November 2001

Coffee, Tea, or Frangibles?

The events of September 11 are still fresh, and they sting, and even infuriate me. Every day seems to bring a new insult, either the mounting confirmed death toll (which seems to have settled around 6,000), or a new videotaped message from Osama bin Laden.

Beyond the daily irritations, however, more serious factors are at work. For instance, there is a new emphasis on security that Americans will have to live with, primarily at airports. I don’t have a problem with that, except that I won’t be able to carry my 3-inch Spyderco pocketknife on board airplanes any more. That’s a shame; it was handy for opening packages of crackers.

Since I’ll have to put up with inconveniences small and large, and since several thousand young soldiers will have to put their lives on the line to take bin Laden and other terrorists down, it seems only fair that we can hope for some events to run toward freedom, responsibility, and the right we have to defend ourselves against enemies foreign and domestic. That is what this is all about, right?

Here are a few things I’d like to see happen:

• I hope the coup de grâce for bin Laden is delivered by a sniper. Snipers don’t get enough credit for instilling fear in our enemies and selectively sending them to meet God, or whomever calls them to account.

• I fantasize about George W. coming on national TV and holding bin Laden’s head on a pike. Medieval, yes, but then we’re fighting people who live in caves.

• I desperately hope mommies across the country wake up and realize that while social programs are nice, there are ugly people in the world who would like to kill me, you, them, and all our children, if it advances their political goals. If half the country doesn’t realize we have to spend a lot of money to defend against future World Trade Center killers, we are in trouble.

• I hope the Bill Mahers of the world continue to be exposed for what they are: Cowards and blowhards. Though everyone has a right to free speech, I also have a right to call Phil Donahue a damn fool for wanting to “talk through” these problems, or to enlist “world opinion” to “find justice.” A 5.56mm NATO round is all the justice I need to see meted out.

• I’d like to see everyone who works the cabin on an airplane carry an appropriate firearm. Nothing would make me feel safer on a flight than to see the butt of a Kel-Tec .32 ACP flash under the jacket of a flight attendant. “Coffee, tea, or frangibles?”

• If the cabin attendants can’t or won’t carry, then I’d like to see pilots on planes carry. I’ve seen one former FAA idiot say that pilots shouldn’t be “Gary Coopers” or “air cowboys.” Though I’ve read conflicting reports, it seems many pilots are former military personnel, and they wouldn’t mind carrying or training to carry in the air. Imagine what a difference one handgun per cockpit would have made on September 11.

It would have changed everything.

-Todd Woodard