The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution protects the right of the people to keep and bear arms. FBI background checks show that firearms sales have surged in the last three months of 2014. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) said that a record number of firearms was found at US airport security checkpoints in 2014.
According to TSA, the number of firearms increased 22 percent to an all-time high of 2,212 last year, more than triple the number in 2005. Eighty-three percent of guns were loaded. Most interesting part of the news is that a 94-year-old man was found with a loaded revolver on his belt.
U.S. national media reported immediate gun sales increase just after former Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson fatally shot Michael Brown, spurring protests that turned violent.
TSA: Traveling with Special Items
TSA says in its website that travelers may only transport UNLOADED firearms in a locked, hard-sided container as checked baggage. The container must be completely secured from being accessed. All firearms, ammunition and firearm parts, including firearm frames, receivers, clips and magazines are prohibited in carry-on baggage.
Realistic replicas of firearms are also prohibited in carry-on bags and must be packed in checked baggage. Rifle scopes are permitted in carry-on and checked bags.
In addition to TSA security rules on transporting firearms, airlines, as well as state, local and international governments have additional rules that may vary by location.
For more information about TSA security rules, click here.
Dallas/Fort Worth Airport has the most guns discovered, at 120. It was followed by Atlanta Airport with 109 and Phoenix Sky Harbor with 78.
Besides firearms, TSA officers found an Mk 2 fragmentation grenade in Los Angeles, a homemade avalanche control charge in Alaska, as well as fireworks, propane, spear guns, a flare gun, more than 700 stun guns, and smoke grenades.
Bag searches turned up inert explosives and artillery shells, an improvised explosives training kit, a replica Claymore anti-personnel mine, grenade launcher practice rounds and an unloaded cannon barrel.
Officers discovered contraband drugs, razor blades, brass knuckles, throwing stars, scissors and countless knives. An 8.5-inch (21.6-cm) knife hidden in an enchilada was found at Sonoma County Airport in California.
“I forgot I have my firearms with me”, “my husband (my wife) packed my bag” are the two most common excuses according to TSA.