Friday, July 20, 2007

Shooting Yourself in the (Ca)Rear

The FAA Academy, like most government institutions, is littered with official signs and placards everywhere that provide notice for rules and regulations to be observed on the grounds. Some of the most common talk about how you're not supposed to have any weapons whatsoever on the grounds. This means on your person, in your bag, or in your car, and includes guns, large knives, and pretty much anything else that is designed to cause harm to other human beings.

This "no weapons" notice- located at the front gate, in the guard shack, around the buildings, everywhere - should be plain and clear to anyone. It features a big picture of a big pistol, and big black lettering that a one-eyed grandma with cataracts could read from 200 yards away on a dark night. They couldn't make it more obvious.

Well, thanks to this poster, the laws of natural selection have been proven correct. Natural selection is commonly referred to as "Survival of the fittest". In this case, it should be referred to "Weeding out the dumbasses".

Apparently, a new ATC student in a recent class decided it would be a good idea to bring live ammunition to class. Now, it's one thing if you went shooting, used your school bag to carry your gun/ammo, and - oops! - forgot to take the ammo out. Hey, mental lapses happen. Most normal people would keep their yaps shut and try not to draw attention to the fact that they have deadly objects on their person.

But what does our intrepid student do? He passes some live ammo around the classroom. I don't know how many rounds, what type/caliber they were, when he showed them, or other details like that. Whatever the case, one of the girls in the class got scared (rightfully so) and somehow got security called in. I would imagine they took him off for questioning. The end result is that the guy got fired.

The story was confirmed by one of the guards at the front gate. I happened to be sitting in the guard shack waiting for them to call me in, saw the aforementioned poster, and asked him if what I'd heard was true. He confirmed it, adding that - get this - the guy blew a second chance!

After the student was questioned, they led him out to his car. They asked him, in plain English, "Do you have any weapons in your car?" Just like that. It's a simple question. It's not abstract physics or in some obscure Mandarin dialect. Only eight words, none of them greater than two syllables.

What does our idiot say? "No," of course. They ask him to pop his trunk. Up comes the trunk, and there sitting in the middle of the trunk is a gun. He was immediately terminated.

From what the guard told me, if he had said "Yes" and admitted to the weapon he might still be in class. However, not only did he endanger the lives of fellow students and violate the regulations protecting federal buildings, he outright lied . That is the worst offense of all, I think.

You're going into a career where you will be trusted with thousands of lives a day and be responsible for following innumerable and often obtuse rules. Now you've proven that your word means nothing and that you can't follow even the simplest of plainly-stated kindergarten-level rules.

Good job, idiot, and good riddance. I hope you didn't spend too much money on CTI school, because you just wasted it all and killed your career by saying the wrong single-syllable word.

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