HIGHTOWER: Don't Let Them Grab Our Goobers

OK, call me a clod, an insensitive brute, even politically incorrect, if you must -- but haven't we finally gone too far in trying to protect everyone in our society from everything?I refer to the recent move by the D.O.T -- the Department of Transportation -- to protect airline passengers from: peanuts. Great Galloping Goobers! What's our country coming to? Protect us from toxic waste, yes, from consumer fraud, please, from assorted corporate abuses . . . but, peanuts?Believe it or not, a new D.O.T. proposal would require airlines to provide designated, peanut-free buffer zones on their flights to accommodate any and all passengers who suffer from peanut allergies. The Wall Street Journal reports that at a minimum, said buffer zones would have to include the allergy-suffering passenger's own row, plus the rows in front of and behind them.So, you jump on board without having had time to eat lunch. You're tired and hungry, but when the flight attendant comes down the aisle distributing those little life-saving bags of nourishing goobers, the attendant skips right by you, saying: "Sorry, but you're in a federally-protected peanut-free row." It's a nutty idea, I tell you.All right, I concede that peanut allergies are no joke -- even a tiny taste of them can be deadly to those with a severe allergy, and it's said that even the fumes from a planeload of passengers opening their little bags at once could cause itchy eyes and other reactions. But the D.O.T. could not find a single case of medical incidents caused by on-board peanuts, nor is there any proof that a buffer zone would actually help the one-tenth of one percent of the population who are peanut impaired. Still, the dotty D.O.T.ers decided that imposing peanut-free zones would not be "unduly burdensome," so let's just do it anyway.This is Jim Hightower saying . . . To the barricades, frequent flyers! If we let them grab our goobers, next thing they'll be after something really important . . . like our beer!

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