I do want to add a clarification. I respect and appreciate (almost all of) the TSA workers I encounter, as I travel regularly for work. I also have a special appreciation for what they are doing / attempting to prevent. On September 10, 2001, I boarded a flight from Chicago to New York for work, as we had a series of meetings planned with a potential customer in the NYC area. I checked in to my hotel on Monday day, with a reservation to stay through Friday. My wife was supposed to join me for the trip, but plans changed a few days beforehand.
I got up the next morning, ordered a starbucks in the lobby of the hotel, and walked one block away to my (at the time) employer’s office, on the 36th floor of One Liberty Plaza, and about 30 minutes later, all hell broke loose.
We heard the planes flying into the World Trade Center, and saw first-hand all of the horror of that day. After the second plane hit, we evacuated the building, and I, along with 4 other out of town co-workers, ended up walking across the Brookyn Bridge and then taking a car service to the office manager’s apartment in Brooklyn. The next day, I got literally the last Hertz vehicle at Islip Airport for a long 2-day drive back to Chicago.
Oh, and the hotel I checked into - was indeed the Marriott World Trade Center, between the two towers. I’m SOOOOOO glad that my wife’s plans were changed and she wasn’t travelling with me.
So while we all can get occasionally frustrated with some of the things that happen with the TSA when we travel, I usually try to thank them for the job they are doing, and tell them briefly why I have a special appreciation for what they are doing. (Even when / especially when a bag of mine is pulled aside.) They really seem to appreciate it, because I can only imagine what they probably hear from 99.5% of the travelers they interact with.
My challenge to you all: the next time you are going through airport security, unless an agent does something that not right / not smart / etc. - take an extra 10 seconds and say “Thank you” to them - I will bet it will put a smile on their face, and make a truy difference for them in a typically thankless job.