×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

TSA Decides Against Allowing Small Knives On Aircraft

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the rally-to-restore-insanity dept.

Transportation 298

New submitter lemur3 writes "After multiple months of discussing possible changes to the prohibited items list, the Transportation Security Administration in the United States has determined that it is best to go ahead without any changes to the list of items passengers may have in their carry-on baggage when traveling by air. Under the proposed change (discussed previously on Slashdot) pocket knives and other items, such as hockey sticks and ski poles, would have been allowed."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

298 comments

Need footage of this! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919135)

Someone, please find and post this footage. Hell, I'd pay money!
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/05/sex-pit-bull-detroit-students_n_3391671.html [huffingtonpost.com]
I know the saying about man's best freind, but this is one brave, brave man.

Assholes... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919141)

Squeeze out whatever good press they can by announcing considering common objects to be allowable on planes...

Quietly decide not to follow through.

There goes another Swiss Army knife (4, Insightful)

cusco (717999) | about a year ago | (#43919155)

I've carried a pocket knife since my dad bought me one for my 8th birthday, not having that weight in that pocket doesn't feel right. Since this foolishness started I've lost at least six to the TSA, since I tend to catch flights too early to be properly awake.. Going on vacation again in a couple of weeks, and I'll probably lose another either on the way there or the way back.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919205)

While i think the TSA sucks bozack.. you'd think after the 2nd or 3rd time you'd learn how to avoid losing things to them

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919437)

When I'm packing to travel, I am figure out what to bring, not what not to bring. It's very easy to forget to not bring something that is with you so much you don't even think about it. Imagine if you weren't allowed to carry your wallet with you. You'd forget. And even if you personally are somehow special (or more likely young) and wouldn't forget, most of us aren't that special.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about a year ago | (#43919687)

I was about to say the same thing... I've traveled many times since 9/11, and have lost precisely nothing to the TSA. I put my pocketknife and lighter in my checked baggage the night before, and carry a spare lighter I can toss once I get to the airport. (I've got a couple of almost empty disposables stashed for just that purpose.) I've never had a problem finding a light at my destination.

The problem isn't the TSA, the problem is the grandparent is an idiot who won't take responsibility for his own actions.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (5, Insightful)

Jockle (2934767) | about a year ago | (#43919709)

The problem isn't the TSA

Just because you've had different experiences doesn't mean the problem isn't the TSA.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (5, Interesting)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#43919769)

"I was about to say the same thing... I've traveled many times since 9/11, and have lost precisely nothing to the TSA."

Wish I could say the same. I have not flown very often in recent years, but the last time I did, a rare and expensive (and perfectly legal) laser was missing from my luggage when I picked it up at my destination. I have little doubt it was stolen by the TSA baggage inspectors. Even if they (wrongly) thought it was illegal, they are required to inform you when they confiscate something. So it wasn't that... it was simply stolen.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919849)

Could also have been the airline baggage handlers.

The best way to "handle" this theft problem is to have windows allowing passengers to see their luggage being searched and see it being handled by the baggage handlers. There is no reason why it needs to be done privately, unless someone is up to no good.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919869)

I don't even trust the baggage handlers. What makes you think I want the public at large to see the contents of my luggage?

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919783)

No the problem can at times be the TSA. Let me illustrate...

Look at the jolt cola can referenced by this link: http://bevwire.wordpress.com/2009/10/01/jolt-cola-soon-to-be-discontinued/ [wordpress.com]

I was at SD West (last one btw), and they were giving out the jolt cola awards, and cans. I managed to get a can, put it into my backpack with my notebook. The next morning, too early (as I was flying to Europe) I forgot the can was in there. So off I go into the search, and they asked "what's this?" I said its cola, and they asked if I wanted to drink it. I said, "na, just throw it away, its too big for me to drink right now".

Well, apparently that was the wrong answer. One agent said "we have never seen this type of can!" I was like, really? Never, apparaently it was a new can design. So off they go and search my entire body and took my entire backpack apart. I was there 45 minutes! It was not funny and of course they found nothing. This was a stupid search and because the TSA had never seen one of their products from their own country I was dodgy! Come on people!

