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View Diary: Flight attendants and air marshals protest TSA decision allowing small knives on flights (178 comments)

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  •  And you'd have a hell of a time (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    peterfallow, ladybug53

    convincing the flight attendant you were serious about hijacking the plane by brandishing your Swiss army knife.

    While I am sure a trained commando could do a lot of damage with a pocket knife, a trained commando could probably do just as much damage with his bare hands. So its not so much the damage one can inflict, but the intimidation factor, allowing the hijacker to get compliance from crew and passengers.

    Pen knifes just aren't that intimidating. Straight razors? Yeah. Box cutters? Yeah. Surgical scalpels? Yeah. Swiss army knives? Oh, isn't it cute? Is that the one with the saw and the tweezers?

    Let's face it: TSA is security theater, corporate welfare and a jobs program for folks who live near airports. It is the "something" in the phrase "Don't just stand there, do something!" that our public officialdom was confronted with after 9/11. We should be more careful what we wish for.

    "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government are incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

    by Orinoco on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 11:48:42 AM PST

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    •  A sharp 2" blade is a deadly weapon (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Sirenus, Orinoco, arabian

      Even if it has a cute Swiss cross logo.

      I don't think security check are theatre.

      Inconvenient, perhaps, but necessary in these times and accepted around the world.

      I frequently travel by air and cooperate for my own safety. If you are prepared, the inconvenience is minimized.

      What about my Daughter's future?

      by koNko on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 11:36:42 PM PST

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      •  bahhhh...bahhhhh....bahhhh (2+ / 0-)

        sheep are lovely critters.

        Oregon: Sure...it's cold. But it's a damp cold.

        by Keith930 on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 11:40:52 PM PST

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      •  I'd like the "little knives don't count' crowd (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Subterranean, bimbels, arabian

        to imagine being a 5'7' flght attendent bending over to put a glass on a passenger's tray and suddenly she's got a two-inch blade at her throat.

        Sure, the attacker is not going to get into the cockpit. That will be all sorts of comfort to that attendent when she's bleeding out because her throat's been cut. Which you can do with a fully extended box opener. But it's just a flight attendent. Who cares if she, or he, loses an eye or has their check sliced to the bone, or has a bottle opener jammed into their shoulder? Big yawn.  Cheap labor.

        Why does anyone need to bring any knife on board a plane?  Do we now have a knife-rights equivalent of the NRA somewhere defending Americans right to slice people open? What?

        Freedom has two enemies: Those who want to control everyone around them...and those who feel no need to control themselves.

        by Sirenus on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 06:47:50 AM PST

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        •  Little knives don't count (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          happymisanthropy

          but paranoid fantasies do?

          I can't imagine attacking a flight attendant, 5' 7" or not, with my pocket knife. I literally can't imagine it. I've carried that handy tool in my pocket since I was seven years old, and never once in more years than I care to enumerate, have I thought about pulling it out to cut another person with.

          Anyone psychotic enough to imagine such a thing could easily imagine some other way to do their cutting if denied a pocket knife. And none of the current TSA security theater keeps psychotic people off airplanes.  

          Your sig line is interesting: a 5' 7" flight attendant seeking to control everyone around her faced with a psychotic attacker who feels no need to control himself. Freedom loses twice.

          "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government are incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

          by Orinoco on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 07:17:30 AM PST

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          •  How long were the blades on the box cutters? (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            blue drop, KayCeSF, Orinoco, arabian

            Back on 9/11?

            "We refuse to fight in a war started by men who refused to fight in a war." -freewayblogger

            by Bisbonian on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 12:42:58 PM PST

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            •  It's not about the length (0+ / 0-)

              or the damage it can inflict. If someone wants to control someone else, as in a hijacking or other dominance situation, it's about perception.

              That is: is the victim scared enough of the perpetrator that the victim will comply with the perpetrator's demands? It doesn't matter if the perpetrator is a Saudi attempting an aircraft hijacking or a drunk from Deluth trying to get a waitress to give him another scotch.

              As I mentioned earlier, because of what we have absorbed culturally, extremely sharp blades, such as straight razors, box cutters and scalpels, are intimidating when used as weapons. Scalpel blades are, I think, only about 3/4 of an inch long. But if the deranged psychotic in the slasher flick isn't chasing cheerleaders around a deserted mansion with an axe or a machete, he's likely carrying a scalpel or a straight razor. His grandfather's Barlow knife just wouldn't have the same dramatic effect.

              While I don't have any statistics handy, I'd venture to say that the number of assults on flight attendants pre TSA with pocket knives were about on a par with assults by pencil, umbrella and rolled up flight magazines, and were vastly outnumbered by assaults with bare hands.  

              "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government are incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

              by Orinoco on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 04:07:59 PM PST

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          •  I was a flight attendant ... (0+ / 0-)

            I am 5'7...

            I am fairly thin...

            Maybe YOU can't imagine it, but I sure as hell as can.

            We all made this journey for a reason. -- President Barack Obama (February 10, 2007)

            by arabian on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 09:27:38 PM PST

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      •  nobody considered a 1 inch blade to be lethal... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        arabian

        ...but it was and now we have post 9-11 TSA.  will it take a passenger getting harmed by some whacknut for the "no knife" ban to be reinstated?  the ban should stay in place.  there is considerably less threat of me trying to carry ice cubes in a cold pack so i don't have to waste money on pricey, mediocre airport food but that ban remains in place.  stupidity.

        I'm a blue drop in a red bucket.

        by blue drop on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 01:53:16 PM PST

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