Sorry America, But We Ain't Safe: A Review from the NBA Finals Road

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Please don't take this as a complaint. More of an -- as I do from time to time, and always -- observation.

I love my job(s). Getting paid to attend sporting events is all I ever wanted to do since the day I realized I'd grow up to be too short and too unathletic to play for a living.

And if and when the Cowboys go to a Super Bowl I'll gleefully skip through every hoop and hurdle and security line. That being said, I was a little alarmed by the security surrounding the NBA Finals.

I know Osama Bin Laden is dead and gone, but it just feels to me like things have relaxed from irrationally high alert to a leisurely, careless walk in the park.

At American Airlines Arena in Miami they had bomb-sniffing dogs to check bags, but not once did security personnel check to make sure the ugly mug on my credential matched the uglier one atop my actual neck. And, truth be told, on my way in to Game 6 no one looked inside my bag at all.

At American Airlines Center the media was subjected to human bag searches and metal-detecting wand scans, but again, not a look to see if credentials matched carrier.

But that's only the tip of the trouble.

In Miami I stayed at the Hotel Intercontinental. Upscale, but not luxurious. On Monday a certain leader of the free world was there for a fundraising dinner en route to praising the Mavs' J.J. Barea in Puerto Rico.

After my afternoon radio show on 105.3 The Fan from a studio in Miami I drove up to the hotel, only to be stopped by a gaggle of state troopers, local police and what I assumed to be Secret Service agents protecting the well-being of President Barack Obama. There were cop cars all along the freeways and downtown, re-routing traffic away from the hotel.

But this -- swear -- was the extent of my exchange as I pulled up in my rented silver Jeep Patriot:

Officer: You staying at the hotel?

   Me: Yessir.

Officer: Room number?

   Me: 2016.

Officer (as he flips through a thick stack of white papers on a clipboard): Mr. Whitt?

   Me: Yessir, that's me.

Officer: Okay, pop your trunk and your hood.

After one agent waved that mirror-on-a-stick under the car for a minute and another took a flashlight to parts of the engine, I was waved on to valet parking.

Before we drove away Greggo ridiculously asked, "Hey, what's this all about?" The incredulous retort: "There's VIP at the hotel."

Troubling part: Both Greggo and I had computer bags in the back seat directly behind us. At no time were they checked. And at no time was either of us asked to show identification. Not sure exactly how they were convinced I was a harmless Mr. Whitt. Shouldn't he have made me cough up my name instead of just having me nod to whatever name he spit out?

Again, maybe there were agents eyeing us for miles as we approached the hotel. Maybe background checks were performed on every guest in the hotel and security didn't sense a viable threat from a short, douchey media dork. And maybe that stack of papers had my entire bio on it. Who knows?

But without showing ID, without having my bag checked and without another question I was allowed to give the car to valet and walk into the hotel lobby. At that point -- not that I ever would, obviously -- couldn't I have detonated some sorta explosive device in that bag that could've done severe damage?

I did have to go through a metal detector with my bag before entering the elevator to my room. But still...

On the way back to Dallas the next morning another "breach."

The TSA employee running the X-ray machine at Miami International Airport was giddy at finding and confiscating Greggo's unopened plastic bottle of orange Gatorade. But while she was gloating at her find, she somehow missed something else:

My 3/4-full plastic bottle of previously opened Evian water.

God bless America.


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65 comments
richie's mailman
richie's mailman

I went to games at the AAC four times this year.  They had metal detector wands and were looking in bags.  I breezed right through every time, they didn't give me a look.

BTW, Richie, I like your show.

Watching Sotuh Detroit
Watching Sotuh Detroit

They can't win - if they had given RW the full cavity, RW would have written an article on "how violated" he felt and "oppressive" they are ....or he might have circled the car around so they could do it again.

tortoise
tortoise

Richie....you're the man. Your comments are fresh and always interesting. Forget the haters.

Kergo 1 spaceship
Kergo 1 spaceship

I knew I smelled the Stanley Cup.......I just knew it!  Mav's=pretty cool.  F'in' Bruins=real perfection.  REAL, real perfection. Top 5 moment.  Bobby Orr-the greatest; and, when that is what you strive for, you can accomplish anything.  Anything.  Salute' boys.  My life is totally and utterly complete.

