Saturday, September 18, 2010
Archie Bunker, counter-terror expert
Posted by John McHale
On a JetBlue flight to Phoenix this week, I took a break from a story I was writing on software defined radio and the Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) and caught a couple episodes of "All in the Family" playing on JetBlue's in-flight entertainment system.
You only see shows like that on cable or premium channels like HBO, the language and Archie's very un-PC rants scare networks away. Exemplified in the first episode I watched on the flight where Archie was arguing with his son-in-law Mike (Meathead), about gun control. They had just seen a local TV station manager give a speech on gun control and Archie demanded equal time.
Archie's premise was that if more people had guns there would be less crime. Then he delivered this bit of counter-terrorism advice: "you could end sky-jacking tomorrow by arming all the passengers. The airline would hand out guns at the beginning of the flight, then collect them all when they land."
Just as he said this the flight attendant was coming by with headphones... weird.
Some 88-year-old woman had a break-in at her house, and Archie argued it wouldn't have happened if she had a gun.
Mike: "How would 88-year old walk around carrying a gun?!"
Archie: "I don't know, maybe put in her stocking next to her varicose vein!"
Some more lines: Archie's daughter, Gloria, shouts out statistics about how many people are killed by guns. Archie: "Would it make you feel any better if they were pushed outta windows, little girl?"
Mike mentions Supreme Court rulings in favor of gun control. Archie responds with "the Supreme Court ain't got nothin to do with the law!"
Fun stuff, although I left out the more ethnic-oriented comments from Archie -- thought it best to stay away from those. However, there was some funny dialogue from the other episode on the flight, which had Archie and his wife Edith visiting cousin Maude (Bea Arthur). Maybe this was the episode that launched that show -- "Maude."
Maude: "I happen to be a Hubert Humphrey Democrat."
Maude's daughter Carol: "What does that mean?"
Maude's husband Walter: "It means she's not against anything."
Walter to Carol: "Why are you wearing white for your wedding?"
Maude chimes in: "Because white has always been a symbol of innocence and purity in marriages."”
Walter: "Married before ... multiple affairs ... so how did she manage that tricky u-turn back to innocence and purity?"
Those shows made the flight ... lotta laughs.