Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Are You Kidding Me?

I just read this story about a mom and her autistic kid that was kicked off the airplane. It enrages me on so many levels...

RALEIGH-DURHAM, N.C. -- A mother and her 2-year-old son were kicked off an American Eagle flight at the Raleigh-Durham airport, WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham, N.C., reported.
Officials said that the plane was taxiing to a runway when Jarrett Farrell began to get upset as the plane was in motion.

His mother, Janice Farrell, told WTVD-TV that she did everything she could to calm down her child but received little help from the flight crew.

Since when it is the flight crew's responsibility to help you control your child???

"If they just would have been a little more understanding, I think that none of this would have been a problem," Farrell told WTVD-TV. "He just melted down. He saw me getting upset. He was upset. He was on the floor rolling around."

Farrell said after a while, one of the pilots came back to where they were seated and gave the pair a warning.

As he should have...

When Jarrett failed to calm down after that, the pilot returned to the cockpit and turned the plane around, Farrell said.

"The pilot made an announcement that there was a woman and her child on the plane and the child is uncontrollable. And at that point, I just broke down," Farrell told WTVD-TV.

She said when they returned home to Cary, N.C., she and her husband made a decision to call American Airlines corporate office. She said a representative on the phone apologized for the incident and told her is should not have happened.

What? What shouldn't have happened? Her getting kicked off the plane or her not being able to control her child?? I'm confused. Had I been a passenger on that plane, and this behavior would have been allowed to continue for the entire flight, I would have been supremely pissed. You know, some people are nervous enough when flying anyway. Add a screaming child in there, and you have the perfect recipe for nervous breakdown by the end of the flight. No person has the kind of constitution that would enable them to survive a flight like this without needing any type of therapy after.

Look, I know I'm an asshole, but I'm not a complete moron. I understand that autistic children really can't help themselves. I understand that it takes a special kind of parent to be able to raise an autistic child. But really, if you have an autistic kid, and that kid doesn't tolerate flying...take another means of transport. Train? Bus? Drive your own damn car?

Autism aside, it really pisses me off when I am in a public place, and parents let their little snowflakes run rampant. It pisses me off even more when management of said public establishments don't put their foot down. The fact that American Airlines states that she shouldn't have been kicked off the plane tells me that I really need to avoid flying with this airline altogether. I was heading in that direction anyway when they decided to start nickel and diming me to death just to fly.

Southwest is my new bitch.


meesha.v said...

I always look around before I board the plane,if there are small children around crappy flight is almost certain.

Xavier Onassis said...

O.K., ya know I luv ya, but I cannot believe that as a nurse, you could blame a parent for not being able to cure autism for the duration of a flight.

I don't like screaming kids either. I had a roommate once who claimed that screaming kids were just trying to communicate their needs with the only non-verbal tool they had. According to him, the need that a screaming kid was trying to communicate was the need to be put in a pillowcase with a couple of bricks and tossed in the fucking river. But he was an asshole.

I digress.

The fact that it was an American Eagle flight tells me it was a short commuter hop. It's not like it was a trans-Atlantic flight. Probably 90 minutes, tops.

That's 90 minutes of other people having to deal with an autistic child compared to the mother's entire life, till death do we part, having to deal with an autistic child.

Have a little fucking compasion. Buy some goddamn foam earplugs. Put on some headphones and watch a movie.

Kicking a stressed out mother dealing with an autistic child off a flight is like kicking a wheelchair-bound passenger off the flight because it hinders the flight attendant's ability to move up and down the aisle efficiently passing out the peanuts and the diet cokes.

If you can afford to buy a ticket and don't pose a physical threat to the other passengers, then you ought to be able to fly.

Maybe people who don't want to listen to screaming kids should drive their cars to where they are going and listen to their radio instead of taking public transportation.

Airlines are just flying Greyhound buses. Deal with it.

BTW, kitchen looks great!

Indy said...

she should've checked the kid in--

emawkc said...

I don't get it. This was totally avoidable. I mean, doesn't Benadryl work on autistic kids?

Just have him chase a strong enough does of Bennie (as I call it) with a shot of bourbon and he would be out for the entire trip (not to mention it would stop his runny nose, sneezing and watery eyes).

Wayne said...

It becomes a safety issue when the pilot has to come out. if he/she cannot do the job (fly the plane, isten to the controllers, or whatnot), then the pilot is supposed to eject the problem from he plane. I understand the issue with autism. I feel for any parent or relation of the child. I am an asshole, I know that, but if the choice was risking the flight or removing a disturbance, the disturbance goes.

Just insert 'noisy passenger' over 'autistic child' and the story still works.

I hope the mom gets some alone time, but if she knew this sets her kid off, then maybe she should have thought it through. She may have thought a payday was at the end of that.

Either way, airline looks like an ass, but the pilot made a decision and must justify it.

I make it a point to remove my kid from an area when she gets wound up. We take it to the car and ket her vent all she wants. Usually a few minutes later when she gets her sanity back, we go back in and that is the end of it. And more often than not, I will get a compliment on how I handled it. Kids will be kids, but my kids will understand that when in public, you will behave yourself.

Faith said...

Um, I saw that kid and his mom on GMA on Wednesday morning. (Or was it Thursday? This week has been a blur.)

He sat still for about 1 minute before he started getting squirmy and pissy. I had to turn off the t.v. after another minute, because (a) it was time to go to work, and (b) it was difficult to follow the interview anymore.

The kid, for the record, apparently has a *mild* case of autism. (What it looked like he had to me was a case of being a 2 year old.)

And the mother also had a bag that wasn't stowed properly, and which she refused to allow the flight attendant to stow for her. Because it was full of his toys. (She was sitting in a bulkhead seat, and thought she could just stuff it under her chair. Um, no, that's where the person behind you stores their shit, dumbass.)

Why didn't she take a couple of toys out and let the flight attendant store the rest? Mayhaps because she's a pain in the ass? Who apparently is busy raising another pain in the ass?

I'm tired of shit being blamed on austism left and right lately. Heather's right...if you know your kid might have trouble with being trapped in a seat with his seatbelt fastened for more than 30 seconds, then find another way to get where you need to go. It's not a matter of being compasionate about a possible disease that kid may have. It's about being a responsible human being.