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I like the saying petty powers corrupt petty people.
These petty people should never be put in any position of power and authority overt others. There are available some very good psychological profile testing methods that can and should be used to weed out these sorts of people. These tests should be routinely applied at entry to these sorts of positions and at various times throughout there tenure in the positions.
The guy reacted badly to the border guards questioning but you expect that some members of the public ( on both sides of the boarder) will simply be assholes and that any one trained and experienced in dealing with the public will realize that and not escalate the situation needlessly.
However had I been the guy crossing the border, I’d simply comply with the guards demands and then after I was out of his power and range of his authority I ‘d be complaining loud and long and in a formal manner, about his conduct.
On the other hand being a border crossing guy is not a job I’d want to have. He has to let through people that have a right to pass the border without hassling them but stop everyone who should not cross, sometimes at a personal risk. Even if someone has all their papers in order and they are allowed but commit some crime once across, the border guy will take at least some heat for allowing the person to pass.
I always find it strange that only reasonable people agree with me.
My experience tells me that many people are in law enforcement that have no business being there. I always thought we should draft law enforcement, like we used to draft the military. With a few lifers for obvious reasons. Why?
Because coming from family that has a few cops in it, (now retired) I met quite a few that were in this profession for personal, egocentric reasons. They "got off" on the authority over other people, and this showed in their bedside manner, or car side manner. These guys always had an attitude with the folks they stopped. And should never have been cops.
But, after listening to the audio tape again, the Canadian had an attitude problem as well. He should have learned, to keep his mouth shut, except when trying to answer the officer's questions. He did not help his situation at all. I find that saying yes sir, no sir, and cooperating to my fullest ability helps you get back on your way. To argue, is really stupid. To smart off is as well. Loose lips never help.
I don't get why not knowing which exact store one is going to in a mall would be any sort of red flag though. I think the officer got pissed off, and used his authority to show this guy who was the boss. The egocentic variable. Blue Doggy
"I don't know".
"Well, you have stores in outlet malls in Canada. The turn-around lane is right over there. Have a nice day".
The last time I crossed the border from Canada to the US, I was going to visit friends down in Fairport, just outside Rochester. The border agent asked me their names and what their address was. Now, if I didn't have this information (say, instead, I was meeting them somewhere other than their home), I don't know what the border agent would've done, because I'm an American. But I was still asked, and he still wanted answers.
I gave him his answers, he did some quick check on the computer, handed me back my passport and said "Welcome home".
And I didn't mind it one single bit. I want our border agents to be tough. I want them to be, in some circumstances, difficult to deal with. Let Canada have the pussies who won't even take a foreign passport from the hand of a driver before allowing that driver into the country...