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Why does TSA have to search/inspect soles of the feet?

Why does TSA have to search/inspect soles of the feet?

Old Feb 18, 11, 6:37 am
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Why does TSA have to search/inspect soles of the feet?

There are reports that TSA has to feel or see the soles of passenger's feet. One example here:
[TSO] had me lift up my feet, patted down my soles, and felt the space between each toe.
Another report here:
No real problem there though having to sit down while the soles of my feet are patted down through my thin socks was rather silly.
A video here shows what appears to be TSA commanding a seated passenger to lift up his feet for inspection of the soles.

Again, like the face stroking and the hair manipulation, the foot rub seems unnecessary and intrusive. We already have our shoes off. Anybody who thinks rubbing the feet of a stranger isn't offensive can go down the beach next summer and start doing that -- please make sure to have the telephone number of a good lawyer before hand!

Even if TSA doesn't give you the full Pulp Fiction foot massage, why is there an apparent need to look at the bottom of the feet in a manual search when the Junkatron doesn't even do that?
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Old Feb 18, 11, 6:53 am
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Originally Posted by Cartoon Peril View Post
Even if TSA doesn't give you the full Pulp Fiction foot massage, why is there an apparent need to look at the bottom of the feet in a manual search when the Junkatron doesn't even do that?
They've got the Junkatron and regular gropings to satisfy the voyeurs and gropers/frotteurs.

Don't you think there are probably some foot fetishists in that den of perverts?
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Old Feb 18, 11, 7:19 am
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they are providing a valuable tinea dectetion service.

In these times of fiscal restraint, combining 'security theatre' with public health screening is a sensible use of scarce resources....
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Old Feb 18, 11, 7:36 am
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It's part of Obama's Communist Health Care to protect the World From Verrucas
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Old Feb 18, 11, 9:02 am
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To make sure that we haven't stepped on one of their equals, i.e., dog turd.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 9:05 am
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You can't carry on more than 3.4 ounces of toe jam.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 9:07 am
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Maybe they've got a toe fetish?
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Old Feb 18, 11, 9:12 am
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Originally Posted by Al Coholic View Post
To make sure that we haven't stepped on one of their equals, i.e., dog turd.
Oh please. TSA equal to a dog turd? You seem to have an unusually high opinion of the TSA, particularly for someone on FlyerTalk.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 9:15 am
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Originally Posted by woodg View Post
Oh please. TSA equal to a dog turd? You seem to have an unusually high opinion of the TSA, particularly for someone on FlyerTalk.
Good point. My apologies to dog turds.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 10:31 am
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If you people had throughly read the other thread about palm positions, you would have realize that it's to check for contraband that could be hiddened between the toes!

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Old Feb 18, 11, 11:31 am
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Nothing satisfies you people! People will pay good money for shiatzu and all you do is complain, complain, complain...

I'll bet this bothers you because some of you may have questionable foot hygiene. Time to wash those feet! Good foot hygiene is the first line of defense against terrorism.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 12:44 pm
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Why does TSA have to search/inspect soles of the feet?
Simply put, it is to see if the soles of the shoes have been "altered" in any way to possibly hide something and as someone who does not remove his shoes, I personally have no problem with it (and unfortunately, I had to warn one of the TSO's at SFO to hold his nose as "I stepped in it" the day before-got a good chuckle and a "thank you" as I was only the second person to ever "warn him" [which imho, is just common courtesy]))
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Old Feb 18, 11, 4:42 pm
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Originally Posted by goalie View Post
(and unfortunately, I had to warn one of the TSO's at SFO to hold his nose as "I stepped in it" the day before-got a good chuckle and a "thank you" as I was only the second person to ever "warn him" [which imho, is just common courtesy]))
If I were going to have my shoes and feet inspected by TSA, I'd do a couple things as well just to show my respect and common courtesy for them:

1. I'd find a pile of doggie doo and jump in it, making sure it was slathered onto the soles of both shoes just before going into the airport. (Last thing I'd do at home, if necessary.)

2. I'd make sure to not wash my feet for a couple days ahead of time, wear the same pair of socks for those days, and let TSA enjoy the fumy "present" waiting for them.

It sure is fun to think about the things that one can do to harass and annoy without "interfering" with the screening process!
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Old Feb 18, 11, 5:20 pm
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Originally Posted by clrankin View Post
If I were going to have my shoes and feet inspected by TSA, I'd do a couple things as well just to show my respect and common courtesy for them:

1. I'd find a pile of doggie doo and jump in it, making sure it was slathered onto the soles of both shoes just before going into the airport. (Last thing I'd do at home, if necessary.)

2. I'd make sure to not wash my feet for a couple days ahead of time, wear the same pair of socks for those days, and let TSA enjoy the fumy "present" waiting for them.

It sure is fun to think about the things that one can do to harass and annoy without "interfering" with the screening process!
Fecal matter contamination is a reason you can be refused screening.
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Old Feb 18, 11, 5:30 pm
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Originally Posted by eyecue View Post
Fecal matter contamination is a reason you can be refused screening.
I'm pretty familiar with USG policy issues and decisions, and, I sit on various interagency working groups. Some of these working groups involve DHS and/or TSA personnel. I have to say that I have never been involved in any discussion, nor have I ever seen anything in writing, dealing with personal hygiene of either an airline passenger or a person desiring to enter the U.S..

Farm or other wildlife "debris" on shoes or clothing can cause an agricultural inspector to take notice, but, I have never heard of the criterion of which you obtusely mention.

Please elaborate because this is something I've never run across.

For different reasons, I'm also curious about your use of the phrase "refused screening." Again, I was not aware that there are criteria for which a passenger can be turned away, other than the TSA assertion about the "no-ID and not cooperating with us" thing, but, hygiene?
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