The Last Word: Airport Security

staff_editorial

System works the way it is

By Ashley Steeb

I hate flying in airplanes.

I simply do not like the idea of a large hunk of metal floating that high off the ground.

And no, my strong aversion has nothing to do with the controversial security procedures at airports. In fact, the Transportation Security Administration is doing its job well enough to keep travelers safe. 

But I do understand the procedures can be a hassle, but remember they are in place for a reason. 

Airport security has drastically changed since the tragedy on Sept. 11, 2001. This horrific event and others that have occurred in recent years prove we need strict airport security.

The procedures are not perfect. Security officials cannot catch everything, but if the procedures are even tougher, people are bound to complain.

Travelers already complain that security procedures currently in place are too intrusive, and viral videos are bringing these accusations to life. 

Most recently, an irate mother of a 13-year-old Texas boy shared a video on Facebook of her son going through a thorough pat-down at an airport TSA checkpoint after an alarm on his laptop went off in security. The video shows what some people are calling a “more-than-thorough” pat down of the boy.

The father of a ten-year-old girl posted a similar video of a security guard patting his daughter down for longer than necessary.

These situations are unnecessary considering they involve innocent children. For the most part, however, pat downs are an essential part of ensuring the safety of travelers.

Airport security may change once again under the administration of President Donald Trump. Programs the administration considers wasteful may be cut to save money. 

But although these programs may not be perfect, they are doing their part in reducing the number of terrorists who attempt to hijack planes or bomb airports.

The procedures are annoying and time-consuming, but they’re saving lives every day. Travelers need to keep one question in mind: Do I prefer convenience or safety?


Ramp up security, save lives

By Shelby Mullis

Millions of people fly around the world every year.

While the Transportation Security Administration, better known as the TSA, has improved security efforts over the last 15 years since 9/11 occurred, there is still room for security procedures to be improved.

In 2013, a shooting incident left one TSA officer dead and several other injured.

Earlier this year, a gunman opened fire in the Fort Lauderdale airport baggage claim, killing five people and injuring six. These tragic events could have been prevented.

Last month, I visited the Louisville Airport. Similar to most airports across the country, visitors must pass through security before they can go any further. But think about the area where hundreds of people congregate with no screening or checkpoint in order to enter.

With no strict security prior to entering the airport, anyone can do anything. Unfortunately, this is the world we live in — where anything could happen at any time at any place. Anything.

So how could tragedies like the one that occurred at the Fort Lauderdale be prevented?

One way is to add security at the entrance of the airport, in the baggage claim and ticket counters, making airports tougher to enter. 

Another way is to add more armed officers throughout airports. A consistent, visible presence of these uniformed, armed officers could aid safety efforts in these public areas. By recognizing certain behaviors of a person who may be preparing to carry out an attack, these officers could react quickly. 

Although I applaud the TSA for their continued efforts to keep all people safe, that is not to say our nation’s airports could not do better. While not every situation can be prevented, any improvements could save a number of lives each year from these horrific tragedies.


SECURITY ADMINISTRATION STATISTICS 

  • More than 708 MILLION passengers screened by TSA
  • 2,653 firearms intercepted from carry-on bags
  • 82% of firearms intercepted were loaded
  • 44% of passengers screened received some type of EXPEDITED SCREENING 
  • 236 airports intercepted firearms
  • More than 432 MILLION checked bags + more than 1.6 BILLION carry-on bags screened

source www.tsa.gov

About The Franklin staff 56 Articles
The Franklin is the student newspaper at Franklin College in Franklin, Indiana. We publish depth campus news weekly.

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