Salute' Dirk, totally classy. The way you have carried yourself, with the humble nature of a simple laymen, makes you LEGEND.  True legend.

I was on the front line when "Cubes" bought the team , and was D. Rodman's personal attendant when he lived in the pool house at MC's estate.  Thank you Mr. Cuban. THANK YOU.

Salute' also to Mr. Holloway, Mr. Woodall and everyone else involved........Kergie out!

legend?  not compared to what I've seen this week.

antiarmen
antiarmen

I'm so sick of this "PC" BULLSHIT! Untill blonde-haired, blue-eyed SMU cheerleaders start blowing themselves up, we know who we're dealing with! Baby, if I were incharge, the sign would read "All Middle Easterner's, and Middle Easterner Look-a-likes, the Line Starts Over Here"!

Kergo 1 spaceship
Kergo 1 spaceship

I smell a Stanley Cup boys!   GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Boston!

minimark
minimark

The coolest thing about this, when you think about this - is that they told you to pop your trunk and hood.  They weren't worried about you.  They were worried about who might know that you  were at that hotel and might have planted something out of site.   Richie, you might should have thought this through before posting the hotel part!  On the airport part, 100% agree!

minimark
minimark

I think they background checked all staying at the hotel and even had a pic of you when they questioned you. Were you alone?  If you were bunking with someone they obvously knew who you were since they called you your name and not your roommates.  Don't underestimate the Secret Service.  They damn sure knew who you were.

RayRay
RayRay

Richie, I dig the story and RAGE. The rest of these cock holsters need to step away from the computer in their grandma's basement and go meet a girl. Ray Ray - Ft. Worth

Tarms62163
Tarms62163

They are only concerned about your vehicle being a car bomb, a brief case sized bomb is no threat to the President in that hotel. Chuck G. shouldn't make fun of your hair transplants or your ratings, you and Greggo rock.

streetrace43
streetrace43

He is here; that is the real Kergo.  You can tell by the verbage.  Boy ya, talk about laying low.  Rom Em is going to be pissed.

kergo 1 spaceship
kergo 1 spaceship

Still here, but lurking!  I'm waiting to pounce and lay out a 3 page discourse on reality and will.  But just know, I'M HERE.  Takin' notes. Summizing.  Checking.  Cooking on the smoker w/a cold Shiner in hand.  Reading up on the great Hunter S. Thompson.  Lurking.  Going back into the catalog w/some Mark Twain.  Hiding.  Like a puma.  Going over my Aldous Huxley and Joseph Campbell notes.  Peering.  Don't ya'll piss me off!  I'll have ya'll livin' in huts again by Monday.

Regards,   Kergo/Provisional Gubner-Ind. State of Texas

LEGEND.

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

Meant to tell y'all, run don't walk over to Deadspin and read the article on Stay Soft, Dirk...it's awesome writing and a welcomed look back at a rough spot in the road for Dirk. 

Not to "Profile" RW, but you and your boyfriend Greggo, wouldn't rank very high on security screening ..Y'all look like a Bear and a Midget taking in the sights in Miami during their honeymoon, not that uncommon down there..I reckon.  We'd raise an eyebrow out in Parker County (and then laugh after y'all were out of earshot), but in Dade county..y'all were one of thousands..consequently millions.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

You didn't look like a guilty, what else do you need to know?

Thanks for the rehash of yesterday's 530-6 segment.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

Random radio observations because I want to. You can thank me later for the increased hit count on an otherwise mediocre post.

-New School=bad. Not every call is a great call, Shan. You also don't need to remind us every 15 seconds what the show name is. Neck and neck with Mike & Mike or turning off the radio as a Muser break time-kill.

-What's Dan's obsession with audio? Bud & Dingus have been pretty damn good during the Mavs run, but playing fifteen seconds of audio, stopping, commenting, starting it up again repeating the last five seconds, and doing it over and over for something not all that interesting to start with gets old.

