When news broke that the TSA had decided to stop stealing people’s pocket-knives, I was more than a little happy. Because over the past few years, I’d lost four — count them, FOUR — pocket-knives to sharp-eyed TSA officers bent on thwarting well-groomed fingernails.
Happily, I thought sanity was prevailing on this vitally important issue. As recently as March, the TSA blog said:
Small knives with non-locking blades smaller than 2.36 inches and less than 1/2 inch in width will be permitted.
Their reasoning was that it freed up Transportation Security Officers to focus efforts on finding higher threat items such as explosives. Or maybe really dangerous stuff like this that you can build with common items you can buy after you’re past security.
But now it seems that TSA administrator, John Pistole, has reversed his commonsense notion to stop screening for tiny pocket-knives after an Inspector General’s report questioned the effectiveness of his new approach: racial profiling…sorry, I meant “behavior-detection.”
Look, John, I didn’t complain when you made us take our shoes off or buy tiny bottles of shampoo and hair gel (even you’re fighting old tactics). And I didn’t say anything when made me put my laptop in a separate bin for some unknowable reason. But the whole pocket-knife thing is just pointless (pun intended). You as much admitted that tiny knives are safe by clearing them back in March.
So, while I appreciate and applaud your desire to keep airplanes safe, please stick to your guns on the pocket-knife screening issue.
I, and my horribly dry cuticles, will thank you.