The ongoing hooraw over the decision to allow passengers to carry their bitty little pen knives onto airplanes is positively appalling.
The Flight Attendants' union is still pitching a conniption over allowing more "deadly weapons" on planes. An NBC reporter
was interviewing people at the airport yesterday morning, and the bedwettery of
the "Man (for lack of a more apropos term) On The Street" was actually
painful to watch. I found myself yelling "Oh, harden the **** up!" at the screen.
The only knives I currently own that fall under these criteria are
attached to keychain-size multitools and are less useful as weapons
than, say, my belt. Assuming arguendo that the vital ingredient of a person with hostile intent is present, you're in more danger from the plastic shank they give you with your food in first class or an improvised shiv made from the complementary beverage can than you are from the 2" non-locking blade on a Victorinox key fob.
I can't get over the amount of hand-wringing
accompanying this. When I first heard the news, my ears perked up,
thinking that my Spyderco Dodo or CRKT Urban Shark would be accompanying
me aloft, but no. Imagine my chagrin. At least I'll be able to keep my keychain
in my carry-on rather than having to check it throu... no, wait, I guess
they'll probably still lose continence over the monkey fist.
While I'm amazed at the puling and cringing that goes on at the sight of a penknife, I guess I shouldn't be; as far back as twenty years ago, I've had a roomful of Americanus cubiculanus suburbia shrink back, eyes all askance, as I pulled out a tiny, money-clip-sized CRKT K.I.S.S. to open a box. (The irony there is that I started carrying the K.I.S.S. because the Spyderco Snap-It I had previously carried clipped to a belt loop had a propensity to spook the straights in an office environment.)
At this rate I expect solid evidence of h. sapiens' eyes migrating towards the sides of the cranium over the next few generations.
EDIT: Jesus, they've got a Flight Attendents' union rep on the Today show right now, and she and Matt Lauer are emoting and quivering in two-part harmony over the sight of the kind of thing I keep on my keychain. Matt asks... well, he doesn't ask so much as he Oprahs; I half expected him to reach out and rest a comforting hand on her knee... "The TSA says they want to let the screeners focus on finding explosives, things that could actually bring down an airliner. Does that make any sense to you?"
As Shiva is my witness, she responded with "No. I'm a flight attendant; I'm out in the cabin. I'm a first responder and the last line of defense..."
...and she said something else, too, but I couldn't hear it over me yelling "No, honey, you're a waitress in a bad restaurant at 28,000 feet!" at the screen.