For weeks, the gnashing of teeth could be heard worldwide regarding the TSA’s new way to create porn images or get a happy ending (depending on your preference upon screening). Many folks suggested solutions to the problem, and those ideas generally revolve around abolishing the current system for screening. Obviously, the TSA is not wild about the alternatives, and they remain committed to their course of action.
Well, it’s time we started thinking outside the box.
As before, I’m just full of ideas.
This time, we should go against our gut. Most folks want to keep dangerous things away from aircraft. Perhaps, however, the best answer is to put more dangerous items onto our aircraft.
Let me explain.
My new solution involves arming passengers. That’s right, do away with the enhanced security, X-rays, and feely feels. Those cost lots of money, man-hours, and maintenance. Plus, the overhead on the Xray technology is tens of millions each year. Instead, provide certain, specially selected passengers with weapons (or items that could double as weapons). It would be like making them a junior deputy sky marshal. They could even get a little plastic badge.
Each flight would have an arsenal of items to present. These might be as simple as small blades or as high-end as firearms. It all depends on the flight and the passengers aboard. These items, properly maintained, can be used indefinitely. Therefore, the overhead on maintaining this security system is minimal, provided that maintenance and accountability are followed.
Plus, it enables us to provide an armed platoon of our own “troops” aboard to prevent any stupidity by would-be-terrorists. That’s quite a deterrent. Granted, it does little in the event of a bomb, but, let’s face it, a determined bomber is going to make that happen, regardless of our level of security. Heck, even an intended (but frustrated) bombing attempt can achieve the purpose of those ne’er-do-wells.
You know how sometimes you’ll be called to the desk prior to the flight, and they will say, “Sir, you’ve been selected to upgrade to first class.” (code for “crap, we double-booked that seat). Or, “Anyone willing to give up their seat on this flight, please come to the desk and we will give you <airline vouchers or other goodies>.” (code for “crap, we REALLY overbooked this flight.”). Well, this would be similar.
Here is the way boarding would commence (slightly before the normal boarding you experience now):
Attention passengers on flight 123 to Keokuk, Iowa. Before we begin boarding, we’d like for the following people to please come to the service desk:
All current members of our Armed Forces. With membership in this club, you get a simple 9mm Pistol to be used only in certain emergencies deemed as declared by the crew or common sense. Americans love members of the Armed Forces, and this would give them yet another reason to adore the presence of our folks in uniform. ID required.
Former members of the Armed Forces. Here, you get a large knife. Unlike our current servicemembers, we won’t know the various sordid reasons they have for leaving the military. Best to be a little safer. Proof of veteranness required.
Texas residents. These fine, cowboy-hat-and-and-boot-wearing crew get Colt revolvers (in honor of the Houston Colt 45’s (the original name of the Astros)). This is a crew that loves their civil rights and BBQ. Also, we may safely assume they know their way around firearms. However, they will be denied arms if any New York Giants or Yankees fans are aboard. After all, we must provide for the safety of all passengers. Texas DL, a Resistol hat, and Lucchese boots required.
Women experiencing that “not so fresh feeling.” Sure, this is politically incorrect, but it still holds true. Whenever the monthly friend visits, husbands and boyfriends run for cover and wait for the storm to abate. Now, let’s bring that fear and loathing to the terrorists. Each of these lovely individuals receives a switch-blade (for extra intimidation). Proof of status not required. We can just tell.
Any little old man with the “WWII Veteran” hat and lots of hat-pins. He gets the shotgun. Pump action.
I realize that many details should be ironed-out, but I think what I’ve given is a good start. I know that I, personally, will swell with pride when I observe a little-old-man being handed a shotgun.
Just the thought of it makes me feel like eating BBQ.