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (5, Insightful)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | about a year ago | (#43919923)

The problem isn't the TSA

The problem isn't the TSA either way. The TSA realizes that the restrictions on small knives and tools are silly and a waste of resources. They wanted to make the change. But they got too much push back from politicians and "think of the children" citizens. So they caved in.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (4, Insightful)

mosb1000 (710161) | about a year ago | (#43920043)

The problem isn't the TSA

That's the stupidest thing I've read on /. today. Of course the TSA is the problem. Taking peoples pocket knives is a pointless knee-jerk reaction.

the problem is the grandparent is an idiot who won't take responsibility for his own actions.

That's a pretty big problem too, but then no one said there was only one problem.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919823)

you misspelled Barack

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (3, Interesting)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#43919255)

I always carry a Leatherman Micra. I lost one once, and managed to buy a whole bag of them from those confiscated from an airport. At least one (given to someone) has returned to where it came from.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (2)

Etherwalk (681268) | about a year ago | (#43919331)

They should just charge a $5 fee and mail it to you if you don't want it destroyed.

It is kind of silly, though. Post 911, nobody can take over a plane with a few knives. The only reason to not allow them is that they can result in more injuries on a plane, but that seems so unlikely as to not be terribly persuasive.

I once walked into a secure federal building with a knife by accident; the guards thought about it and then didn't care. Which is really the right result.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919381)

They should just charge a $5 fee and mail it to you if you don't want it destroyed.

Most major airports have kiosks for explicitly this purpose.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#43919467)

They should just charge a $5 fee and mail it to you if you don't want it destroyed.

Most major airports have kiosks for explicitly this purpose.

Which ones? I've never seen one.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (4, Informative)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#43919635)

They should just charge a $5 fee and mail it to you if you don't want it destroyed.

Most major airports have kiosks for explicitly this purpose.

Which ones? I've never seen one.

Here's a list of airports for one company's checkpoint mailers, there are probably other companies that do the same thing in other airports:

http://www.airportmailers.com/airportlist.php [airportmailers.com]

There was a company called ReturnKey that did the same thing (I linked to an Engadget article that mentions them in another post), but their domain is dead, so they seem to have gone out of business.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | about a year ago | (#43919717)

I've seen one just recently added to Portland International (PDX) DE gates security. I assume ABC has one, too.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#43919385)

They should just charge a $5 fee and mail it to you if you don't want it destroyed.

It is kind of silly, though. Post 911, nobody can take over a plane with a few knives. The only reason to not allow them is that they can result in more injuries on a plane, but that seems so unlikely as to not be terribly persuasive.

I once walked into a secure federal building with a knife by accident; the guards thought about it and then didn't care. Which is really the right result.

I've seen self-service mail kiosks in some airports where you can mail your prohibited items to yourself. You still would have to get back out of the security line to get back to the Kiosk, but if you have something valuable it's probably worth it. So far I've only lost 99 cent nail clippers but I think those are allowed now.

http://www.engadget.com/2005/05/04/airport-kiosks-let-travelers-mail-off-limits-items/ [engadget.com]

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919435)

I've flown at least once in the past year with a leatherman knockoff in my carry-on. It was completely by accident and didn't notice it was in my bag until I was unpacking at home after the trip.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (4, Insightful)

jcr (53032) | about a year ago | (#43919753)

Post 911, nobody can take over a plane with a few knives.

Post 9/11, nobody's ever going to take over a plane again, period. Someone might be able to destroy one, but the days of "just do what the bad man says" are over.

-jcr

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919891)

I carry a priority envelope for mailing anything to myself I forgot to take it out of my pocket or suitcase. I almost lost a tiny pen knife once, so started packing this lightweight solution.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

Richy_T (111409) | about a year ago | (#43919981)

I left my laptop at security last time I flew. $70 to have it shipped including $28 for the stupid UPS box.

