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 TSA Chief John Pistole (courtesy

“The Transportation Security Administration will not arm its officers in the wake of the November attack at Los Angeles International Airport that left one screener dead,” reports. “TSA Administrator John Pistole said a review of the Nov. 1 shooting that killed behavior-detection officer Gerardo Hernandez is centered on improving communications with airport police and local law enforcement, the Associated Press reported. Other key issues are police response time and where panic alarms are placed and how effective they are.” Strange how USA Today, the AP and the TSA avoided any direct mention of the fact that the armed cops who should have been protecting the TSA officer (and the public) were on toilet and lunch breaks at the time of the attack. Allegedly. The TSA union disagreed with Pistole’s anti-pistol position . . .

J. David Cox Sr., national president of the American Federation of Government Employees, said that the union was “disappointed” by Pistole’s comments, calling them “premature” because the shooting investigation has not been completed and the comment period has not closed.

“We encourage the Administrator to avoid making judgments before all of the facts and recommendations have been considered,” Cox said in an e-mail statement to USA TODAY. “The tragic events at LAX exposed a critical vulnerability in our airport screening areas, one that is left unfilled at our peril. The current patchwork of security protocols is not up to the task of defending against sudden and violent attack like the one we witnessed last year. We believe a consistent, professional, and armed presence would close that vulnerability.

“TSA has the authority to create a new classification of professional law enforcement officials to defend our screening areas in a coordinated manner. Our recommendation is that TSA act quickly but judiciously to do just that.”

See now that’s funny! Even the TSA Union knows that it’s members are (as a group) about as ready to counter an active shooter threat as Jabba the Hut (who is, after all, a fictional character). And, with a straight face, they suggest another layer of armed law enforcement officials in charge of transportation security to complement the airport police, city police, state police, U.S. Air Marshals, TSA, FBI, CPB and U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement (where appropriate), DHS and John McClane.

I’ve got an idea! How about we “let” armed Americans exercise their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms while they travel to both deter terrorists and psycho killers and deal with the threat when it arises? It so crazy it just might work!

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  1. Unless and until TSA are truly certified peace officers and “Range Qualified” these idiots need to be kept as far away from firearms as possible

    • Oh that would be a GOOD idea.

      Late 90s my Inf BN got stuck with running a rifle range for a Army Reserve Postal Service unit from Chicago (draw on your stereotypes as you will and you’ll likely be correct). Damn scary. (note they had brand new M16A2 while our “highspeed” NG AASLT Inf Bn was still stuck with worn out ole M16A1. I’m thinking TSA “agents” same same as the Postal Clerks in all ways.

  2. Want more armed security in an airport.
    Us the real American people and take care of our selves and others if need be in an airport situation.
    There are enough gubbermint goons with guns taking doughnut breaks never there when you need one.
    I don’t want another quasi group with a gubbermint jntial ID packing heat when I cant.

  3. But the TSA is the only reason we’re safe!

    But we need more cops carrying guns because the ones we’ve already got are highly competent and overwhelmed with crime!

    But the people can’t be trusted to, you know, take care of themselves!

    /end sarc

    The only TSA check that should be done on civilians is to ensure that all personal ammunition accessible in flight is frangible.

    • Dunno if I’d even give them that. Barring hitting the oxygen supply or a fuel tank a bullet through the fuselage is pretty much going to only create a windy (0.45″ diameter 😉 ) hole…

  4. There are several government “alphabet groups” that should have never been created, let alone still exist. The Aviation and Transportation Security Act (established the TSA) and The Patriot Act are the crown jewel examples of shitty, knee-jerk legislation that follows the political mantra of “never let a national tragedy go to waste”.

    • While I’m a long way from being a conspiracy theorist, it still rubs me wrong that they drafted, passed and signed a 300+ page bill into law in LESS THAN 30 DAYS. One of the most lethargic organizations on Earth (right behind PennDOT) and you’re telling me that bill went from thin air to law in a month? Pardon my language, but BULLSHIT.

      • If I remember correctly, much of the PATRIOT Act had been previously introduced to Congress and rejected as incompatible with, you know, freedom and stuff.

        But then the alphabet agencies and Dick Cheny had their chance come along and the average barely literate guy on the street loved it because he felt safer from (mostly) barely literate haters.

        Can someone provide independent confirmation/denial on the above?

        And why did Al Bore get a nipple ring? (He heard George W. got a Dick Cheny)

        • Cheney?

          Find a new (intelligent) conspiracy. The Demorats had control of the Senate in the fall of 2001 (107th)

        • Yeah, I realized I erred in spelling his name after I couldn’t edit due to a moderation block for having ‘Dick’ in the same post twice.

          And I really wish folks would quit buying into the whole “Republicans/Democrats” thing.

          Having a more palatable letter after ones’ name on the boob tube does not, in fact, indicate any sort of aptitude for the job.

          It just makes it easier to decide what kind of hypnobabble they’re going to parrot ahead of time.

