The New York Post isn’t exactly known for its tact. It has doxed a medic for her work on OnlyFans, published a photo of a man seconds away from being struck by a subway train, spread disinformation, and endorsed Trump—twice. But a comment from Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) last week apparently went too far, even for the Post.
In an appearance on Sean Hannity’s Fox News show days after a gunman killed 19 children and two teachers at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, Boebert argued against “politicizing” the tragedy, but followed up with a bizarre remark. “When 9/11 happened, we didn’t ban planes,” she said. “We secured the cockpits.”
Boebert: When 9/11 happened, we didn’t ban planes pic.twitter.com/nvWUBz8KNO
— Acyn (@Acyn) May 27, 2022
The Post branded this comment “tasteless” and “senseless.” Hard to argue with that. It’s also worth noting, as the Post does, it’s basically wrong. The 2001 terror attacks led to the construction of a massive security state, including the formation of the Transportation Security Administration, the passage of the PATRIOT Act, and changes in federal law to allow for the ongoing detention of “enemy combatants” at Guantánamo Bay. “Securing the cockpits” entailed making sure that no weapons got on planes—not that that stopped Boebert’s colleague Rep. Madison Cawthorn from trying. In this light, Boebert’s comment could be read as an accidental endorsement of gun control.
It’s not surprising that Boebert would do anything in her power to avoid the topic of gun control. After all, she’s a fan of guns, big time. As I wrote in my recent profile of the Colorado congresswoman, Boebert owns a restaurant where staff are encouraged to open-carry firearms. (One former employee told me that Boebert jokingly pointed a loaded gun at him when he said he would have voted for Barack Obama for a third term.)
Compared to 9/11, the nation’s response to mass shootings has typically been, basically, nothing. Boebert’s comment begs the question: How would one secure classrooms? Would the congresswoman prefer that entering a school every day be as cumbersome and perplexing as going through airport security? (Many kids already walk through metal detectors upon entering school every day.) And what’s to prevent a shooter from doing as the Sandy Hook gunman did and entering a school not by entering an unlocked door, but by shooting through a window?
Or is the question of how to actually stop shootings not the actual point for her?