Stress seems to be bringing out the worst in both passengers and flight crews lately …
One could argue that air travel has become the equivalent of the dry Southern California country side, waiting for the smallest of sparks to set off a firestorm.
This latest story about a jetBlue flight crew who put an 110 pound grandma through the wringer has me wondering if common sense has completely left the building in the current aviation environment.
Recent stories about flight crews deeming your skirt too short, forcing you to sit in the bathroom on a flight, accusations of deploying evacuation slides “too quickly”, kicking your “unruly” kid off the plane– however isolated — highlight not only the “power” bestowed on flight crews but how seemingly innocuous events quickly can cascade out of control in what can only be described as testing the limits of this “power”.
The latest power play involves a grandmother,a jetBlue flight, an unruly kid, an altercation, video camera, and the COPS. We touched on this story on our Standard Upright Position blog yesterday, but Chris Elliott and the team at the WSJ’s Middle Seat Terminal deserve the credit for getting it the story out.
Here’s my summary of the details provided by Chris and listening to the podcast interview (link below): the grandma, Marilyn Parver, recorded a minor altercation between two passengers regarding a screaming child. When she refused to relinquish the video, the flight crew threatened to blacklist her, and then said she was interfering with them, a federal crime. She was then greeted by officers and escorted off the plane. After refusing to delete the video, at the request of jetBlue rep who was part of the greeting party, she was arrested and thrown in the pokey.
You can hear Marilyn Parver’s side of the story on the IAG Podcast “The Granny vs. jetBlue”. She claims that all she did was take the video. She did not even get out of her seat. Now she does have an exclusive deal with ABC GMA for the video (evidently the story is not exclusive given her exhaustive recounting of the event) — but listening to her you don’t get the feeling she spends to much time on YouTube or planning her next viral response video to a John McCain political ad.
Oh, just in case you’re wondering if shooting videos on a plane is cause to get the police involved, check out the in-flight cabin video below of how one of our employees spent last Christmas…