When Abdullah Al-Bariq passed through security at Detroit Metro Airport last weekend without being questioned, detained, or extensively-searched, he was delighted, yet very surprised.
"Usually I get to the airport at least 12 hours ahead of time," said Al-Bariq, "because every time, I'm either detained and questioned or they make me go through extra body searches."
However, last weekend as he passed through security at Detroit Metro Airport to board his flight to Houston, TX, Al-Bariq was let through without any extra hassle from security agents.
"For the first since nine-eleven, they didn't bother me," he said. "I just got the usual 'Oh, crap, there's an Arab guy on my plane,'-look from the other passengers."
Al-Bariq emigrated from the United Arab Emirates in 1993. He works as sales agent for an Ann Arbor, MI-based automobile parts manufacturer, a job that requires frequent travel.
"I fly a lot because of my job," he said, "and, unfortunately, I get detained and held at security a lot."
His airport experiences have been so bad, Al-Bariq thought about asking his employer for a new position, however, the 41 year-old husband and father of two teenage girls, learned to live with the extra hassle at airports.
"They think I'm some sort of terrorist," he asserted, "so I just learned to live with it. There really isn't much I can do."
Al-Bariq stressed how he loves America and contended that he does not have any ties to terrorism.
"Me and my family love America," said Al-Bariq, who reflected on September 11th, and how it particularly impacted him.
"[9-11] was just so terrible," he said. "Nineteen of my good friends died that day. I was very sad."