NORMAN — The missing element in this past week’s Los Angeles airport shooting seems to be that the gunman was not in a secure area when he pulled the assault rifle out of his duffel bag.
The alleged gunman, Paul Ciancia, could have been in any public space — a shopping mall, theater or athletic event. He was not a ticketed passenger and had not gone through a security screening.
Authorities allege he was targeting the Transportation Security Administration. He killed one TSA agent and wounded three other persons. The unemployed motorcycle mechanic was shot by security guards and remains hospitalized under 24-hour armed guard.
Whether Ciancia’s action will lead to changes in airport security remains to be seen. Some are calling for more security at airport entrances and arming of TSA agents.
That single act by an apparently deranged person won’t likely lead to security changes. It will, however, make air travelers more anxious going into the busiest travel season of the year.