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Thursday, April 27, 2017
CNS Columnist Blames Victim's 'Culture of Entitlement' In Airplane Incident

WorldNetDaily columnist Sean Harshey isn't the only ConWeb writer who wants to blame that guy for choosing to be dragged off that United Airlines plane. columnist Lynn Wardle joins the victim-blaming in his April 18 column with a lot of complaining about a "culture of entitlement":

His behavior seemed to be deliberately intended to maximize the stress and trauma for everyone – including not just the United employees and airport police but also all of the other passengers on the plane.

He succeeded in doing that.  Somehow he got back on the plane and had to be removed a second time. 

Apparently that passenger claimed to be a doctor who had patients to see the next day.  Certainly that is a relevant consideration.  But is it really dispositive?  Are doctors really so much more (that much more) important than other passengers?

Are doctors somehow morally superior to other passengers who are teachers, students, public employees, and business men and women who are working hard to provide for their families?  Are they more important than moms and dads who are trying to get back to their families, to help their children get off to school the next morning?

The passenger was described as a 69-year-old man.  Perhaps his age had something to do with his behavior.  Older people sometimes can be grumpy and difficult. (I say that sheepishly as an older person myself.)


Perhaps other factors contributed to his disturbing behavior.  The incident exemplified what could be called a “culture of entitlement.”  While it can be found in many (probably all) nations and cultures, it seems to be in abundant supply in the United States today.

It is a “pound-your-fist-on-the-table-and-stand-on-your-rights” mentality.  It says: “I paid for this service so I am entitled to have it without any disruptions or inconveniences.” 

Sadly, this incident contributes to a public perception that doctors consider themselves to be better than other people.  It fosters the perception that doctors are arrogant, superior, and think that they are above the common inconveniences of life that other people have to experience from time to time.

Wardle does aver that "it also could be argued that the United employees and the airport police displayed a “culture of entitlement” in the way they dealt with the situation." But much of his ire is directed at the doctor, and he's weirdly oblivious to the fact that, yes, there is something of an entitlement to paying for an airline ticket and going through all of the hoops necessary to actually get seated on the plane -- one has paid for a service and one does not expect to be randomly kicked off the plane after one has been seated on it, for no reason other than the airline wanted to put its own employees on instead.

Wardle claims to be a law professor, and he doesn't seem to know about any of the legal ramifications of any of all this, which go beyond questions of "entitlement"?

Posted by Terry K. at 1:39 PM EDT

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