Most everyone gets that you can't shout "fire" in a movie theater or crack jokes about bombs on an airplane. This sort of thing will get you in a mess of trouble. But, apparently, jokes made on Twitter can also get you in trouble, particularly if you are a foreigner using slang we don't get in 'Merica or quotes from our own television shows.
A pair of British tourists on holiday (that's Brit-slang for vacation) stateside were detained and ultimately sent packing back to England because of tweets they posted prior to their arrival which contained the phrases "destroy America" -- destroy being a colloquial English term for "get drunk and party in" -- and "diggin' up Marilyn Monroe," a reference to an episode of that oh-so-American of institutions Family Guy.
They were detained by TSA agents who asked them why they wanted to destroy our beloved country (*hums the national anthem*) and were searched looking for shovels in order to "dig up" the iconic starlet. I wish I was joking. They couple was kept overnight in holding areas with people accused of drug trafficking before being put on a plane back home. The link above has a snapshot of the actual form denying access on which the agent wrote that the accused had posted on his "Tweeter website account." Wow.
In an effort to protect our fellow citizens and those of you who might like to plan a vacation in our police state, we offer you five tweets you might want to avoid.
5. I love Allah. In America, particularly American airports, it is best to avoid mentions of any religion that doesn't include Jesus or the generic "God." Any mention of anything you are passionate about could get you in trouble, so stick with non-controversial topics online like abortion or Tim Tebow.
Queensrÿche's epic '80s metal opusOperation: Mindcrime
had a few choice lyrics in it like, "Let's tip the power balance and tear down their crown / Educate the masses, We'll burn the White House down." Of course, the concept album's songs composed a story about a man being brainwashed into committing acts of terrorism, but if the TSA doesn't know about Twitter or that Marilyn Monroe is in a crypt, not a grave, how could they be expected to know the lyrics of a prog-metal band? Same goes for basically any punk band or hip-hop artist. In fact, don't ever post lyrics on Twitter.
3. Ayn Rand quotes. This could be a problem for hardcore libertarians, who love the controversial author, but we bet if you send out a tweet with "Potentially, a government is the most dangerous threat to man's rights: it holds a legal monopoly on the use of physical force against legally disarmed victims," in it, it could be flagged. Truth is, Rand scares the crap out of a lot of people and I bet government security agencies are on that list. While you're at it, better avoid the Rush album 2112 too, which is based on Rand's Anthem.
2. Politics All it takes is one smart-ass remark about Obama and some hippie-loving lib-o-crat working as a jackbooted thug for the TSA will strip-search you looking for your white supremacy manifesto and bomb-making residue. And if you're on the other side of the political spectrum, one crack about conservatives might land you in Guantanamo. Keep your tweets to the usual Internet fare: cute animals, silly memes and videos of people falling down.
1. I have a bomb and I will blow up the airplane I'm going to fly on today. HA HA! I'm kidding. Not funny, dude. Not funny.