Are CBP Agents Jerky/Racists

Old Feb 27, 2023, 3:47 pm
  #1  
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Are CBP Agents Jerky/Racists

Asking this for Mrs. SeaHawg who does not have GE.

My experience returning to ATL from Frankfurt today was seamless through GE- agent waved me through very quickly. I have told my wife to get it to avoid nonsense like today.

As I went to collect our checked bags post-CBP, my wife texted me very frustrated at the CBP agent who decided to play 21 questions with her travel. She doesn’t have a job and travels on my dime currently, and this fact seemed to have set him off. As the agent was looking through her passport, he noticed she had been to GASP - THREE Muslim countries in six years- along with the 40 or so other stamps from Europe/Africa/C America/Caribbean.

Anyway, he questioned her about her job, my job, Egypt, and Oman, and she finally snapped. She basically said we can afford to travel and we travel a lot, and if he isn’t used to travelers coming through a CBP line, he should be reassigned to another federal agency where he doesn’t have to deal with well-traveled people. She then asked him why he was holding her up excessively since we were trying to hop on an earlier flight home and I was 15 mins ahead of her at baggage reclaim. He let her through, but what an a—hole.

Anyway, I guess CBP agents are allowed to be excessively racist and nosy for no good reason. My question is how nosy are they allowed to be, and will this get her harraSSSSed from now on?
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 4:29 pm
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If it catches some bad guys, so what.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 4:36 pm
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Right? We would all be safer if we locked down.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 4:38 pm
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Allowed to be, and trained to be.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 5:44 pm
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Yes, Global Entry and TSA redress should fix this, when I started int'l travel (in Asia) a few years ago, I got 2 straight SSSS's, enough for me to get that sorted out so I don't run into this situation again (and I haven't, since then, knock on wood) I'm actually surprised that with the amount of stamps you claim your missus had, that she hasn't had GE. I wouldn't cry racist right away. They wouldn't be doing their job if they weren't nosy, and since you weren't there, them being actually racist is just hearsay.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 5:55 pm
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I used to always get hassled by CBP. I figured it was part of their job to see if I would get upset or nervous or give something away under questioning. I don't think its racist, but it is profiling, and that is their job....to profile. I would get harangued, questioned, etc. It was a huge hassle.

I got GE and all that went away. If your wife is traveling overseas a lot, GE is a no brainer. And it comes with PreCheck.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 6:00 pm
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Well, they are looking for travelers smuggling things, or doing bad stuff. Visitors from other countries get it way worse. You know the whole “Border Protection” part of the job.

Maybe your wife will listen to you now.
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Old Feb 27, 2023, 6:05 pm
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I mean, I get it. It can be annoying after a long flight -- especially if you're coming home to your own country. But your reaction (and that of your wife) seems a bit disproportionate.Immigration agents ask questions. That's literally their job.
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 4:49 am
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I get they are generally nosy and come off as having nothing better to do, but I believe her when she says this because she has never complained about them being this intrusive before when she goes through. Him trying to target the three muslim countries (Hardcore ones like Morocco 2017, Egypt 2021, and Oman recently lol) we’ve traveled to since seems a bit Islamophobic.

I don’t know if being a single female traveler equated to “sex worker” or “sympathizer” or whatever in his mind. I’ve gotten testy with them before as well. Especially if they seem to be wasting my time asking dumb questions.

Hopefully she will listen to me and just get GE- was a madhouse in ATL and I was easily 20 mins ahead and retrieved our bags before she was through.
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 6:05 am
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Originally Posted by theplayer
If it catches some bad guys, so what.
You, for one, welcome the fascist overlords....
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 6:11 am
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Originally Posted by bitterproffit
I used to always get hassled by CBP. I figured it was part of their job to see if I would get upset or nervous or give something away under questioning. I don't think its racist, but it is profiling, and that is their job....to profile. I would get harangued, questioned, etc. It was a huge hassle.

I got GE and all that went away. If your wife is traveling overseas a lot, GE is a no brainer. And it comes with PreCheck.
And now its coming back to GE. Flying into IAH last week everyone had to see an agent, and had to answer several questions, where were you, why, where do you work, etc. Its like GE is just paying for a quicker line now.

Originally Posted by ewoo
I mean, I get it. It can be annoying after a long flight -- especially if you're coming home to your own country. But your reaction (and that of your wife) seems a bit disproportionate.Immigration agents ask questions. That's literally their job.
Depends on how they ask it. CBP agents often do have a chip on their shoulder, they take to heart the idea that they are the "only line of defense." But they aren't. I've been far more harassed as an American coming home to the US than in most other countries. Entering the EU? 2-3 quick questions the majority of the time. GE helped for a while, but now even that's changing.
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 6:30 am
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OP, you mentioned that wife does not have a job, sounds to me she has time to go through the GE interview process with no problem. If getting an interview at your local airport is a problem, you can check at other locations. Many have travelled just for GE interviews and then come back, sort of a mini vacation. You can even get the application started on your own.

I can only imagine security process as you go through an airport, with one member with Pre-Check and the other on the regular queue, same when doing an international arrival, as you experienced. One member is on the other side, done with the protocols, while the other is still waiting. It defeats the purpose for you to have GE while your spouse doesn't. The whole idea is to expedite the process, while in the end you end up waiting for your spouse. Might as well stand in line with them as well.

As for the comment regarding the CBP agents, is part of their job to ask questions. Maybe it just happened to be the day for her to be asked. Bottom line, they are doing their job. They have no idea who she is.
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Last edited by arollins; Feb 28, 2023 at 6:44 am
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 7:22 am
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Originally Posted by SeaHawg
Asking this for Mrs. SeaHawg who does not have GE.
Your wife's experience is your fault. You bear all responsibility. You need to fix it.






:-)
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 7:27 am
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She travels a lot so that is great to attempt Global Entry Enrollment on Arrival see: Global Entry Enrollment on Arrival
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Old Feb 28, 2023, 7:34 am
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@seahawk: you have no idea what non-US citizen travellers are get asked. And absolutely no idea what an non-white/muslim traveller with lots of stamps from muslim countries in their passports will get a CBP.
These agents did exactly what they are trained for. Unemployeed, no personal income, lots of travel to different countries - EVERY border agency around the world would be asking her questions. The textbook background for an money mule.
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