TSA nitwittery, media hype in Anchorage

Psst, Homeland Security Honchos: The thing to do is to find actual terrorists, not to find oil field workers’ on-the-job items and call them bombs.

There’s a story out today with a highly misleading headline: “Explosive found in carry-on bag at Anchorage airport.” Steve Quinn of Reuters writes about the “possible threat item” detected as a passenger’s carry-on bag was being screened at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport on Sunday:

Security agents at Alaska’s largest commercial airport closed the lone security checkpoint for nearly two hours on Sunday after discovering an oil field worker packing an explosive device.

The “possible threat item” was detected as the passenger’s carry-on bag was being screened at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport on Sunday afternoon, said Ann Davis, a Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman.

The device appeared to be a pipe bomb and the passenger told authorities it was a device used to trigger avalanches, said Airport Manager John Parrott.

The checkpoint area was evacuated and the city’s explosive ordinance [sic] team took the device to a remote area for disposal, officials said.

The passenger had a ticket to fly on Shared Services Aviation, a joint service between energy companies ConocoPhillips and BP, which transports employees and contractors.

Both firms are oilfield operators on Alaska’s oil-rich North Slope.

I know many people who own guns. Not one of them has murdered anybody. They are not murderers but people who want to protect themselves and their families and people who hunt.

What would be meaningful security in this country would be the Constitutional kind — to use probable cause, by trained intelligence agents, to find people plotting terrorist acts, and to find them long before they hit the mall or the airport or the Boston Marathon.

You don’t stop terrorism by taking away some law-abiding citizen’s work equipment.┬áThat’s nitwittery, not security.

(Cross-posted at Advice Goddess)

Photo: city-data.com