The Transportation Security Administration has found 892 guns in passengers' carry-on bags at security checkpoints, a 19 percent increase from the comparable period of last year, the New York Times reports. The 2013 gun-tote tally was a record, at 1,813 firearms found. While the percentage of passengers packing guns is actually tiny, given that the TSA screens about 1.8 million passengers daily, the numbers and the growth rate are striking. In 2005, when the agency first started keeping detailed count, 660 guns were found.
The issue at checkpoints is different from the overall issue of the right to carry a firearm in public. “What we tend to see with the TSA is people who, say, carry in a briefcase all the time as they go about their daily lives, and they're running to take a flight and forget to remove it,” said John Pierce, a Virginia lawyer who is a co-founder of OpenCarry.org, a group campaigning for the right to “openly carry properly holstered handguns in daily American life.”