Chuck Schumer Wants to Keep Airplanes Completely Knife-Free

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Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images2012 Getty Images

Last week, the TSA announced that travelers will soon be allowed to carry their sports equipment and modestly sized knives onto airplanes. Senator Chuck Schumer thinks that's a bad idea, so he held a Sunday news conference calling on the agency to reverse its decision. "Everyone is befuddled," he said. "You don’t have to have a PhD in physics, you don’t have to be Albert Einstein to know that these items are dangerous." In addition to pointing out that the aforementioned items "still pose a significant hazard to the flight crew, other passengers, and even the integrity of the plane," Schumer argued that the change will create a "distraction" for already over-burdened TSA agents, who might end up measuring pocketknives and baseball bats when they could be detecting more serious threats. (The new guidelines only permit blades up to 2.4-inches and metal and wooden bats up to 24 inches.) The TSA believes the opposite is true, and that the move will allow their employees to focus on looking for explosives like the fake bomb that made it through security at Newark Liberty Airport last week. Schumer said that he would try to find a way to overturn the policy in Congress if the TSA doesn't heed his request.