A man says that as he was about to board his plane in Los Angeles Tuesday the Transportation Security Administration "stole" his belt buckle because it was shaped like a gun.
Image source: Facebook/Sean Malone
Sean Malone wrote on his blog Tuesday that he'd left his hotel too late and then got stuck in LA traffic. So by the time he arrived at the airport, his plane was already boarding.
"So when the officers took the buckle and called their supervisor to ask about what they should do, I simply did not have time to battle them up the chain of command again. Instead of miss my flight, I had no choice but to leave it with them," Malone wrote.
And by "again," Malone was referring to a similar incident which had occurred two days earlier as he was leaving Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. In that instance, Malone said he protested long enough he was able to talk to the supervisor of the terminal and they eventually allowed him to take it on the plane.
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Malone said as he was going through security leaving Washington, D.C., a man told him there was something in there that was "kind of shaped like a gun."
"Yeah, it's a belt buckle," Malone responded.
The worker then took it out of the bag and looked at it just before calling over another worker, who told him, "Listen, you can either go back out of security and put this in your check[ed] luggage, or we'll confiscate it."
But Malone didn't check any luggage.
"You understand that this is a belt buckle, right?" he said he asked. "It is not a danger to the safety of anyone nor is it against the law to carry." Malone then asked them how they would justify confiscating it.
"What if you take this object out of your bag and point it – like a gun – at a police officer?" one of the workers reportedly asked. "He would have no choice to assume that it was a gun, and take action against you."
When Malone asked the worker why he would point his belt buckle at a police officer, she he said she had no answer.
Malone then pointed out that even if he was to do such a thing, it would only risk harm to himself and not anyone else onboard the plane. After refusing to "have a debate" about it," the worker reminded him, "You have two options. That's it," she said.
That's when Malone said he asked to speak with her supervisor. But after she took the belt buckle over to show to her supervisor, she came back to Malone, handed him his belt buckle and said, "Here you go. Have a good flight, sir."
But Malone allegedly had no such luck as he was departing LA Tuesday. After his gun "replica" belt buckle was "stolen" by TSA personnel, Malone recalled running the the whole way to his his gate with his pants almost falling down, barely making it in time to board his flight.
Clearly upset, Malone also wrote on his blog: "The TSA is busy protecting you from the scourge of novelty belt buckles. Meanwhile, their track record of stopping an actual threat: terrible."
The TSA did not immediately provide a comment to TheBlaze when asked why Malone's gun-shaped belt buckle was confiscated in LA while agents in Washington eventually allowed him to take it on the plane.
Editor's note: This post has been updated to redact an embedded tweet containing strong language include another tweet by Malone (@Logicologist).
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