Yeah, avoid doing that if you can help it. (TSA guy stacked the boxes when they random searched me and it is a thin Chromebook)

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#43919501)

Nothing like getting to where you are flying and by reflex reaching for that Swiss Army Knife I always carry, because something needs a little tweak.

But by all means, let's continue to behave like a bunch of frightened lemmings.

this also ends my plans for Ackthpt's Small Knives And Pointy Objects Emporium in airports from coast to coast.

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (3, Insightful)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year ago | (#43919541)

this also ends my plans for Ackthpt's Small Knives And Pointy Objects Emporium in airports from coast to coast.

Yeah, now you know why the TSA rescinded the order - they didn't want you to compete with their current side business [gizmodo.com] selling pocket knives. (I think my uncle bought a box of corkscrews by the pound).

Re:There goes another Swiss Army knife (1)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | about a year ago | (#43919661)

Nothing like getting to where you are flying and by reflex reaching for that Swiss Army Knife I always carry, because something needs a little tweak.

As idiotic as the rule is, you can still put your SAK in your checked baggage, and so reload it at your destination. (Even though the airlines are working hard to make checking bags expensive and difficult.)

Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

slasher999 (513533) | about a year ago | (#43919203)

Besides the horrible service and the conditions (ie personal space mostly) on aircraft today, they continue with these absurd bans on common items. I never leave home without a knife, many times a SAK, other times a Spyderco or Queen. To me that would be like leaving home without pants. You just don't think about it, you just do it. When I do need to fly I'm very much aware that I'm without my knife or even the P-38 I keep on my keychain (I'm sure they would figure out how to take that away as well).

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919221)

You keep an airplane on your keychain??!!?? Got me beat. If the knife doesn't work, just strafe 'em.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (5, Funny)

Intropy (2009018) | about a year ago | (#43919239)

I had to look that up to figure out why you were trying to take a P-38 Lightning through TSA.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

slasher999 (513533) | about a year ago | (#43919433)

I was curious which people would think I meant - the plane or the gun! Nope, just the can opener. But try to explain that to TSA.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

Intropy (2009018) | about a year ago | (#43919587)

Well, if I'm being honest, I assumed you didn't mean the plane and that P-38 must also refer be something small, like a pocket knife. I looked it up and found it was a can opener. I am deeply ashamed that I ever implied that I thought you might actually be carrying around a WW2-era fighter.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

ninlilizi (2759613) | about a year ago | (#43919937)

Sup Dawg. I heard you like planes. So I put a plane in your plane, so you can fly while you fly.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

timmyf2371 (586051) | about a year ago | (#43919373)

Are conditions really bad enough to stop people flying? Admittedly, I have little experience of flying within the US (although I am returning from SFO to LHR in three weeks so I will get to experience things first hand).

When I fly from the UK (domestic & international), I'm used to turning up no more than 60 mins before the flight leaves - even if I have hold baggage and don't have fast track security. I'm not going to pretend economy seats are the height of luxury, but in general I try to get the front row or an emergency exit seat so I get a bit more legroom and the person in front can't recline. And it's hardly any worse than my morning & evening commute by train - I even get to sit down on the plane.

Is the US airport/flying experience so terrible? Any particular tips I should consider for my flight out of SFO?

On the subject of the article, I'm inclined to agree with this decision. If you need a pocket knife at your destination, check it in the hold. Do you really need it on the plane? Of course, I'm quite happy to admit that there are plenty of other ways to do damage to someone using permitted items - I reckon you could do far more damage with an aerosol deodorant and cigarette lighter.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#43919489)

Are conditions really bad enough to stop people flying?

Um, yes.