-Josh & Elf--talk about some dated, dorky references sometimes. Elf slips into dad joke mode too often, and they get sidetracked on mundane stuff easily. Very hit or miss. But no Lacey makes it much better. Still the best Fail show, but that's like picking the best Cowboy secondary player.

-Who. Thought. Allowing. Kelly. Webster. To speak. On. Mic. Was a. Good. Idea? Holy crap, talk about over-enunciating and more start-stop a style than even Rhads.

-RAGE. Your travel story segment yesterday was pretty good. The conversational style fits you two well, but you don't go to it enough. The forced, contrived stuff is terrible. Luckily for you, the one time I've tuned in the past week or so was that segment. Still, HL has to be off on some douchey tangent for me to give it a shot.

-Very thankful The Ticket hasn't felt the need to already start on generic, pandering Cowboy/football talk. Unlike some other places.

linefourguy
linefourguy

Since they didn't ask for Greggo's room number I'm assuming they took one look at you and correctly assumed he was your top.

Davy Crockett
Davy Crockett

Year when I was passing through security at O'Hare, the agent grabbed my ID and boarding pass, didn't even look at them and said "Have a nice flight, Mr. Roberts". Not even remotely close to my name. Yet I've had one of Chicago's finest pat me down while entering Wrigley.

Walking thru metal detectors at Fort Worth City Hall last month, I forgot to take my belt off and was waved on regardless of setting off the alarm.

RW, I promise you that the Secret Service had run all kinds of checks on you and deemed you "a short, douchey media dork" with zero potential threat.

Evian
Evian

I know we come in bottles, but never knew we came in a battle.

Just a Dude
Just a Dude

In a free society there is no real security, just the belief that most people will do the right thing most of the time or that if they don't that they will face justice.  We have given up enough personal freedoms in search of security as it is... I will take my chances with our "unsafe" America. 

Steves
Steves

How big of a bomb do you think you were going to get ina computer bag?  And how close do you think you were going to get that bag to wherever POTUS was going to be?  It's all about exclusion zones- the closer you get, the higher the security, the more intrusive the checks, etc. 

Storm_71
Storm_71

I'm sorry you did not get the hard core anal probe you wanted RW. Maybe next time. As to why they did not ask for ID come man your fucking Richie Whitt. The same guy that Shaq chauffeured around in a Hummer Limo. The same guy that was responsible for Mark Cuban's not speaking to the media during the playoffs. Give yourself some credit man. I'm surprirsed that president didn't ask for your fucking autograph.

Mishon
Mishon

Meh. I couldn't care less about your trip to Miami.

Have you just completely forgot about the Rangers???? I understand the Mavs have gotten the attention lately, and rightfully so. However, hoops is done now Whitt. Time to start showing the red shoes a little bit of love.

Colby is a mess and Ogando can't seem to beat the Yankees. Now start blogging.

Hare
Hare

Fuck you for beating me!

gofuhcureself
gofuhcureself

I'm going to have to agree with minimark. I'm sure they had already vetted you and Greggo.

Mishon
Mishon

We don't have basements in Texas. Some of us live in the guest house at our parent's place while others live in the garage. Get it right.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

thats so original, it has all the necessary internet cutdowns, basement, computer, parents and a foul name involving privates.  Congrats you went to the internet school of bullying.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

'Twas an excellent read. And no author self-references either.

linefourguy
linefourguy

Well said. Bob and Dan (and I think Donnie) hate LeBron, ok I get it, move on. They're becoming unlistenable lately.  If I hear one more breakdown of his post game speech I am switching to radio telemundo.  We're all bitching that it should be about the Mavs winning and not the Heat losing, yet we seem to be spending a large amount of airtime into how bad LeBron was and how great it is that he failed.  If anyone has a recording of bad radio today count the number of times they said LeBron against the number of times they said Dirk.  Wasn't that our fear the national media would do?  

Greggo's relapse
Greggo's relapse

Great observations. Never listen to New School, but does he say it more than Richie says Greggo?

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

Wrigley thing must be because you look so shady..(ha)..went there last year meself and nobody even looked at the average 30 something white business guy.  FW city hall, I don't know about..but they've kept about three of my pocket knifes when I used to report for Tarrant county jury duty.

