This morning i was struck by the disappearance of yet another check in counter at Port Columbus. The row of empty counter space was, up until recently, bustling with flyers and airline employees. I a frequent business traveler and a proud member of Southwest's A List. My home town airport, CMH, is slowly fading away and while my life will be impacted by its passing, the airline industry and pilots, flight attendants, baggage handlers and other airport workers will be far more directly impacted.
While the number of airport employees and the travelers who supply their payroll continues to decline, the number of federal government TSA agents rises steadily. Not only do they swarm around their porno scanners, X-ray machines and groping rooms, they are lined up at my gate ready to sort through the personal effects of the 60 or so customers waiting to board this flight. Can't wait for my turn.
An associate of mine now chooses to drive up to nine hours to avoid flying. His logic is that the hassle is not worth the time savings, and that hassle has already erased most of the time savings. I still fly on trips longer than three hours, but the crowd of grown men and women putting their clothes back on at the dressing stations after the scanners is almost enough to make me give up flying altogether.
That is especially sad for the airline industry and all who serve it. I am but one voter and taxpayer. It has become increasingly obvious to me that blog entries and e-mails to my family and friends will do nothing to stem the tide of growth and control by our federal overlords. But you in the airline industry and pilot unions have. Far larger voice. Please spend more of my airfare speaking out against this tyranny. I fear your voices are the only ones left that can save a once great industry. The only winner here is the TSA. Think about it.