So you know all these weird Orwellian messages at airports and so forth exhorting people to report suspicious behavior? Does anyone ever actually report anything? What to they report? Future of Journalism Conor Clarke takes a look for Guardian America and reveals:
Of the more than 100 communications reviewed, a large plurality consists of citizens who, like the woman from Islip, arrive at their destinations and feel guilty about a security transgression. Few mention other security threats; when they do, they are largely reports on the ethnicity of fellow travellers.[...]
A traveller passing through Cleveland airport on September 15 reported seeing "two Middle Eastern men" who were "possibly trying to look too casual". "Being aware of racial profiling, I hesitated to do anything, so I watched them," he explains. "I have heard on the news to report suspicious behaviour and they didn't act like people normally do at airports. My first thought was possibly they were doing a test run."
Possibly trying to look too casual? What a world.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.