Fame just isn’t what it used to be. On Friday, New Jersey Police stopped Bob
Dhillon Dylan for suspicious activities, i.e. walking around in a minority neighborhood in the rain and looking at a house for sale, and refused to let him go until he produced identification.
Then today, as Phillygrrl reported, SRK was detained at Newark. But at least he got privileged treatment, they let him make a phone call after an hour, and the Indian government was able to step in. (This isn’t going to help suppress rumors that it was all a publicity stunt for his film)
But what happens to people who aren’t famous? Let’s say they’re Muslim, Brown, Pakistani and working for the US government? Then it seems you can be detained and not even the government agency you’re working for can get you out:
Rahman Bunairee is a Pakistani journalist who works as a contract reporter for VOA’s Deewa Radio and for a privately-owned Pakistani television station. The 33-year-old planned to join VOA [Voice of America] in Washington for one year, and arrived at Dulles Airport on Sunday with a visa issued by the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad. It is not clear why he was detained and why he is still being held in U.S. custody… The journalist, whose home was destroyed by the Taliban last month, was taken into custody on Sunday. [link]
This is a guy who the US government wants to come and live in DC for a year and be part of the public face of America to the outside world. He has no love for the Taliban and the feeling is mutual. And what happens? He tries to enter the country, he’s detained for a week and counting, and nobody will even tell the “Voice of America” why.
The moral of the story? If you’re detained by immigration, you better hope you have friends at the Indian Government and Fox rather than the US government, because the latter can’t do what the former can.