Some airport passengers are looking forward to drinking a refreshing beer or glass of wine while waiting to board. Now, one lawmaker hopes to make sure airport security isn’t drinking one to drink themselves.
In a bill introduced this week, the lawmaker claims there are “serious complaints of excessive amounts of alcohol being served” on the tarmac. But doesn’t it seem a bit soon to start banning alcohol at the airport?
The reaction to the bill in its first public hearing on Wednesday seems to point to some confusion about just what people might be in for if the bill becomes law.
Representative Steve Russell, the Oklahoma Republican behind the bill, said “the bill is not about one person’s behavior, it’s about the over service of alcohol on the tarmac.” He goes on to say that he’s talking about all flights – not just those that use alcohol to attract passengers.
However, during the hearing, several lawmakers noted that hotels often ban alcohol consumption as a safety precaution – especially as it turns out that they can sometimes serve alcohol while on the tarmac.
Who’s the real drunk?
One supporter of the bill didn’t mince words when he approached the microphone.
“This flies in the face of common sense,” said Dan Williams, a representative from the midwest. “We are all about common sense here.” He said the bill was about “transparency” and that lawmakers should have the “right to know what’s going on when the alcohol is being served” on the tarmac.
Hey, who’s the drunken one in this situation?
To promote the bill to the next stage, Russell got supporters to pay for and paint his message on plastic bottles: “Stop the alcohol. Limit the damages.”
Russell would then quote this crossed-out message while discussing the details of the bill.