Friday, December 02, 2005

Airport insecurity

It’s about time:

      Airline passengers soon will be able to take small scissors and screwdrivers aboard planes again, Transportation Security Administration chief Kip Hawley announced Friday.

      Hawley said the change will take effect Dec. 22 and is part of a broader effort aimed at having screeners spend more of their time searching for explosives rather than small, sharp objects that don't pose as great a risk. The small implements were banned after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Holy cow.  I could have told them that years ago.  I don’t mean to be conceded about that, think about it.  Before 9/11 most people flying airlines pictured hijackers as folks with some request, like get our comrades out of prison, or take us to Cuba.  Something like that.   After 9/11 potential passengers realize that there are people in this world willing to kill themselves and a whole host of other people in order to get their point across (or perhaps just take several infidels with them).  At the time, the hijackers were brandishing box cutting knives.

But look what happened when people on board the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania got wind of what the hijackers were planning.  They fought back.  Is it possible for hijackers to take control of a plane now with anything less than an Uzi and a blowtorch (for the locked cabin)?  I would opine that it’s impossible now, considering the extra safety measures and the consciousness of modern passengers.

And yet up until now federal standards for things you can't take on planes borders on children's toy kitchen knives.  A couple of years ago I took a flight and forgot I had an old wine key in my bag.  It had a corkscrew and a small knife, the kind you use to tear the foil on a bottle of wine.  And yet the security guy told me that if the knife hadn't been there it would have been fine.  I could barely cut a sliver of cheese with that knife, and would have been more afraid of an antagonist brandishing the corkscrew than the inch long knife part.

So what took the feds so long?
Glenn Reynolds says: A SHOCKING SIGN of Intelligence in the Homeland Security area.

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