at and do so! Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thank you, quite nice post.

  8. Hey Steve,

    Your persuit of an acedemic degree in England clearly left you in want of real life experience. Maybe you just didn’t get the attention you needed as a child. Either way, you’ve never risked your hide for anything, yet represent yourself to be an authority on conter terrorism and American law enforcement.

    Don’t you brits have enough trouble at home without throwing stones at America? Oh that’s right, no one in England considers you worthy of attention…………………

  9. This is no lie–two TSA officials are currently stationed at my local, small town Maine Rite Aid in response to a series of robberies. Why the TSA and not local authorities? I know not.

  10. Well you were obviously on drugs, their shirts said CBP not TSA, and you were a couple hundred yards from an international border.

    1. Yeah, except for this part: “I ran into a group of 5 men who looked like police officers, but one of whom was wearing a bulletproof vest with the large letters: TSA”

      Again, it was a TSA VIPR team. If you’re not familiar with these teams, look them up.

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