New TSA airport security rules don’t make sense

To the Editor:

Imagine yourself in an airport, about to go on vacation, waiting in line for security, and it’s finally your turn to go through.  You get to the x-ray machine for the carry-on items, and you put your items in a bin on the conveyer belt.

Just a couple of seconds later, you hear an alarm go off, and the security guard takes your water bottle out of your bag.  You throw the bottle away and finish the security check, but then you see the man who is going through security just after you, holding a small pocket knife.

The man makes it through security just fine, and you wonder, “How is he able to bring a pocket knife on a flight?”

The Transportation Security Administration changed some of its rules at the end of April. One of them is you are now allowed to bring small pocket knives on planes.  But there are some restrictions.  The blade must be no longer than 2.36 inches, and the blade’s width has to be a half-inch or smaller.  The knife also can’t have a molded grip.

But one thing I don’t get is that they don’t allow razors as carry-on items. I guess knives are just fine but bringing something used for shaving puts every passenger in danger.

Some people may think knives on planes aren't bad, and it gives people more freedom.  I don’t agree with this because it’s harder to call the authorities for help on a plane, and someone can hijack a plane using a weapon.  I know that air marshals are on most planes, but I think it's still dangerous.

I can kind of understand not being allowed to bring water bottles over 3.4 ounces on planes. I’ve traveled on planes before and have had to deal with this problem at security.  Liquids and aerosols can be made into explosives, but it’s probably easier to kill someone with a knife than it is to make an explosive out of a water bottle, or a can of Axe.

One of the things I like about the rule change is that now people are allowed to bring sports equipment as carry-on items.  Now you are allowed to bring things like toy bats, ski poles, hockey sticks, lacrosse sticks, and up to two golf clubs.  This is something the TSA should’ve fixed before.

Overall, I don’t think we should allow pocketknives on planes because it just puts people in more danger.  One of the reasons the TSA is allowing knives in the first place is so its officers can worry more about bigger threats such as bombs.

What I think they should do is increase the limit of liquids and aerosols as carry-ons.  The current limit of 3.4 ounces is kind of small, smaller than a Capri-Sun pack; maybe somewhere around 4.5 ounces is a reasonable size.  I've had to deal with airport security guard stopping me or a family member from bringing water bottles more than once.  I believe that many things can be made into weapons, but knives just make it easier.

Thomas VonDollen

Guilderland