With Sheriffs Like These…
After spending untold billions of dollars securing the nation’s airlines from ill-intentioned passengers, it seems there’s a new menace in the nation’s skies. A gun being carried by a U.S. Airways pilot accidentally discharged on a Saturday flight between Denver and Charlotte with 124 passengers on board, according to reports.
Why a pilot was carrying a loaded weapon on a passenger flight seems the logical question, but apparently a program launched after the 9/11 attacks — the Transportation Security Administration’s Federal Flight Deck Officer program — allows certain airline personnel, including pilots, to carry guns on flights to defend against terrorist threats. Why the pilot would be handling it in the cockpit without the safety lock engaged remains under investigation.
This tale has a happy ending: no one was injured. But a suggestion for the airlines: If you intend to arm your pilots, how about an on-the-house adult beverage for the passengers, just for some delusional peace of mind? Because when bullets start flying, I don’t want to be sober.