"What's black and white and read all over?"

Thursday, December 01, 2005
Posted 5:42 PM by

Running with scissors

In a file photo sharp objects confiscated at Portland International Airport by the Transportation Safety Administration sit in a large barrel in Salem, Ore., at the state's surplus property warehouse, Thursday, May 30, 2003. Airline passengers will be allowed to carry small scissors and tools onto planes, reversing a rule that led to confiscation of many thousands of sharp objects at airports since the Sept. 11 terror attacks, a Homeland Security Department official said Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2005. (AP Photo/John Gress)Back in first grade, Mrs. Neebe warned us not to run with scissors for fear we might fall and accidentally poke an eye out.

Little did I realize that the federal government would take her place 30 years later and for the exact same reason.

One would think that after Flight 93 was forced down by passengers over Pennsylvania on Sept. 11, 2001, rather than crashed by terrorists into Washington D.C., Todd Beamer's last words, "Let's roll" would still resonate.

Passengers should have been allowed to carry anything short of a sidearm on board with them - anything that would help them feel safer while flying.

But no, the same people who think we should all be allowed to bear machine guns and bazookas on the ground started confiscated cuticle scissors, nail files and lighters from passengers' carryon bags.

I'm guessing those industries aren't major campaign contributors to the Republican Party.

Today, four years later, some sanity has finally started to be restored.

Beginning December 22, scissors with a cutting edge of four inches or less and tools such as screwdrivers, wrenches and pliers smaller than seven inches will be permitted on board, the Transportation Security Administration announced today.

Lighters will still be banned, however, along with smoking, of course.

So, terrorists beware. You may be beaten down by armed, jittery smokers who need their fix.
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