Like many black women, Laura Adiele quit relaxing and straightening her hair to embrace her natural curls. But her choice had an unintended consequence.
"When I first heard her say, 'We're going to have to pat you down,' I thought she was talking about my body," Adiele told The Grio. "I was turning around and putting my arms out and she said, 'no, we're going to have to examine your hair,' and I said, 'no, we're not going to do that today and you're going to have to get security or your supervisor.'"
Adiele said an agent told her was their policy to check anything that "poofs from the body," but Adiele said she was checked while other non-black women with "big hair [and] ponytails" who were not.
"They put the gloves on and now they're really just digging around in my hair and I'm like, arrgg! Why is this happening?" she said.
She has since filed a complaint with the TSA. The agency's regional spokesperson said the TSA takes charges of racial discrimination seriously, but said that he was confident the security officers were just doing their jobs.
In the meantime, Adiele will have to live with this humiliating memory. But did the TSA go too far?