      • I agree that the bulk of the bill was already written. There are 535 members of Congress at any given time. To think that one of those people hadn’t had something written already is about as likely as DiFi coming up with her most recent AWB 5 days after Sandy Hook. The government had been trying to federalize airport security for decades. The majority of this legislation was most likely written in the 1970’s or 80’s and only needed a bit more statist tweaking to arrive at what was passed.

        • You would be surprised how much legislation is pre-drafted ready for “the right moment” to be implemented. Usually in haste and ignorance immediately after a tragic event.

          The “National Firearms Legislation” railroaded through federal parliament by John Howard just after the Port Arthur incident had been a bureaucrat’s wet dream, err… wish list that had been drafted more than five years previously. And since firearms are a state responsibility, how was the legislation imposed on the states? By threatening to withhold federal money allocated to the states if they didn’t.

  5. Excellent.If the average school teacher, meter maid, utility worker, and court clerk can manage without a gun on duty, so can TSA. Unlike the latter , those government employees actually have a necessary job.

    TSAs mission mandate of restoring confidence in the airways is over. September 11 was 13 years ago, the airlines have recovered , and the average American isn’t taking the train to avoid flying.Disband the Federal PR agency and let local law enforcement enforce LOCAL penalties on misbehavior.

  6. Let the TSA be armed, although after looking at the”our staff of professionals are eagerly waiting to serve you picture” this is said with some trepidation. We must always respect the anti’s fear that a TSA handgun could go out of control, & would there be enough people to jump on said handgun & make it behave?, I don’t know, this is pretty complicated stuff. Gotta go now, the latest roster of Russian brides/lookers is here & I know the one would reeealy love me, Randy

    • Holy sh@t I know! I can’t believe it took 30something comments before you pointed this out. Almost as funny as calling the act of tyranny the “Patriot Act”…..

  7. You know what the perfect job for the TSA is? Protecting the other spaceship.

    Someone needs to make sure all the telephone sanitizers get on board safely.

  8. I just got a new kid out of the academy assigned to me.i said ” so what did you do before you got on the job ?”

    He said” I worked for the TSA”.

    Me, oh ” I want my pocket knife and my wife’s underwear back !”

  9. I cannot agree more with keeping TSA unarmed. It is bad enough having them go through you bags and steal. Give them a gun and now you have armed criminals. TSA needs to be abolished and replaced with private sector personnel and held accountable.

    • Airports are owned by municipalitirs. Local LEOs should havr airport security responsibilities. What makes you think rentacops would be any better than TSA? Most likely be the same people.

  10. When we were getting dropped off in Johannesburg Intl, our guide was open carrying his beretta 92. He helped us with our luggage as we walked into the airport.
    I’m not sure how far he could go into the security layers, but it still had me smiling.

  11. Being retired, I am no longer in a hurry to get anywhere. This is why I was able to stop using the airlines to visit my family back east, beginning in 2006. I decided I was no longer willing to have my 4th Amendment rights casually violated for the “privilege” of paying a bunch of money to be treated like a bovine headed into the slaughterhouse. I prefer to drive 4 days each way, rather than being treated like a convicted prisoner in a max security institution. Plus, I can now carry any guns and ammo that I want when I visit the relatives.

    The whole TSA screening process is an excellent way to condition Americans to be docile when they are loaded into the boxcars.

      • I hate to tell you this, but Amtrak is not safe from the TSA jackboots and their oh-so-aptly-named VIPR teams..

        They’re now funded to the tune of $100MM+, have 37 teams, and a few hundred thugs ready to violate your 4th Amendment rights for train travel as well. They grow in size and scope every year.

  12. People in high-security areas such as LAX, the DC Navy Yard and Ft. Hood should feel totally secure in their gun-free zones. Me, I’m shivering in my boots because I know that my guns are more likely to shoot me than a criminal, and I have a lot of guns just waiting in their steel vault with nothing to do but to plot their revenge.

  13. If ppl were allowed to carry on planes there’d be fd up stuff happening constantly. It’s like you guys don’t think there are psychos among us.

    • If people were allowed to carry on planes, there would

      1) be less psychos after a short but suitable interval of time, seeing as most civilians react poorly to threats of severe injury or death in the case of those who would go “all the way” for the cause of the day

      2) be less psychos willing to try stupid stuff on planes due to the natural human instinct of self-preservation. Be a serious jerk, get ventilated, and the airline will knock 1/2 off the next round of airplane booze and let you pay in cash.

      Cheaper than paying the government to provide security, too.

      And in case you haven’t noticed, this cattle-car indoctrination agency really rubs this guy the wrong way.

      Except for that one time in the privacy room with Agent Mary.

    • For heaven’s sake, we can’t have just anybody carrying firearms onto commercial jets. People should have to prove they can pop a hijacker from at least two rows back or four seat’s width laterally. Then they should be able to carry.

