Thursday, December 6, 2007

Malls, Guns, and Whack Jobs


OK, we all know what happened at the Mall in Omaha, NE on Wednesday. Yes, it is tragic. Yes, my heart goes out to the families of the victims and the nut-job. Yes, it is a sick, sick world we live in these days. I'm sure there was something that could be done to prevent this from happening again.


Malachy Kavanaugh, spokesman for the International Council of Shopping Centers:



The International Council of Shopping Centers has conducted focus groups with shoppers to test how they would react to even tighter "airport style" security measures, including bag checks and magnetometers.


According to Kavanaugh, the results have shown that shoppers would accept the measures only if the national threat advisory system was raised to its highest level, red. Such extreme measures are "in the mall industry playbook ... but it is something no one wants to do," said Kavanaugh.




Oh yes, let's do that! Let's take something that we all do from time to time and turn it into an even bigger hassle than it already is. Here we are, in the middle of the Holiday Shopping Season and we're going to impose more hang-ups at the Mall Doors. You can be sure that there will be some people out there that will think it is nothing to do this. "We do it at the Airport, why not the malls?" I'll tell you why, HASSLE. Malls will close down faster than you can spit at them. No one wants to go through a check-point before getting to the check-out.


Just keep this in mind, folks, we don't need to make it any harder to do things for better security measures. Better training and more monitoring of what is already in place should help out. In the article already cited, the Chief of Police in Omaha did say that "(m)all surveillance initially flagged Hawkins "based on his actions"" and it appears to be a lack of personnel that was responsible for this going as far as it did.


Let's keep our Malls "screen-free" and leave the hassle for flying.





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