I used to fly for fun: when I lived near London I'd fly to New York for a long weekend, for example. But now I only fly when I have to, entirely because of the security theater and its insane and randomly varying rules.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

slasher999 (513533) | about a year ago | (#43919493)

They really are for various reasons, but I'll say space is my biggest gripe. I had to fly earlier this year - first time in two years. My first leg actually wasn't bad. I'm 6'3" and I go about 350 lbs, so I'm a big guy. I was in the middle seat on a newer United 757 and was relatively comfortable with guys on either side of me. Don't get me wrong, it was cozy but it was tolerable. My return trip however was horrible and I even had an aisle seat with no one in the middle seat next to me. This was an older Continental 737 and was much smaller, even though I paid for "extra leg room". I can't imagine what I would have done if that hadn't been an option. This was a red eye flight (seven hours) and I think I slept for about five minutes total. I woke up almost immediately because I was literally toppling out of the seat into the aisle. If not for my seat belt I would have certainly been on the floor in the aisle. If I had to pay for that flight, well I wouldn't have. Since my employer paid for the base airfare (I only paid the extra leg room part) I took it since I really wanted to attend the conference. Really I should have drove even if I had to take a week off for the drive.

Re: Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Mabhatter (126906) | about a year ago | (#43919563)

The US travel experience isn't terrible. The problem is that its treated with crazy different rules than any other mass transit.

I have not had problems... BUT... I try to travel in comfortable clothes, and remember to empty metal items into my carry-on bag ahead of time, take off your belt before getting in line, untie your shoes do you don't slow things up, remember to pack the laptop and iPad do they easily unpack and repackage quickly, and keep cords wound up in a separate container, have all that ready the nite before you go to the airport and you will sail through the line!

Re: Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

starless (60879) | about a year ago | (#43919681)

With "TSA-Pre" (which you can get e.g. by signing up for global entry) you can avoid many of
these inconveniences. e.g. you can keep shoes on, keep computer inside bag, keep liquids in bag.
Global entry has other major advantages for international travelers (avoid immigration lines).
http://www.globalentry.gov/ [globalentry.gov]

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919585)

Are conditions really bad enough to stop people flying?

Only on /.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Jockle (2934767) | about a year ago | (#43919741)

I would think rights are important to more people than just Slashdot readers. Is this not the case, or are most people imbeciles, as I often fear?

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

Jockle (2934767) | about a year ago | (#43919731)

Are conditions really bad enough to stop people flying?

People's rights are violated when they try to get on a plane. What do you think the answer is?

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Richy_T (111409) | about a year ago | (#43920057)

It depends on your definition of bad. It's bad enough and annoying but usually not awful. If you fly into the US, avoid any contact with Atlanta airport.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Platinumrat (1166135) | about a year ago | (#43919475)

Well in most Australian states, it's now illegal to carry even a small Swiss Army style keychain knife anywhere, Period.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#43919525)

Well in most Australian states, it's now illegal to carry even a small Swiss Army style keychain knife anywhere, Period.

Well, that's Crocodile Dundee fscked then.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

slasher999 (513533) | about a year ago | (#43919559)

That really blows my mind. I couldn't imagine going around without mine, and I have many to pick from. It's just so handy to have. Car breaks down? Knives come in handy in many ways there. Pet get caught up on your walk and you need to cut a piece of string, rope, etc to free them (this has happened to me)? You need your knife. Open a box? Much easier with a small pocket knife. Bored? We were taught "whittling" in scouts as recently as 30 years ago. I can understand restrictions on switch blades and very large knives (like over 5" blade or over 10" overall) but everyone should be able to carry at least a Small Stockman, which is a small knife with three different blades that does not lock - a "slippie" as we call them, referring to their being of the "slip-joint" variety as opposed to locking, auto opening, fixed blade, etc.

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (1)

Dahamma (304068) | about a year ago | (#43919625)

Which is funny considering Paul Hogan managed to convince the rest of the world Australians all walked around with 12" bush knives stuffed down their pants ;)

Re:Another reason I no longer fly. (2)

Richy_T (111409) | about a year ago | (#43920099)

He convinced me they hang bread on walls and use a blowtorch to make toast.

No surprise really (4, Insightful)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year ago | (#43919209)

If they allowed knives back on, and any kind of terrorist attack occurred with knives, then someone would be held responsible for that decision, no matter how wise it seemed at the time. If they disallow knives, people will kick and scream, but won't actually change their flying behavior much, and everyone's job will be safe.

