The TSA and their blue-gloved gropers have become a running joke. I say that not only as a somewhat intelligent American, but because I’ve seen it from the inside. I used to work as a risk analyst on a Department of Homeland Security contract analyzing the risks to American citizens from all sorts of threats including terrorism. I had access to classified information detailing exactly how inept the TSA was at performing their assigned duties. Hint: I make my peace with God before boarding any commercial airliner. A man in Atlanta proved my point yesterday when he boarded an airplane with a loaded handgun . . .
From the local NBC station:
A man says he brought a loaded gun through security at Atlanta’s airport and boarded a Southwest flight without anyone stopping him.
Blake Alford says he didn’t know the gun was in his bag until he arrived at his destination. Alford says it was an innocent mistake, but he felt that he had to come forward.
The problem with creating a truly effective screening process is maintaining constant vigilance. The average trainee probably can spot a handgun no matter what it looks like during training, but after endless weeks of repetition and sheer boredom with no firearms found, it’s easy to become basically useless. “Desensitized” is probably the best term for this. Complacent, certainly.
The fact is, it’s impossible to catch every single firearm that comes through the doors, and I’m guessing that this happens far more often than we hear about (mainly because once they realize what they’ve done, most people don’t want to come forward and admit they just committed a felony).
The TSA has been referred to as “security theater” and that’s pretty accurate. They don’t actually have to be effective to be effective — their existence is generally enough to deter even a competent most threats by even a relatively competent bad actor. The problem is that when a truly skilled, determined attacker comes along, that security we’ve been conditioned to believe will keep us safe is bound to fail. And probably in a big way.
What’s the solution? For me it’s simple — I bought my own plane. And I fly armed all the time. If you don’t have that option, there’s always the interstate highway system.