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Making movie theaters safer for pennies

Posted by Richard on July 27, 2012

Ari Armstrong today proposed a simple and elegant way to increase security in movie theaters (and other public venues):

They could place a large, obvious sign right outside the entrance with the following text:

Armed, off-duty police officers who carry their guns into this theater get unlimited complimentary movie entry and concessions. Please see management for details.

The marginal cost of filling an extra seat in a movie theater is zero. The marginal cost of giving the armed officer free popcorn is what—a quarter?

I think it’s a great idea, but offer one caveat: The average law enforcement officer spends far less time at the range than the average private citizen who carries concealed, and as a consequence is a far poorer shot. A recent report on California police shootings (sorry, I don’t recall where I saw it) found that cops missed their target half the time.

Still, the deterrent effect alone would be significant.

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