I tell you, we’re in the midst of an epidemic in Western civilization. I don’t know the name of the disease, but I certainly know the symptoms. There are exactly two:
- no one is responsible
- everyone is entitled
Put those two things together in the same person and you’ve got a miserable bastard to deal with.
How about a whole bunch of them? Take, for example, a bunch of the passengers on US Airways Flight 1549. They were in an Airbus A320 that took off from La Guardia Airport on January 15. Two minutes after getting airborne, the aircraft sucked some geese into its engines. The aircraft could not safely reach any nearby airports so the pilot ditched the aircraft in the Hudson river. Everyone survived thanks to the quick action and skill of the crew.
Frankly, the passengers are lucky to be alive as a water landing is an extremely dangerous manoeuvre.
The disease I mentioned earlier seems to have afflicted some of those passengers. They’re not happy to be alive. Rather, they’re griping because US Airways gave them free upgrades on any flights they take for a year. See, many of the passengers think they deserve more. After getting thousands in cash for their ruined luggage and the free upgrades, they’re unhappy.
The crash was not the airline’s fault. The crash was not the aircraft manufacturer’s fault. It was a freak accident. The passengers all survived and got cold and wet. But that’s not enough.
A New York Post article details some complaints of these ungrateful passengers:
“I think if you survive a plane crash, being upgraded permanently is a good gesture too,” said Fred Berretta, 41
It would be a good gesture. Another good gesture would be your being grateful to the airline for employing a skilled crew that saved your life, Fred.
Tess Sosa, who escaped the sinking plane with her husband and two small children, thought the airline was too focused on self-congratulations — and “they want to exonerate themselves as much as they can.”
“They are happy they had such amazing results, and they applaud themselves, and then give us a small token?” she said. “That’s how I take it.”
You’re entitled to exactly nothing, Tess. The airline doesn’t need to exonerate themselves because they did nothing wrong. They should be very pleased with the way their people performed. You should be pleased for the same reason. You’d be dead if they weren’t up to the challenge. They offered you what must be a very expensive token as a gesture of good faith. If you don’t want it, don’t take it.
“You’re going to crash me into the water, and you’re going to tell me all I get is an upgrade?” asked Antonio Sales, 20, who was travelling with the University of South Carolina’s track team. “That’s more of an ‘OK, you’re not dead, I’ll give you something to hold on to.’ It’s not enough at all.”
If they would’ve crashed you into the water, you’d be dead. Instead of the water-landing, you would’ve preferred crashing into the ground or a building? So you want the airline to give you a million bucks because they saved you from dying when the cause wasn’t even their fault?
Teammate Gabrielle Glenn, 20, was more blunt: “That’s it. They should sue.”
Who should sue, you ungrateful litigious child? Sue the airline for saving your life? Yea, that’ll go over well.
God forbid people see having their lives saved from the deadly consequences of a freak accident as anything but a reason to get free stuff.
Hat tip to Kevin