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Air marshals and flight attendants are not happy about the TSA's decision to allow small knives onto airplanes. The decision covers knives with blades no longer than 2.36 inches and no wider than 1/2 inch, which do not lock and do not have a fixed grip. In addition to pocketknives, that would cover things like the blades on corkscrews. While these knives are smaller than what was allowed at the time of the 9/11 attacks, the flight attendants union and the air marshals association objected strongly:
"It's as if we didn't learn anything from 9/11," said George Randall Taylor, head of the air marshal unit of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA). "Flight attendants are going to be sitting ducks."
The flight attendants cite not just 9/11 but more regular challenges:
Sara Nelson, vice president of the Association of Flight Attendants, says they have to deal with "unruly passengers every day." She says flight attendants are an aircraft's "last line of defense," and says the new rule puts them "in a much more dangerous position."
Security experts say the changes are appropriate, and the items now allowed were already recommended to be allowed under non-binding standards from the U.N.'s International Civil Aviation Organization.

In addition to the small knives, passengers will be allowed to carry a range of sports equipment, including novelty baseball bats, billiard cues, ski poles, and up to two golf clubs. Bottles of shampoo or lotion larger than three ounces will still be prohibited.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 09:01 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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