Minnesota Man truly believes in FREEEEEEEDOM!


It’s not just for Floridians anymore. We have a Minnesota man going buck wild at the airport.

Telling agents he “did not have to stop” because “it’s a free country,” a 44-year-old Minneapolis man is charged with threatening TSA workers at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. The charges state that he also swung a stanchion line post before throwing it at agents, taking his clothes off and masturbating.

<sniff, sniff> It warms the heart to see a True Patriot exercising his rights. Like any other True Patriot, he also has a domestic assault charge hanging over his head.

If only all those Enlightenment philosophers who made all the noise about liberty could see the end result of their work.

Comments

  1. davidc1 says

    Why oh why doesn’t anything interesting happen when I am waiting in line to be groped by the TSA ?

  2. says

    Well, he was obviously having a mental health crisis of some sort, possibly a psychotic break or strung out on meth. It’s really important to understand that this is not a moral failing and it’s really wrong to mock people with behavioral health disorders. Please don’t do it.

  3. René says

    PZ, I may have to stop reading your blog. Any news that reaches me from God’s Own Country is depressing, crazy, revolting or criminal. (I may have left some descriptions out.)

    Lemme use an all to familiar American four-letter word. Just

    FUCK

  4. KG says

    cervantes@2,
    I’ve a hunch that the sort of behaviour people demonstrate in a mental health crisis tells you quite a lot about the person they are when not in a mental health crisis.

  5. wcaryk says

    “Surveillance video footage showed Towers punching and headbutting TV screens at the airport, taking his clothes off and masturbating. ==> This happened about an hour before the incident at the checkpoint. <==”

    Sounds like security might have been a tad tighter.

  6. beholder says

    What this man did is a social faux pass, I guess, but it’s less offensive than the security theater we all have to go through at a U.S. airport.

    Having the TSA in airports is bad and we should feel bad for allowing it.

  7. Snarki, child of Loki says

    “Surveillance video footage showed Towers punching and headbutting TV screens at the airport,

    Were the TVs all set to FAUX, like is all-too-common?
    Could explain the punching and headbutting.
    Or perhaps the masturbation.

  8. kayden says

    @cervantes, That’s what I was thinking as well. He does not sound like an ideologue who was protesting COVID-19 related safety protocols. Hopefully, he gets the help he needs.

  9. drew says

    Ah, a good propaganda moment. Those “crazies” who are ostensibly upset with the TSA interfering with constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of movement? They’re just angry, violent, masturbating macaques!

    This is as much fodder for the dem base as reporting of black on black crimes is for the rethugs. Both are excuses to erode our civil liberties. Both conceal massively corrupt profit-taking. Both are disgusting on several levels. Are they the same? No. The purpose of the reporting largely seems to be, though.

    Feel free to return to your outrage-fueled dopamine drip now . . .

  10. John Morales says

    drew:

    Those “crazies” who are ostensibly upset with the TSA interfering with constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of movement?

    Clearly, from context, you would count yourself amongst those “crazies”, except that you are not ostensibly upset. Just snarky, right? ;)

    They’re just angry, violent, masturbating macaques!

    Can’t you read? The OP clearly labels the specimen at hand as “Minnesota Man”, not as a macaque. And it is you who inserted the quantifier “just”, though the OP also clearly states “he also has a domestic assault charge hanging over his head”.

    This is as much fodder for the dem base as reporting of black on black crimes is for the rethugs. Both are excuses to erode our civil liberties.

    You imagine “our civil liberties” encompass flaunting laws and regulations?

    Feel free to return to your outrage-fueled dopamine drip now . . .

    … says the triggered troll.

    (There, there!)

  11. KG says

    Having the TSA in airportsFlying is bad and we should feel bad for allowing it. – beholder@7

    FTFY

  12. KG says

    Interesting that two of our resident, contemptuous-of-the-lesser-evil “radicals” value their freedom to fly over combating climate catastrophe.

  13. beholder says

    KG, I pose a challenge to you. List one useful thing the TSA does at an airport. These utterly contemptible fascist wastes of oxygen are only good at voyeurism, groping, making everyone’s lives miserable, and getting paid to do it. It’s probably why they went all in for Trump in the last two elections; when he said “Grab ’em by the pussy”, they recognized it as being part of their job description.

  14. chrislawson says

    cervantes–

    Yes, the masturbation is a bit of an indicator that there is probably a psychiatric crisis behind this. As far as I know even the most ardent libertarians are not actually demanding the right to masturbate in busy public spaces.

