Remember, only trained law enforcement officers and the military are qualified enough to handle the awesome responsibility of gun ownership. But a number of federal air marshals who fly the friendly skies seem to have a problem responsibly wielding their gats.
The marshals undergo extensive firearms training…in theory.
Air marshals are required to undergo recurrent training that includes quarterly marksmanship evaluations and annual off-range safety courses, but a 2016 report by the Government Accountability Office found the air marshal service did not have complete and timely data on the extent to which its officers completed that training. (Thomas) Kelly, the air marshal spokesman, said TSA has implemented the GAO’s recommendations on how to better evaluate air marshal training.
However . . .
The Transportation Security Administration’s Office of Inspection has documented more than 200 cases of air marshals allegedly misusing firearms or misbehaving with guns between roughly 2005 and 2017, according to records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.
What kind of mishaps did the TSA inspectors find?
In 19 of the cases, air marshals allegedly fired their weapons accidentally. For example, the documents state that in 2017 an agent based in Charlotte, North Carolina, “unintentionally discharged a personally owned firearm resulting in a gunshot wound to his right foot.”
A 2013 case described an air marshal mistakenly firing his weapon inside a hotel room and damaging a television in an adjoining room.More than 70 of the incidents relate to lost, misplaced or stolen weapons. At least three of those cases involved air marshals forgetting their firearms in airplane bathrooms. Two others involved weapons misplaced in airports.
The average American can’t possibly be trusted to avail themselves of the means of armed self-defense. Let them dial 911 if they have a problem and leave the firearms to the professionals.
Never mind that violent crime and accidental gun deaths have both plummeted over the last quarter century, a time period when the civilian gun ownership has almost doubled and the number of concealed carriers has soared.
And the fact that Americans successfully defend themselves with more than 1.1 million times a year is completely beside the point.
Those are all just NRA talking points. Or something. We need to make it much more difficult for Mrs. and Mrs. America to own guns. Because we all have a right to feel safe, right?