Queer Eye star Tan France is accusing the Transportation Security Authority (TSA) of racial profiling after being stopped at airport security three times in one week. He also says he was told he is “on a list” of potential security risks.
“I’ve been put through extra security checks 3 times this week, and was just told by a TSA agent it’s because my name is on a list,” France tweeted earlier this week. “WTF? I’m brown but that does NOT mean I’m a damn security risk!!!”
France, a gay Muslim, was born in England. His parents are Pakistani.
On Instagram, France elaborated on what had happened with even more shocking details.
“I’ve just gone through security at the airport, it took me over two hours. And this is now the third time this week,” he posted.
“What happens is when you’re checking in, they tell you that you can’t use your pre-check because there’s a security issue. At that point they take you out of line, and then they search you, and they give you a pat down—which is humiliating—where they check everything.”
France says he posted to social media “so I can tag TSA and hopefully they’ll see this at some point and figure out why the fuck they’re treating me like this.”
“Because I know the answer. I know why I’m being profiled.”
The TSA’s Twitter account responded to France with a routine reply that didn’t go over well with fans.
“We’re sorry to hear this,” the account tweeted. “DHS TRIP can provide resolution to travelers with difficulties getting through security and inspection at airport checkpoints.”
“All airline passengers, regardless of race, gender, or religion, are thoroughly screened at airport screening checkpoints,” the TSA elaborated in a statement to E! News. “TSA cannot comment on the security designation for specific individuals, and there are a number of reasons a passenger can be selected for additional screening, including by random designation.”
@TSA I’ve been put through extra security checks 3 times this week, and was just told by a TSA agent it’s because my name is on a list. WTF? I’m brown but that does NOT mean I’m a damn security risk!!!
— Tan France (@tanfrance) December 12, 2018