    Having said that, there is a strong correlation between cultural norms and the specifics of delusional thinking. When I was a young medical student in the 1980s, a huge number of people with schizophrenia had delusions about alien abductions and implants, largely due to the cultural influence of Spielberg and Strieber and so on. A decade earlier, the delusions were often about the CIA, largely due to the prevalence of paranoid conspiracy thrillers in movies and books (this was the era of Ludlum, Frankenheimer, and Pakula). Right now, paranoid fantasies will be honing in on the talking points on Fox News. Sadly, the paranoia about the CIA was not at all unreasonable, even if the specific beliefs of the mentally ill were delusional, while the current paranoia about the Deep State is entirely devoted (and quite premeditated by right-wing media) to crippling important government programs like health care and social welfare and fairer tax reform.

    So I’m all for it if we can separate mockery of the belief system from mockery of a person with (yet to be confirmed but likely) mental health issues.

  15. chrislawson says

    drew@13–

    The basic point of the constitution is that states can’t tax or discriminate against people from other states. One example: states aren’t allowed to to refuse health care until residents have lived there for 12 months. That’s what freedom of movement means constitutionally. The US Supreme Court has issued many judgements relevant to freedom of movement and not one says that people are allowed to travel however they want or that security measures can be bypassed, and if you were to do even a cursory search of the relevant laws, you would see that the government has the right to restrict travel for many reasons, including being “consistent with national security”. I mean, really, your facile interpretation of freedom of movement would mean that pilots don’t have to listen to air traffic controllers.

    I agree that the TSA is a huge, expensive, public abuse system and should be scrapped immediately. But if it falls foul of the US Constitution, it’s not because of freedom of movement. I find it incredibly annoying to see Americans use the constitution to defend whatever the fuck they want when they clearly know less about their own laws than people from other countries.

  16. KG says

    KG, I pose a challenge to you. List one useful thing the TSA does at an airport. – beholder@18

    Discourages people from flying. Challenge met.

  17. wzrd1 says

    whheydt@10, the problem is that those fuckwits then crash into people who are doing what they’re supposed to be doing – wearing their lap belts to remain safely in their seat.

  18. JustaTech says

    KG @16/17: I’m sure you’re not suggesting that people who live in remote areas (like the entire states of Hawaii and Alaska) should be denied advanced medical care, right? Because for some treatments (for things like cancer, and complicated surgeries) the only choice is to come to the mainland/lower 48, and that’s only really possible by air. (Currently Vancouver, CA is completely cut off from the rest of Canada by road, so if someone from Vancouver wants to go to any other part of Canada they either have to fly or drive through the US.)

    For all that much of air travel is optional (vacation, work meetings that could be virtual) some of it is actually factually life saving (organ transplants, for example). So I’m sure you’re not against that, are you?

  19. chesapeake says

    Chrislawson @20
    “ I agree that the TSA is a huge, expensive, public abuse system and should be scrapped immediately.‘
    How would security be provided.? That’s needed,right?

  20. chrislawson says

    chesapeake@24–

    The way security was provided prior to the TSA (and is still provided in virtually every other country in the world).

  21. KG says

    JustaTech@23,
    Flying should be for emergencies (such as transport for medical treatment) only, other than in battery-operated planes (which can only do short flights, e.g. they are used to link some Scottish islands to the mainland). The vast majority of flights are taken by the global rich (which includes large proportions of the populations of Europe, North America, Japan, etc. and smaller proportions elsewhere) for business or leisure purposes. One long-haul return flight generates more CO2 per person than the average citizen of many countries produces in a year. That doesn’t count the additional damage caused by the high-altitude emission of water vapour.

  22. KG says

    By coincidence, here’s a DailyKos thread making much the same point I did about flying. Of course the scope of individual action is limited and no, I haven’t done everything I could to reduce my own contribution to climate catastrophe, but flying when you don’t absolutely need to really is a big deal. The last time I flew for personal reasons was in 1992. While I was employed I occasionally had to fly (I managed most European trips by train), but haven’t flown at all since retiring in 2012.

  23. says

    There was a time when I was flying off somewhere maybe twice a month. It was stressful and difficult, and TSA was just a small part of it. I am actually enjoying staying at home and doing most of my travel virtually.

    I ‘attended’ two scientific meetings last year via the internet, and although I missed the social aspect, they were actually superior to in-person meetings. You could do them mid-semester without disrupting your teaching. You were spared a lot of expense. There was less red tape (it’s a big deal to apply to my U for leave time, and to get some compensation for an event that would easily cost between $1000 and $2000, sometimes up around $3K for a big meeting). I didn’t have to physically print out a big poster.

    In-person scientific meetings look like they’ll resume this summer, but many people are now asking for an online option, because it was so much easier. I’m one of them. Much as I’d like to hang out with arachnologists in California this summer, I’d rather see us work out better methods for communicating via a communications medium.

