Look, we all know by now that you can’t fly with a gun in your carry-on luggage. In fact, for most of us, we’ve never been able to fly with a gun in our carry-on. Whether we agree with it or not, those are the rules we’re forced to comply with. More importantly, we all know it.
Seriously, people are more surprised to find out that you can fly with a gun in your checked luggage than they are that you can’t have one in your carry-on.
Yet despite that, it seems that even with fewer people flying right now due to COVID-19, TSA is finding more and more guns.
With far fewer people flying because of travel restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic, airport security screeners are naturally finding fewer guns in carry-on baggage.
But the ratio of guns to passengers seeking to board airplanes has jumped sharply.
The Transportation Security Administration said Monday that it found 58 guns at checkpoints from March 22 to April 22, compared with 346 guns over the same stretch last year.
Adjusting for the 95% drop in travelers, that means TSA screeners found one gun for every 80,000 people screened — or 2.7 times the rate of a year ago, when they found one gun for every 216,200 people.
TSA declined to offer an explanation or theory about why the rate of finding guns has gone up this spring.
Jeffrey Price, who teaches aviation security at the Metropolitan State University in Denver, said he thinks there are several reasons behind the higher rate of gun discoveries: a recent spike in gun sales, an “apocalypse mindset” that makes people feel justified carrying a gun on a plane, and shorter TSA lines.
Well, I can’t say for certain that Mr. Price is right, but I don’t know that he’s wrong, either.
Right now, a lot of people are scared. Frankly, I can’t imagine anything more terrifying than being far away from home during an emergency like this. I could understand someone wanting to try and take a gun onto a plane. I’d want a firearm with me as well.
However, while a lot of rules have changed, the TSA is still not letting people keep guns handy while you make your flight.
That doesn’t mean you can’t take a gun with you, though. So long as it’s legal to have a gun at your destination, there are rules in place for transporting firearms. Follow those and you don’t have an issue. Don’t, and TSA gets a new gun for their collection.
Look, I get being worried. Especially since we’re staring down the pipe of still more disasters following COVID-19, plus we’re being told that it’s possibly coming back in the fall. That doesn’t excuse the stupidity being displayed here. Not in the least.
This undermines the “responsible gun owner” argument. Sure, these don’t represent the majority of gun owners by any stretch of the imagination. They’re a tiny minority. I mean, we’re talking about 58 guns in the span of a month throughout the entire nation. It’s not a massive number by any stretch of the imagination.
Yet it’s still too many.