Capitol Security Conundrum

by CalWatchdog Staff | January 13, 2010 3:38 pm

Having been recently mugged downtown, I carry pepper spray. Last week, I forgot I had it in my pocket, and went through the security screening at the entrance to the State Capitol. The metal detector beeped, I blushed and handed it to the guard mouthing “it’s pepper spray,” almost apologetically. He promptly ran it through the X-ray machine and gave it back to me, to my astonishment.

On daily trips to the Capitol, I am growing accustomed to handing over my laptop, purse and even my pepper spray to the capitol security guards. And they always return the pepper spray without batting an eyelash.

This week, I was asked to remove jewelry and yesterday, I almost had to remove my belt. They let me keep the pepper spray, which can induce coughing, choking, nausea and temporary blindness when sprayed into someone’s face.┬áBut the dangerous chunky gold necklace and fake lizard belt could be dangerous?

What next? Confiscation of blue blazers with gold buttons? Shoes with tassels? Hoop earrings and hair ornaments?

We should just be glad that TSA is not in charge.


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