Wait, this must be a mistake. There can’t be an 8-year-old on the Transportation Security Administration‘s “No-Fly” list, can there?
This 2007 “mythbusters” clip from the official TSA website should clear things up:
No 8-year-old is on a TSA watch list. Airlines can and should automatically de-select any 8-year-olds out there that appear to be on a watch list. Whether you’re eight or 80, the most common occurrence is name confusion and individuals are told they are on the no fly list when in fact, they are not. If you get a boarding pass, you’re not on the no fly list.
There you have it. The TSA has spoken, therefore, it must be true, right?
Michael Winston Hicks is 8 years old. His mother is here to tell you – it’s NOT a myth.
Najlah Feanny Hicks says little Mikey, now a New Jersey Cub Scout, was first patted down when he was 2 years old, yes 2 years old!
She says she knew there would be trouble back when he was a baby and she was unable to get a seat for him on their flight to Florida. Airline officials said his name “was on the list.”
“A terrorist can blow his underwear up and they don’t catch him,” she says. “But my 8-year-old can’t walk through security without being frisked.”
Mikey is not actually on the the government’s official “no-fly” list, but he is on the larger “selectee” list, which sets off a high level of security screening.
At some point, someone named Michael Hicks set off a bunch of bells and whistles at the Department of Homeland Security, and little Mikey’s life hasn’t been the same since.
A spokesman for the TSA says that as a rule, “there are no children on the no-fly or selectee lists,” but he wouldn’t elaborate on Mikey’s situation.
“I understand the need for security,” Mrs. Hicks says. “But this is ridiculous. It’s quite clear that he is 8 years old, and while he may have terroristic tendencies at home, he does not have those on a plane.”
Read more WTF news here.
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- Meet Mikey, 8: U.S. Has Him on Watch List (nytimes.com)
- Mikey Hicks, 8-Year-Old Cub Scout, On Terrorism Watch List (huffingtonpost.com)
- Cub Scout ‘On Terror Watch-List After Mix-Up’ (news.sky.com)