Re:No surprise really (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | about a year ago | (#43919223)

I'll take responsibility for it. It will have about as much effect as trying to pin the responsibility for the decision on any government official.

Re:No surprise really (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about a year ago | (#43919335)

If they allowed knives back on, and any kind of terrorist attack occurred with knives, then someone would be held responsible for that decision, no matter how wise it seemed at the time.

If they allowed little knives on planes, and someone was foolish enough to try to hijack the plane with one, they would arrive at the next airport as a pile of thinly sliced pieces.

IMO they should allow anything that won't endanger the integrity of the cabin.

Re:No surprise really (3, Insightful)

Jockle (2934767) | about a year ago | (#43919667)

IMO they should allow anything that won't endanger the integrity of the cabin.

Actually, the TSA should just be eliminated outright. Problem solved.

Re:No surprise really (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919921)

Exactly! We should all be able to carry a pocket knife on board because they're not dangerous, but if someone tried to hijack the plane then they would become dangerous and suddenly capable of turning a mission-oriented terrorist with a weapon into "a pile of thinly sliced pieces".

Terrorism aside, do I really want some drunken asshole who's been on a plane for the past 6 hours having any kind of knife? Flying can be stressful and the fewer ways there are for some stressed out, pissed up prick to kill another person, the better.

Thirdly, your "anything that won't endanger the integrity of the cabin" schtick is great, but why? Do you really need a hockey stick on a plane? Gonna practice your slapshots up and down the aisle are ya? Or a pocket knife? Really? Gonna whittle a whistle outta some nice hickory? Awesome. Or maybe, just maybe, you don't really need to take those things into the cabin with you...

Re:No surprise really (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#43919443)

If they allowed knives back on, and any kind of terrorist attack occurred with knives, then someone would be held responsible for that decision, no matter how wise it seemed at the time. If they disallow knives, people will kick and scream, but won't actually change their flying behavior much, and everyone's job will be safe.

Be serious - TSA is a government agency, there's no such thing as holding someone accountable.

Re:No surprise really (2)

Jockle (2934767) | about a year ago | (#43919657)

Why don't imbeciles just realize that sometimes bad things happen, and freedom is more important than safety? The TSA needs to be destroyed.

Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy ... (5, Insightful)

pissoncutler (66050) | about a year ago | (#43919219)

Instead of making folks discard completely non-threatening items, TSA should look into *actual* security.

The airport should have a series of series of checkpoints. Every vehicle that pulls onto the property goes past a guard that asks you how your day is going (screen #1). At the ticket counter, a friendly agent asks if you are enjoying the weather (screen #2). Drop off your bags, some other random, friendly question (screen #3). Lastly, at the x-ray / metal detector / body scanner, the attending agent looks you in the eye and chats with you again (screen #4). Every station should be manned by trained security personel empowered to flag you for greater scrutiny. Add to that randomized patrols and searches.

The staged checkpoints also reduce the likelihood of an attacker targeting that massive line to get through security. (In the TSA system, no one waiting in that line has been through any prior screen.)

Stagger the checks and ensure redundancy. It's not cheap, it would require TSA to hire/pay much better than they do now, but it would get you better security. Banning Swiss Army Knives and hockey sticks doesn't make anyone safer.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919337)

Or live with the tiny tiny risk that there will be a terrorist attack on your plane and keep the doors locked, which means they cant take over the plane, at most they can kill everybody on board. Which is of course a bad thing, but its more likely that the plane will simply crash and kill everybody than that a terrorist inside would kill everybody.
A metal scanner really is all you need in most cases.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

pissoncutler (66050) | about a year ago | (#43919429)

I agree, but what we have now is both a sham and an inconvenience. Real security isn't an absolute, and it's the inverse of convenience.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919745)

So what happens when the body of the plane is taken over and the pilot is told that if he doesn't let the hijackers into the cabin they'll kill every passanger slowly and in the most possibly painful manner?

