Is Safety Turning Into Discrimination?
I am wondering if receiving special treatment is "discrimination"? I have recently got off a flight with Air Arabia from Tangier to Barcelona and if I was discriminated against because I was the only white western female on the whole plane, then I don't mind one bit. I ended up in the front row seat with two empty seats beside me, whilst the rest of the plane was a heaving mass of humanity swathed in too much body fat, too many odors and much too much flying agro for my liking. Now I sound discriminatory, but there is a prelude to this scenario.
I am a very tolerant flyer due to the fact that I frequently fly and there is no point in getting upset about things. But whilst waiting for this flight I have never before witnessed such rudeness from passengers to the airline staff in my life, as that when I was in the queue to check-in. I calmly stood by and watched as I waited for my turn after having been pushed, shoved and moving my trolley this way and that until it felt like a one-legged dancing partner.
Dealing with the public en masse is a hard call at the best of times, but the airline staff just kept trying to deal with the manic abusive onslaught the best they could with a tight smile on their faces. I applaud them for their self-discipline, because there was one group in particular that I would have told to find another airline, very politely of course. There is such an uproar when people are "kicked" off their flight, but these people wouldn't have made it past checking in, if I had had any say in the matter. Where does it say in the airline staff employment agreement that they are to suffer abuse on a daily basis?
So when is it discrimination or a safety issue? Does the safety rule come into play when it is a question of the "majority" comfort barometer? People have been kicked off for many reasons and someone always has to yell about it as being unfair or "discrimination". If there was no Facebook, twitter or other social media, no one would care, because no one would know about how socially inept they are or whether the flight attendant had been pushed past breaking point.
Out of curiosity I actually Googled the reasons for people being kicked off flights or claiming that they had been "discriminated against" and I had a chuckle at what I found:
Wearing your jeans so low that the whole plane can see your butt crack, only your mother likes that sight, not a whole plane.
A woman doing a solo performance at the top of her voice of a Whitney Houston classic, that is definitely air pollution when in a confined space.
Refusing to stop playing an electronic game just because of "who" you are, when the plane is taking off. No one is that special and if you are, get your own plane!
A woman made a sarcastic comment to the air steward by calling her the "Queen" of the airline, as in "she who must be obeyed". I would definitely have kicked this woman off. Imagine the uproar if the flight attendant had been a male, then it would have been a sexual discriminatory attack on the attendant.
Another woman was removed for a tweet meant as a joke, that the pilot was drunk, when of course he was completely sober. How stupid can she be? She may as well have tweeted that there was a bomb on the plane.
A Frenchman was removed from a flight for his "stench" that neither the flight crew nor the other passengers could cope with. Apparently he had doused himself in Dior at one of the duty free shops at the airport.
Waving a sex toy whilst mimicking a crew's safety demonstration will definitely get you the exit door.
As for discrimination:
The latest one is just another "religious" beef over a can of coke and wanting to receive it unopened, which is against airline policy. Why would you tweet about this, unless you are seeking the publicity?
Then you have one about a guy being "too tall" to fly because his legs were in the aisle, as they didn't fit in front of him. Well, that is definitely a safety issue.
A prominent executive was asked to move seats, as he was not allowed to sit beside two minors. Apparently this is in case of inappropriate conduct, which gives the impression that "all" men are potential pedophiles or a danger to children. I don't see anything wrong with that as it is a precautionary measure. There would be hell to pay if he was.
If you look sick, as a very fair skinned redhead did recently, you had better make sure you have an obliging doctor ready to email a letter saying that you are in fact alright to fly. As far as I am concerned there have been too many jet-setting viruses for my liking.
If you are blind, you will be seated beside someone of the same sex and the last off the plane in an emergency. This is unfortunate, but definitely a safety issue as no one wants to stumble over a blind man in a rush to the emergency exit.
There is a "one-bag" policy, instead of the standard two bags, if you happen to be flying with Lufthansa to Israel. Another one for the religious can of worms.
If you don't like the airline policies, fly with another airline. And if you can't find an airline that will put up with your antics, take the train, ship or bus, but they probably won't turn the other cheek either.
As for the discrimination issues, the world is not a perfect place and it never will be, so don't take everything on a personal level. Alternatively, I believe a "happy" pill should be handed out to every passenger before boarding, with no discrimination as to who gets it.