And because we take pictures, something like 9/11 might happen again?
It sounds that we (spotters/photographers) are at fault. That we did something wrong.
They had security problems inside of the terminal, not on the top of parking garage.
I don't think that you remember Flight 77 that departed from IAD
Guess what, they also had security problems inside of the terminal.
was out of our boundry only for about 2-3 months after 9/11, after that we just got frequent visits from the Police. They checked IDs and were on their way. Only twice I was ordered to leave (those two times I have meantioned above), but after those incidents we spoke to Washington Post reporter, who served as a communication center between Washington Baltimore Spotters Group and Airport Authority.
We've got what we wanted. No harassment from the police. Of course, they will come to us and check IDs but non of them will kick us out from the LEGAL and PUBLIC places that we take pictures from.
Here is part of the email I have sent to our group when I was approached by cops at DCA
on Januray 17, 2004 - That day was code Orange.:
"I had little encounter with the cops at DCA
last Saturday. I was
taking pictures at the usual location for over an hour (between AA
gates) when I was approached by male and female cops. They
were from WMAA
(not a TSA
people). Here is how the conversation went:
Police: "Sir, what are you doing?"
Me: "Nothing, just taking pictures of the airplanes"
Police: "Sir, can I see your ID
Police: "Sir, I will have to ask you to leave the airport boundry.
You are engaging in ILLEGAL activity and soliciting on the airport
Me: "I'm sorry Sir but I am not doing anything illegal and I'm not
soliciting. I am member of Washington Baltimore Spotters Group and we
have a deal with Tarra Hamilton (Spokeperson for IAD
). She said that as long as we stay in the public places we can continue with our hobby.
Police: "Sir, please stand by for me"
Then he and his partner engaged in the conversation with somebody on
5 minutes later -
Police: " Sir, I just spoke with my supperior and its ok if you stay
here and continue to take pictures. But next time please have any
proof that you can take pictures at this airport"
Me: "Do you want me to carry around Washington Post?"
Police: "Yes Sir, enjoy your hobby, have a nice day"
I wasn't rude to them or anything like that, but I stood my grounds because I was not doing anything illegal.
Because of this topic, last night I had bad dream that police at DCA
confiscated my camera.
It just makes me angry that all problems in the USA goverment are blamed on 9/11.
Taking photographic gear from people and chasing people from public places will make us win that WAR ON
Happy people in happy country......