    • To even get to the point where someone could carry on a plane you’d have to get laws overturned and get airline lawyers to OK it.
      People forget that airlines are still considered private (in spite of being subsidized) and a private business can tell you what rules you’re going to follow while using its service.

      I don’t see it happening. I think the people who think it ever will happen are living in a fantasy world.

      • We know this. It’s unfortunate at best and asinine at worst.

        For the record, if you’ve got the right job, the right paperwork and background checks out the wazoo carrying on planes is kosher. Seen a guy at the local international airport give the blue shirts a near-heart attack by putting his service firearm through the x-ray machines before handing over a wad of paperwork and an (unknown agency) badge.

        But why ya gotta crush a man’s hopes and dreams like that? I like my fantasy world where I’m somewhat responsible for my own life.

      • All the stupid laws to repeal aside, I suggest we let the free market decide. Allow one airline (or as many as want to participate) to advertise that in their terminal, at their gates, and on their flights anyone presenting a valid (if unconstitutional) CCW permit from any U.S. state may carry their personal handgun of .45 cal. or less.

        Instead of that boiler plate safety belt briefing everyone’s seen/heard a hundred times, have the prettiest Flight Attendant go over the 4 safety rules and ask people to please not shoot in the direction of cabin windows if at all possible. Have a nice flight.

        Let the public decide which airline it wants to spend its money on.

        This has the added advantage that hoplophobes can still choose to use the flying Gun Free Zones if it makes the FEEL safer.

        • In order to deal with carrying on a plane, first you’re going to have to deal with CCW reciprocity. Otherwise, you’re in for a nasty surprise when you step off the plane in Chicago, NYC, or Baltimore with a 4 3/4 inch Peacemaker on your hip.
          Ain’t no way an airline can stay in business if it avoids urban areas because that’s exactly where people are traveling to. Those areas and the states controlled by them are also where the most restrictive gun laws are. So it’s all academic until you work out an agreement with NYC to honor your Missouri CCW permit… unless you like being incarcerated on Riker’s Island.

    • So what you are saying is that not so long ago when we could carry guns on planes “fd up stuff” happened more than it dose today? You might want to find some numbers to back that up.

  14. Given the expense of administration, logistics, & training to ensure their officers don’t shoot themselves and others inadvertently, Good Call!

  15. As the owner of a service dog I appreciate at least one quasi-law enforcement agency thinking of the safety of my animal first.

  16. In terms of safety, TSA is strictly window dressing for those who are unable to think critically. The reality of TSA’s existence is that it is simply part of the relentless machine of government control. It is one if the baby steps along the way to a total police state.

  17. Though my original opinion of the TSA was that it’s a necessary evil, I have to say that discussions on here have swayed that point of view. Though I don’t think TSA employees are any better or worse than anyone else, I am now questioning how they are anything other than “security theatre” as someone on here once said.

    And they also may create another prime target by having so many people caught up in bottlenecks at security stations.

    And back on topic – I also agree with not arming them.

    • That’s a highly-trained dude who wanders around checking out the foxes and waiting for Abdul (the one with the bug eyes, beard and turban) to show him his super nifty dynamite vest as he discusses the contents of the latest Jihad magazine with the officer.

      I thought they did away with those walking stacks of failure last year.

      • Getting rid of what are in essense psychologist police?


        Call them into the office to tell them they’re fired, and you end up with VIPR teams instead. And you feel great about it.

  18. Don’t worry. Those uniformed bag boys couldn’t pass a background check in a Ferrari anyway. They’s HAVE to get a “get out of jail free” card to carry. Even on the job.

  19. Good, many of the blue shirt goons are far to dangerous to possess a gun. The real cops ( or supposedly ) should have been present to stop this but they were to worried about their breaks.

  20. Yes, let’s take the people who are barely (if at all) qualified to gauge the threat level of a sealed water bottle and arm them. Remember these are the people who forget to turn the detectors on a good portion of the time.

  21. Have you seen the average TSA officer? Old, fat, out of shape and no police training what so ever, let alone fire arms training. If you arm the TSA, the training course will have to include Federal police training (average 10 weeks) at one of the federal law enforcement training centers like FLTC in GLYNN County GA. That will make them police officers and that means they would have to be younger under 37 years old to start. On top of that, they would have to qualify every three months like CBP. It will be an administrative freight train waiting to derail. When TSA officer are hired, they qualification standards are low for age, physical fitness and education and most of them could not qualify for a law enforcement job at the federal level. In fact they are seek the position as an entry into the federal employment system. they are not told that carrying weapons are part of the job description because it is not. Want to arm them? fine, but get rid off 75 percent of them and replace them with young, educated and physically fit personnel. Mr. Pistole is right in not wanting to arm his and their Union should not insist. If you are going to inspect people out of the federal area, an armed officer should escort the TSA. What happened in LAX can happen any where to any one and it calls for better procedures not for arming officers that will probably be shot in an incident due to lack of experience or mental attitude.


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