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (2)

aXis100 (690904) | about a year ago | (#43919843)

The pilot radios the nearest airport, lands, and the SWAT team takes over?

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

White Flame (1074973) | about a year ago | (#43919391)

Every station should be manned by trained security personel empowered to flag you for greater scrutiny.

The TSA seems to love spending money on everything but actually training their personnel to be properly security-conscious and informed. Having some of the lowest entry requirements relative to pay scale of any job in the country doesn't help either.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a year ago | (#43919407)

What you are describing is exactly what you get when you fly out of Ben Gurion. However, in spite of the success of the Israeli approach to airport security, it may not scale to the huge flight volumes of, say, Atlanta or LAX, and regrettably the TSA wants the same approach at all airports.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#43919507)

How many terrorists have the Israelis caught at airports?

I don't mean that as a rhetorical question, but I don't remember them doing so any time in the last couple of decades.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a year ago | (#43919611)

There have bene high-profile busts like the Hindawi affair [wikipedia.org], and after that, the rigorous screening in place does a pretty good job of discouraging anyone from attacking flights to/from Israel.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (1)

CRCulver (715279) | about a year ago | (#43919637)

I forgot to mention that screening on flights to Israel has also succeeded in preventing the boarding of actists who, though they would not attack the plane, would cause damage once they've landed in Israel. That is, the screening is also designed to stop activists who, though they themselves refrain from engaging in violence, want to go to the West Bank to agitate for violent Palestinian resistance.

Re: Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy . (2)

Mabhatter (126906) | about a year ago | (#43919519)

It's the "Disney" approach. If you go to Disney, they break up the long lines with spaces, corridors, and choke points. Disney does this so it doesn't appear you are in a crazy long line for teacups. But it would work for security too.

Then you insert various detectors along the moving sidewalks and other places in the airport where "single file" lines naturally occur. The biggest thing is to have lots of "helper" agents in the middle looking with eyeballs.

The problem is that our airports were built like shopping malls, intended to be a destination to pickup/ drop off people and have dinner, etc. they have few "compartments" to their designs for the passenger spaces.

Re:Whew! TSA flew much too close to sane policy .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919549)

Honestly, that's such a load of crap I'd sooner advocate for everyone flying naked.

Hijacking airplanes is done. Any attempt will result in dead hijackers and maybe some other injuries or deaths. Worst case scenario, 20 hijackers make it onto a more or less empty flight, overpower or slay the other passengers, somehow get into the cockpit before the pilot can crash or land the plane... the military blows it out of the sky. 9/11 isn't happening again during the lifetime of anyone old enough to remember it.

Are the TSA lines themselves a target? Possibly. Probably more so for disgruntled home-grown terrorists than the kind that managed 9/11. But your system doesn't really fix that. It just pushes it outside of the airport. People will still be sitting ducks in their cars. Protects a little better against bombs, sure, but remember the beltway snipers? Ten guys with sniper rifles could kill a lot of people and they don't even have to die (and maybe not even get caught for awhile - allowing them to kill some more).

No. We already have "actual" security. It's the lock on the cockpit door. It's the breaking up of groups like Al Qaeda.

What we need at the airports is screening done by the airlines. Make them liable for any fuck ups and they'll find a good balance between inconvenience and security or they'll go out of business (if we let them - can't bail them out, damn it).

Liquids? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919243)

Not just pocket knives, they're saying no changes, which means no changes to liquids either. I wonder how much the airlines make on $7 liquor and beer and how much the airport merchants make on $4 sodas and if that has anything to do with it.

Truck driver (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919267)

I used to fly constantly to transfer trucks of all kinds and before 911, I always had a very large lock blade on my belt at all times, including when flying. Now that I can't carry it for personal protection, I am no longer flying.

Don't relax the security sphincter now! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919279)

If folks start feeling safe again it will only make it harder to impose new regulations in the future.

Besides, why give up ground already gained?

