Tensions at airports are running a little high these days, especially in Florida. Earlier this year a man opened fire in the baggage claim area of the Fort Lauderdale airport killing five and wounding eight. Ever since both the media and the airlines have been freaking out about firearms in airports.
Just last week the Orlando Sentinel published an article sounding the alarm over the continued ability to have an unloaded and locked firearm in your checked baggage. One man in Orlando last night decided not to help the situation, creating an hours-long standoff in an airport while wielding a fake firearm.
Hundreds of officers descended on Orlando International Airport on Tuesday night after reports of a man with a gun near the rental car area. But the weapon turned out to be fake, authorities said.
A two-hour standoff that followed sent panicked travelers fleeing, with some hiding behind concrete barriers in the parking lot.
Police later confronted the man and ended the standoff after nearly two hours. No shots were fired and no one was injured during the incident contained to a rental car area, the Orlando Police Department said.
According to the cops, the man was looking for the cops to help him commit suicide. The fake gun definitely looked real from a distance, but the screw holes in the frame are a dead giveaway upon close examination. Not that the cops had that opportunity.
Any situation where someone is threatening harm with a firearm needs to be taken seriously, as was done in this case. Naturally those in favor of gun control will contrive some way to blame even this incident on the “easy availability of guns.” And they’ll decry the gun culture in the US.
The fact is, though, that attacks at airports happen all over the world, in places like Turkey and Belgium. What this incident should teach us isn’t to be afraid of airports but instead to be vigilant, keeping your situational awareness up at all times in these largely gun-free zones. Because in reality, actual attacks on airports by determined terrorists can and will happen.