Thursday, August 10, 2006


Another terror plot was foiled this morning - a joint effort between officials the UK and Pakistan. Many believe this was to be another big one involving up to 10 jet airplanes blowing up over the Atlantic en route from Britain to the U.S.

According to initial reports, the would-be bombers (who hail from the UK, but fit the terrorist mold, men of Middle Eastern descent between 17-35) planned to visit the commode in-flight to assemble hand-made explosives with materials snuck onto the plane in carry-on baggage disguised as everyday items like hair gel and hand lotion. Pretty crafty, no?

As as result, reactive airline security has been banning all forms of liquid from boarding, with the exception of prescription medication and baby formula. That seems a little over the top to me, especially when there are other ways to address the threat of in-flight bomb-building.

Security really needs to think outside of the box on this. Instead of holding up air traffic and forcing consumers to dump hundreds of thousands of dollars of products down the drain, why not just close the bathrooms? With no place to assemble their make-shift munitions, the terrorists' evil plans are essentially grounded before they ever get off the to speak.

As for passengers needing to make deposits in-flight, I recommend handing out Depends at the terminal. Each pair has a capacity well in excess of what might be required for a trans-Atlantic flight. So if you gotta go, just go. No worries.

Or hold it.

******* Controversial side-note:

What still kills me - and I always get flak from somebody for statements like this - is that simple profiling would put an end to the security madness. Just like on September 11th, we know exactly what these "evil-doers" look like. They all fit the same fucking profile. Why are we making that 12-year-old Irish girl throw away her saline solution? So that we can say we're being sensitive? Fuck sensitive. I want two lines at the airport - one for people who look like terrorists and one for everyone else. Until 75 year old Asian women start smuggling box cutters onto 767s, I think we'll be okay.

But then that wouldn't FAIR to all of the law-abiding folks who happen to share the same physical characteristics as known terrorists. Hell, that would mean some of my good friends would be forced to go through a separate, more scrutinous security checkpoint before boarding the same plane. So long as they aren't badgered, berated, or harmed in any way, I find that a completely reasonable security measure given our understanding of who these terrorists are. It's all in the interest of promoting safe, convenient air travel for the masses.

I'm so insensitive, I know. Common sense can be cruel sometimes. But I suppose it's politically safer to be politically correct - so let's stop every man, woman, and child in the terminal, strip them completely naked, give them MRIs, CAT Scans, and full cavity searches, shred their luggage with sledgehammers, dump their carry-on items into the trash, and then file them onto the plane like sheep to the shearer. If everyone is naked and there's no luggage to worry about, then we can be completely certain the only threats to passenger safety will be an occasional erection poking someone in the eye.

1 comment:

Sheila K said...

Amen. Have to fly to LAX from PHX today. It's a one hour flight for a two day trip. Normally I would take a carry on and bypass the wacky world of baggage claim. That is still an option IF I don't need my ROLL-ON (liquid) deodorant, sunscreen (I'm the whitest of white girls) and I'm worried, it TOOTHPASTE a liquid/gel???

Now my choice is baggage claim or smelly. At least it's only an hour flight. Imagine that 8 hours to the UK with nothing but the 75 year old Asian lady as your seat mate!?!?!? And you with no pen or paper to write down her ANCIENT CHINESE SECRET for laundry....sigh.

And yet the AOHELL poll of idiots shows that 72% of people do NOT think this is an over-reaction...