Richie Whitt
Richie Whitt

You can't blow stuff up with a back-pack sized bomb? Hmm.

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

I was thinking the same thing Stormy, he's probably butt hurt about not getting the full pat down too. 

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

I hereby nominate this in the post of the year competition.

Richie Whitt
Richie Whitt

Rangers? Wake me up when they win a championship.

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

Ogando got roughed up last time he was in NYY as well, just didn't take the loss...blip on the radar sir.  Bright Lights, methinks.  Colby is far more troubling than Ogando.

Richie's prostate massaging
Richie's prostate massaging

I agree. I think Ogando finally having trouble at the plate is a much bigger story than a TSA employee finding Greggo's cocaine that he was trying to smuggle back in a gatorade bottle. Wheres the Rangers news?

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

Imagine how disappointed I was when that segment bumped dead and gone. There has to be a better way for rental car return. They make it impossible on the airport premises.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

That being said, there has to be some suspicion of two white guys in a jeep when a black president is around. Unless the cop just thought they were gay, which is a definite possibility with Greggo's taste in clothing along with RW's P90x'd body, hair plugs, and ripped jeans. He should get an earring while he's at it.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

Pretty much. I'm surprised Shariff didn't say it over and over during Mavs postgame questions.He ALMOST resets as much as BDH does.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

That'd be a close one. Thank Jeebus Shan and Richie aren't on a show together.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

Jesus, are you the only one that could read and write in that county? how are you getting pegged for that many?

Storm_71
Storm_71

Oh sorry little buddy would you like a Whopper Jr?

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin

Do you really hate the Rangers that much, or did you forget to use the sarcasm font

Mishon
Mishon

Is that how it is? You are bored with the Rangers b/c they have no championship? You're an ass. How quickly you have forgotten how excited you were about them making the World Series last year. Sorry they couldn't win it for you.

I love hearing Greggo's analysis on the Rangers so I listened to a lot of your show today. I made it about 3 hours in and not jack squat about them, but plenty of stupid shit like White Truck Wednesday and Sybil's Shit or Junk or Stuff or whatever the hell you guys call it. Keep up the great work!  

linefourguy
linefourguy

And you wonder why they left the Fan?

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

RW's soooo ahead of you bro..probably has a taint ring or somesuch as well...ripped garanimals, only the finest in preripped children sized clothing.

TheRealDirtyP1
TheRealDirtyP1

I got called into Collin County once, in an out in 30 minutes. My work pays for 3 jury days for some reason, as long as you sign your jury duty check over to them. I went home, took a nap, and played golf after. Thank you legal system. God Bless America.

Josh's broken records
Josh's broken records

I'm telling you what man, Over the course of 18 months..I was called 3 effing times...for a total of 4 days vacation burned by me, cause mework don't roll like that.  Never made a jury, imagine that..cause I would write crazy shit on their little form..but still burned two days once and a day apiece the other two times...but I did get to keep all those dang 6$ checks...I'M RICH...been in Parker County for 4 1/2 years, knock on wood, and have yet to be called once.

Mishon
Mishon

@2a37696763772166964f9cb63e506b0f:disqus 

I definetly believe there is some truth to that.

I'll just go somewhere else for Rangers analysis. I already do, but since I come here anyway it would be nice to get more while I'm here. I guess that's too much to ask. The Cowboys haven't won a F-ing thing in 16 years, but we get bombarded with posts about them...and it will only increase after he runs out of things to say about the Mavs in a couple of days. I especially enjoyed the post about Jody Dean continuing his job as PA announcer at Cowboy's Stadium. You know, since people give a shit about who the PA guy is. 

Radio Sales
Radio Sales

the rangers abandoning radio's version of the titanic has upset midgie whitt. ever notice how ever since they left he has written nothing but negative pieces on them including paternity leave and insinuating josh relapsed while he was in the hospital for pneumonia?

FACT: RANGERS MGMT WAS UPSET AT THEIR FLAGSHIP STATION FOR NOT TALKING ENOUGH BASEBALL AND WHEN THEY DID TALK RANGERS THEY WERENT KNOWLEDGEABLE.RANGERS TOOK LESS $ TO BOLT FOR ESPN RADIO

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