Unfriendly, Suspicious, Arrogant...Welcome to the USA

Discussion in '2006 Archive' started by Ulsterman, Nov 22, 2006.

  1. Ulsterman

    Ulsterman
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    The land of the free has become the home of the rude thanks to the "arrogant" and "unpredictable" immigration officials who police its borders, according to a survey of travellers.

    The nation that once welcomed all with its Statue of Liberty and declaration E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one) is now considered the world's most unfriendly.

    Fopr the rest of the story see . . .

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/11/22/wusa22.xml&DCMP=EMC-new_22112006

    -----------------------------

    Having just holidayed in the USA (went to preach a week in Ohio, and then enjoyed a week's vacation in Florida), here was my experience. Arrived in Detroit expecting to be grilled, expecting very tight security. The security was fine, and the passport control officer was courteous and very friendly. (Our 13 year old son appeared on his records as an escaped felon!! Glad it wasn't me or we might have had an altogether different experience). Immigration officer asked me the reason for my stay, where we were staying, and who with, also how did we know the people. No problems. Actually, I was pleasantly surprised. The last time I was in the States (2002) we had our bags sniffed over by dogs, we stood in long lines and were eyeballed by officials, and received quite an inpersonal, gruff welcome, so this time around I though things had really improved.

    On the way OUT however, security was much tighter, my son was quizzed in an interrogative way, and the officer was rude (reminded me of my departure from Tel Aviv some years ago). The security people (that is the people scanning our bags and searching us) were very friendly. And then at the gate getting on to the aircraft a very haughty airline official, with a very aggressive attitude saw us off.

    That said, I believe the American people are among the friendliest and most welcoming anywhere. People we met seemed genuinely interested in us, although as a Brit it is difficult getting used to tipping anyone who looks at me sideways, the concierge, the taxi driver, the airport official loading our bags etc. etc. Overall though an enjoyable time was had by our family, and I would have no problem returning to the US as a tourist.

    I would be interested in hearing the experiences of those coming our way - how did you find UK customs and immigration?
     
  2. The Galatian

    The Galatian
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    I've been back and forth over the US/Canadian border, and they don't seem noticably ruder, although the procedures are longer now.

    Once, one said "If I look in your trunk, I won't find the body of your mother-in-law, will I?" and laughed. Sean later told me that they use that as a technique. If you laugh, no problem. If you tighten up, it means you have something else to hide.

    Those coming in from Europe and elsewhere probably have a harder time. It's understandable, but unfortunate; we have become a nation of people who fear danger more than we love freedom. Please God, let that be temporary.
     
  3. Timsings

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    My wife and I visited England and Scotland in 2003. We had a wonderful time, and are looking forward to going back. We flew from London to Edinburgh. They pulled my wife for an extra random search, but the people involved couldn't have been more polite. We had a very pleasant conversation while they went through her bag and mine. The only problem was that our flight was delayed three hours due to weather in Portugal. We probably should have taken the train.

    Our worst experience occurred when we landed in Cincinnati on the way home. The customs people at security were rude and intimidating. The ones doing entrance interviews were very nice.

    I thinking about using sedation for the next trip.


    Tim Reynolds
     
  4. El_Guero

    El_Guero
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    WHEW!

    I was not sure what to expect from your post.

    It turned out better than I might have expected.



     
  5. hillclimber1

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    Well these issues, while somewhat disturbing, do not speak to the friendliness of America, but to security issues, directly related to the attacks on 9/11. These are just some of the "victories" the terrorists claim.
     

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