Why did I lose my rights? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919305)

I was in an airport with a souvenir I got over vacation. I accidentally forgot I placed it in my bag and tried to go through security. Why is it that my proximity to the gate suddenly stripped me of my rights? A police officer came to "contain" the situation, although he didn't do much because I wasn't making a fuss. Why wasn't I ever asked to just walk away with all my belongings? I was at the airport 2 hours before my flight was scheduled to depart, that is plenty of time to go back to the front desk and check my bag. Why is it that I was stripped of my rights to my belongings and denied the ability to take what I came with and leave. Granted I attempted to go through security with an item, so my name was put on an ever growing list of potential terrorists. Fine. But why don't they change fucked up policies like these before allowing knives on a plane? Most airports even have built in shipping offices, I could have just mailed the souvenir to my home address, but I was never given the chance.

My CarryOn-Jutsu is Stronger than Yours (4, Funny)

decipher_saint (72686) | about a year ago | (#43919311)

"Sir please remove your arms and legs, you can't take them on the plane"

Re:My CarryOn-Jutsu is Stronger than Yours (2)

RussR42 (779993) | about a year ago | (#43919473)

Oh, oh, I see! Running away, eh? You yellow bastards! Come back here and take what's coming to you! I'll bite your legs off!

Obama (2)

SnarfQuest (469614) | about a year ago | (#43919319)

Obama recently stated that the War on Terror was over, since we killed Al-Qaeda's .leaders, and that the terrorist threat was over. Since the TSA, and Homeland Security, are designed to protect us from terrorists, are they needed any more?

Just a test (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919329)

To see if the public was alienated enough aleady to protest against a bit of reasonable liberty.

X-actly (5, Interesting)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about a year ago | (#43919343)

Well, hockey sticks and the other stuff should be fine. Actually small knives would be, too.

Prior to 9/11, the policy for a skyjacking was sit tight and wait for ransom demands, or to fly some idiot to Cuba.

That morning it changed forever. Passengers will revolt. Pilots will bounce people around in the cabin. Threats to kill people will correctly go unheeded and the cockpit door will stay closed. Even flights with insufficient other passengers still won't lose control.

So...so what about small knives and X-acto box cutters? Such a takeover will never work again.

Re:X-actly (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919527)

I hate to tell you how embarrassingly pathetic most Americans are these days. Haven't you heard the stories of some guy shooting up the place and every one just sits there watching him reload before executing the more of them? We're all taught not to defend ourselves against any thing, not to violent psychos killing us or the psychos stripping rights and dignity. Just turn in your weapons/rights and hope some one will help you.

Sudden outbreak (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919345)

Yeah, let's tackle all kinds of imaginary goblins while allowing the very tool used by the actual goblins back in. Even the TSA wasn't crazy enough to let on something that was similar to what was actually used. Although I understand they weren't actually going to allow boxcutters, what is that but a small blade? Oh, and the bit about it having to be a singing blade not fixed... like they couldn't carry something else that allowed the blade to be fixed.

This is just crazy. Next thing you know, they'll be analyzing the actual security weaknesses that were exploited on 9-11-2001 and plugging them. Nahhh.... that's crazy talk.

OK, TSA, please tell me why... (5, Interesting)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#43919355)

why do restaurants after security at Chicago O'Hare give customers metal knives, while restaurants at DFW do not?

And in the past, I have been given a metal knife when flying in first class (obviously, first class passengers cannot be terrorists!)

Do TSA rules ban equipment to sharpen metal dinner knives? I doubt it.

Re:OK, TSA, please tell me why... (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | about a year ago | (#43919595)

And in the past, I have been given a metal knife when flying in first class (obviously, first class passengers cannot be terrorists!)

First, I'm kind of curious when this happened? I haven't flown in a sufficiently high class since 9/11, but I remember when airlines used to give you hot food. I don't know if they still do or not--it may depend on how far you're going and which airline you're using.

That said, first class passengers are not terrorists because terrorists are frugal. Remember the guys who tried to blow up the World Trade Center using a truck bomb and then went back for the deposit on the tuck? And none of the 9/11 Terrorists flew first class because why spend the extra money if you're going to crash or blow up the plane?

