So for the last week or so here in Chicago airports Midway & O’Hare (MDW & ORD), people have basically been held hostage in line through security trying to board flights.
Now anyone who has gone through MDW in the past few years is no stranger to those long lines.
I remember coming off of a flight from Arizona two years ago on a Thursday evening in March and the TSA lines were long for people needing to get through security.
I was a United Airlines employee for seven years, I did accounting and customer service, I know my way around an airport, ticketing, refunds and what needs to happen so passengers can fly.
I started my airline career prior to the September 11th tragedies (in early 2000) and I was at my desk that warm Tuesday morning that none of us will ever forget.
What we need in our airports is real security, no offense to those working hard to be the TSA but that agency having part time workers (recently bumped up to full time), starting at $ 12.00/hr. is not enough.
What we need is to hire former military veterans to handle the security at our airports. Armed, real deal prideful men and women who have seen real combat, know how to get the job done and with plenty of respect.
My late father was a proud Navy man and I was honored to be his son and make sure he was buried in Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, IL
You should see the volunteers out there and full time staff who keep that place immaculate and make sure those who have given all are fully respected.
Last week I ate dinner at Cantigny VFW in Joliet, my mother lives near there and those are her friends and neighbors but again the veterans there are amazing.
That’s what we need in airports, our absolute finest making sure our skies are safe that people get to where they need to go and these long lines disappear.
And these veterans wouldn’t work under the TSA or Homeland Security, make it legit and put it under the Department of Defense.
Also it needs to be that budget cuts can’t compromise our safety like what just happened. We’ve seen what has happened in Brussels, we know terrorists only need one opportunity to create chaos but our defense needs to be on their “A” game everyday.
I was proud of my airline days but when I worked with the former military members at United it was always an honor.
Its now summer time, travel season and business travel is getting back in swing, I’m sure load factors on planes are over 90%.
Load factor is the industry term for the percentage of paying customers on board, meaning not frequent flyers, airline employees or anyone with a “buddy pass” from an airline employee.
It’s time to take our air travel seriously, to have men and women in uniform at the check ins, at the gates, checking bags and persons, that’s what we need.
Now as for the TSA blaming airlines for having bag fees and thus more people carry luggage on planes and that slows down the process. I understand the sentiment but also realize that many people pack all of their belongings with them on planes.
Prior to bag fees people still brought lots of stuff (you should have seen what came through ORD back before 9/11), its why there is a long list of banned items on board and it’s constantly updated.
The thing is security in airports and everywhere for that matter can’t be half-assed. If the government wants us to feel secure and not have folks in fear then we need to have confidence that we are safe.
That confidence starts with ourselves and not allowing fear to drown us but also that we can go anywhere and know there are correctly trained professionals having our backs.
Security doesn’t start with budget cuts and hoping something bad doesn’t happen because I’m from the hood, bad stuff happens but we need the right people protecting us.
Who better than our finest in uniform?
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Filed under: politics