TGIF Late Nite Lite: It couldn’t get here fast enough!Posted: September 7, 2012
Good Late Nite!
This has been such an exhausting week. I was so tired when I got home from the football game last night I could not even lift a finger to turn the laptop on. So this Friday night post is something I have waited for. Tonight I have a bunch of different topics, so let’s get on with it.
First, I wanted to bring this news item to your attention. Not sure if you have seen this incident from earlier in the week, but since I have a brother with Downs, this news story was particularly upsetting. American Airlines boots family with Down child from flight
A California family that was not allowed to board a cross-country flight says they believe they were discriminated against because their son has Down syndrome.
Robert Vanderhorst, his wife Joan and 16-year-old son Bede, who is disabled, were booked to fly on an American Airlines flight from Newark to Los Angeles on Sunday when the boy and his parents were not allowed on the plane.
The family from Porterville had upgraded to first class tickets at an airport kiosk, and asked the airline to seat the boy and one of his parents together – a request the airline granted – Vanderhorst said Tuesday.
When the family was ready to board, they were stopped by airline personnel, told their son was a “security risk” and would not be allowed on the flight, he said. The parents protested, and later were rebooked to fly coach with another airline.
American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller said the disabled boy was agitated and running around the gate area prior to boarding, which his parents dispute. The airplane’s pilot observed the boy, Miller said, and made the call based on his behavior.
“He was not ready to fly, that was our perspective,” Miller said. “We rebooked the family out of concern for the young man’s safety and that of other passengers as well.”
But Vanderhorst said his son did not run at any time, did not make any loud noises and didn’t display any other offensive behaviors. The boy walked around with him or sat quietly in the gate area, Vanderhorst said.
A cell phone video captured by the boy’s mother shows Bede sitting and quietly playing with a baseball cap.
Oh, but they will put him in coach…Teen denied boarding on American Airlines flight because he has Down syndrome, family says
At one point, Port Authority police were even called on the confused family.
“Nothing like this has ever happened to us before. That’s what’s so shocking. He’s usually our good luck charm. Good things usually happen when Bede is with us,” Vanderhorst said.
The airline said Bede couldn’t board because he was ‘agitated’ in the waiting area, but a video the family made shows Bede, above, quietly playing with his hat. The Vanderhorsts said the pilot and crew never spoke with them or their son and they believe the airline didn’t want a person with Down syndrome in first class.
Bede and his parents had been in Jackson, N.J., visiting family and were eager to make the long return flight home. On a “lark” they had even upgraded their seats to first class, shelling out an extra $625 dollars.
“My wife said, ‘oh Bede’s never flown first class,’ he’ll be so excited.”
Vanderhorst said Bede, a freshman in high school, has flown “at least 30 times” through his life and has never caused any trouble.
Nothing was different before Sunday’s flight, he said. Bede was sticking close to his parents and was not acting unruly, nor was he upset.
But as the family waited to board, an American Airlines official pulled them aside and said the pilot had observed Bede and didn’t feel safe allowing him on the plane.
Joan Vanderhorst quickly snapped on her video camera and can be heard sobbing. “We are being singled out,” she said. Robert Vanderhorst, an attorney, calmly pleads with the airline official. “He’s behaving. He’s demonstrating he’s not a problem.”
The agitated American Airlines employee instead called Port Authority police to escort the family away from the gate.
This incident pissed me off, and I hope the family sues and gets some kind of relief from American Airlines. Fly the friendly skies, as long has you don’t have Downs Syndrome.
Alright, now for the cartoons…
Some of the cartoons I saw made the valid point about the RNC’s lack of bringing on past presidents.
You may need to click on that link to see the image full size.
And then we have more about Big Dawg…
This one took me a few moments to get it…that Clinton is holding a branding iron, like I said, it was an exhausting week.
And then there were the ones about Obama. This first one is from a foreign cartoonist, and I thought it was very clever:
And this next cartoon really illustrates the Tea Party at home:
That woman has curly hair just like my aunt, you know the one who thinks Obama is a communist, specifically a black communist.
Okay, just a couple more political ones…
Keeping with the football theme:
And finally this last one, and just in time, cause I have to get ready to head over to the high school and support my Banjoville panthers…
This is an open thread!