Re:OK, TSA, please tell me why... (1)

aXis100 (690904) | about a year ago | (#43919893)

Even business class will give you metal knives and real glassware.

Not that it matters, the plastic knives they give the cattle class can still do plenty of damage, I'm sure you could make a real mess of someone's throat with one.

Farking security theatre.

Re:OK, TSA, please tell me why... (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#43920049)

First, I'm kind of curious when this happened?

About 4 or 5 years ago, definitely after 9/11. I think that the last time I flew in domestic first class on American, they gave me plastic knives, but I dont remember clearly.

And none of the 9/11 Terrorists flew first class because why spend the extra money if you're going to crash or blow up the plane?

They would fly first if it were essential to their plans.

Re:OK, TSA, please tell me why... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43920019)

Not to mention that the entire service and food delivery staff and equipment don't even use the lines checked by TSA. That metal bagel cart isn't going through X-Ray or bodyscanners, or even a metal detector. The tarmac security is *completely* different from the "front door" security. You just need a badge to swipe in to enter the tarmac, and the badge swipes in again to open the service entrance of the airport, and you can haul in your giant metal bagel booth with whatever you want inside. The thing is, the airports see vendors as their bosses, because vendors pay the airport for floor space, and they will do anything that puts in jeopardy that revenue stream. By contrast, passengers pay the airlines not the airport, so the airport couldn't give two rats asses about the happiness of passengers.

Bad Idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919411)

It is a given that bad guys can sneak knives onboard without much trouble. Therefore it would be a benefit if the law abiding public had at least a fighting chance against them.

Security theater... (1)

Darkness404 (1287218) | about a year ago | (#43919471)

Security theater at its finest. The reason why there hasn't been 9/11 part II is not because of the TSA, instead its been because prior to 9/11 whenever an airplane was hijacked, the standard procedure was to keep a low profile, wait until your plane landed and the hijacker to make their demands and try not to piss off the hijacker, then the feds will storm the plane and light up the hijacker in a hail of bullets and so long as you kept a low profile you'd make it out alive. Today though, everyone associates hijacking with 9/11 and so people are going to be much more willing to fight when they think that their alternative isn't landing in Cuba but instead running into a skyscraper.

Instead, all the TSA has done is make ordinary passengers feel like criminals, damage the profitability of airlines and generally make it a pain to fly in US airspace.

145 idiotic House members (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919569)

I just want to know exactly who those 145 idiots [wzzm13.com] are.

The terrorists won ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919695)

... again.

Oh well (1)

darkfeline (1890882) | about a year ago | (#43919827)

There goes my knife. And my pen. And my glasses. And my belt. And my teeth. And my finger- and toenails. It's been said many, many times, but sooner or later perhaps the TSA will realize that people are potential security risks and ban everyone altogether.

On a less ranting and more constructive note, when were small knives banned? I recall back in the day of airport security small knives with blades less than, oh, I don't know, six inches? were allowed.

yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919861)

Bic pens, which can be just as lethal if you really are determined to hurt someone, are fine.

You got a vote, so stop complaining (1)

Kohath (38547) | about a year ago | (#43919897)

It's OK for the government to take away your freedom. Because you got a vote. Slashdot commenters say so.

If the government weren't oppressing you, then some corporation running the airlines might enact a reasonable policy instead, without consulting you at all. This way, you got a vote. See how great that worked out? You all remember voting for the TSA, right?

To anyone who's complaining about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43919941)

Why is carrying a knife on your person on a flight so damn important? Can you not go without whittling for the length of your flight?

Misssing the point. (2)

westlake (615356) | about a year ago | (#43919979)

What worries the stewardess is the out-if-control passenger with a knife.

The flight crew may be safe behind their armored door.

But she is out there, utterly exposed --- and you are wedged in your seat five rows back and in no position to help her.

The TSA weaved and bobbed around answering the question of how many casualties it was prepared to accept in an incident like this --- and that in the end was fatal.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...