    I might still make one flight this summer, to visit family in the Pacific Northwest. Again, I’d rather have an alternative, but rail transport is neglected, falling apart, and more expensive than flying here in the backward nation of the USA.

  24. JustaTech says

    KG@26: OK, then you can go ahead and tell all the people waiting for an organ transplant that they can’t have one because it’s bad for the environment. And all the people waiting for a life-saving CAR-T cancer treatment, they can only have one if they can manage to be driven to the immediate vicinity of the manufacturing plants (sorry everyone outside North America).

    To hell with any scientific or medical research that involves the shipment of live, refrigerated or frozen material. Who needs scientific progress? Who needs vaccines, antivenom, antitoxins, antibodies, clotting factors or insulin?

    Are you just not aware of how the medical supply chain works, or are you that misanthropic/eugenics-inclined?

  25. KG says

    JustaTech@29,
    Don’t be such a fucking numpty. Can’t you read, or do you choose not to, because you want to have your silly little pro-climate-catastrophe snit? I said “emergencies such as transport for medical treatment” (emphasis added), which obviously includes more than transport for medical treatment, but most of the examples you claim I ruled out actually are transport for medical treatment.

  26. KG says

    BTW, JustaTech, are you aware that there are ways of transporting materials other than flying? Ships and trucks, for example, can carry refrigeration equipment (did you know that?), so most medical and scientific supply chains could work perfectly well without the use of planes.

  27. JustaTech says

    Hi KG, sorry, you said emergencies, so I took that to mean “rare”. The flights required to get CAR-T and similar treatments, as well as organs for transplantation, have to happen all day every day. They take advantage of existing passenger air travel rather than flying charters.

    Are you aware that many of these materials are only good for a very limited time frame, even with refrigeration? Some times less than 24 hours? There is no train and no ship that can travel fast enough to deliver those items in time to anyone who lives more than 200 miles from the origination site. Trust me, life would be so much easier if I could just huck my cancer treatment on a container ship and say “whatever see you in six months”.

    Look, I understand that very few people know anything about how medical treatments are moved around the world. But a lot of this stuff is incredibly time and temperature sensitive. It can’t just sit in a refrigerated truck for a week. Everyone would love it if that was possible! But it isn’t, so either we use plane, or everyone who doesn’t live in the city where that stuff is made is SOL.

  28. John Morales says

    JustaTech,

    KG, sorry, you said emergencies, so I took that to mean “rare”.
    […]
    Look, I understand that very few people know anything about how medical treatments are moved around the world.

    What proportion of all air travel do you think is dedicated to medical supplies and treatment?

  29. Rob Grigjanis says

    John @33: Perhaps relevant;

    Dramatic cuts in passenger airline service in the face of the coronavirus pandemic have had an unintended consequence: disrupting the supply chain for the pharmaceutical industry, which relies on room in the bellies of passenger jets to quickly move drugs around the world.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/drug-industry-warns-that-cuts-to-passenger-airline-service-has-put-medical-supplies-at-risk/2020/05/02/d34a7c96-83ff-11ea-ae26-989cfce1c7c7_story.html

  30. John Morales says

    Perhaps, Rob. Though it’s dated May 2020, when air travel was at its least in the USA.

    Dramatic cuts in passenger airline service in the face of the coronavirus pandemic have had an unintended consequence: disrupting the supply chain for the pharmaceutical industry, which relies on room in the bellies of passenger jets to quickly move drugs around the world.

    (my emphasis)

    But despite fears early in the pandemic of widespread drug shortages across the board, they have largely not materialized.

    Huh.

    Isn’t that KG’s point? Instead of piggybacking on passenger flights using airplanes optimised and fitted for passengers and whatever spare room is in the cargo compartment, they could just have dedicated flights. Those seats and fittings and cabin staff etc all add weight.

  31. KG says

    My point is a simple one: most air travel does not justify the greenhouse gas emissions it causes. If air travel was restricted to those cases where it is essential (and of course there’s room at the margins to argue about which cases those are, but the vast majority of business and leisure travel certainly doesn’t count), the supply chains in those cases would work differently. At some point it may be feasible to produce aircraft fuel sustainably – although even then, there’s the problem of dumping water vapour into the stratosphere, as well as the local problems for people living near airports (noise, NOx, PM2.5). It’s not that I want to stop people flying – there are many distant places I’d love to visit and am now never likely to – but air travel is a fast-growing, very hard to decarbonise, and highly inequitable activity (most flights are taken by a small minority of “frequent flyers”) with, moreover, a strong profit-driven lobby defending it.

Leave a Reply