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Teen w/ down syndrome not allowed to fly first class.

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posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:13 PM
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Teen w/ down syndrome not allowed to fly first class.


www.cnn.com

Joan and Robert Vanderhorst say the boy, Bede, was set to fly with them from Newark, New Jersey, to Los Angeles on Sunday when the pilot told them the boy could not fly.
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:13 PM
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American Airlines is saying the teen was "agitated" and "running around the gate area" before boarding.

The family says no such behavior occurred, and the mother got brief video (featured in the link) of the teen calmly sitting and playing with his hat.

They were given tickets for another flight on another airline, and placed at the furthest seats in the back of the coach section.

Now, I wasn't there, and couldn't tell you how the teen was behaving 15 or 20 minutes prior to the short video the mother took, but if his behavior was so bad that it posed a threat to the pilots of the plane, i'm sure some other bystanders would have noticed it and been present to say something.

Even if the teen WAS "agitated" and whatnot, I don't think it could have been a threat to the safety of the flight.

Hell.. How many screaming, annoying, ornery little pukes do they allow to fly on the plane? I'm sure they allow Andy Dick to fly first class... and well... go look at Andy Dick's behavior...

Here's a news broadcast about it too



Cheers.

www.cnn.com
(visit the link for the full news article)
edit on 9-9-2012 by Qemyst because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:20 PM
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Unless anyone was there, it is an impossible call to speculate.

My wife works with DS and having seen with my own eyes some of the behaviour, There could certainly be a risk in allowing on board in a confined space.

Risk to themselves, risk to other passengers, etc.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:23 PM
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reply to post by Qemyst
 


This isn't breaking news, Wed September 5, 2012



"The young man was agitated and running around the gate area prior to boarding," American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller said in a written statement. "Our pilot noticed and asked a customer service manager to talk to the family to see if we could help him calm down and get better acclimated to the situation. That effort was ultimately unsuccessful."


I work with the mentally retarded and I'll tell ya from first hand experience that once they become agitated it can be hours before they calm down, and sometimes they need to be restrained physically. They can't control their emotions and become a threat to themselves and others. Now we're all snowflakes here and not every person with MR has emotional issues, and I dunno this boy or his behaviors or his level of MR but if they tried to help the parents calm the boy down and it didn't work then he is unsafe to fly. It's the same thing when I'm at work, if we're about to go out on the town and do some shopping and Mikey is agitated and not calming down then he isn't safe to go out and must stay behind. Such is life.

Now if the airline is lying and the boy didn't exhibit these behaviors then wtf is up with that? And from watching the video we learn this was the first time they were flying first class and that the boy is no stranger to flying since they've flown many times before. Hmmmm, so was the boy kicked off because they didn't want an down syndrome child in first class or was he the agitated boy AA says he was? The parents say he never acted in such way but AA says they tried to work with the parents to calm the boy down so is blatantly lying? We only see video of the parents being told they cannot board because that's all that was filmed and the boy seemed just fine but that doesn't mean he wasn't agitated prior. But what it does tell me is the boy was fine as they were being told they couldn't board. So it's a case of the parents word against the airlines.
edit on 9-9-2012 by Swills because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:26 PM
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reply to post by magma
 


Yes but a video along with witnesses is hard to dispute.
People are people.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:26 PM
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reply to post by Qemyst
 


IMHO...

This one could go either way. Simply showing a few seconds of video with him eating his hat doesn't prove the parents are right also I seriously doubt the kid gives a Rat's furry butt about this incident and is most likely totally oblivious to it and it sorta sounds like the Parents are after more than showing how wrong they feel they've been supposedly treated.

Conversely, the Airlines should have security footage of the area in question which would in one way or another prove if the people were wronged...

$$$$$

edit on 9-9-2012 by SLAYER69 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:27 PM
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Sometimes people with disabilities like Downs Syndrome make grunts, groans, or engage in other unusual behavior. These behaviors do not mean anything, but they can be disturbing to people who do not understand the disability or know the person with the disability. Perhaps somebody heard the teen make noises and complained.

I hate to sound insensitive, but I can understand why somebody may not be happy about paying first class airfaire and getting stuck next to some strange person who is groaning or drooling all over himself for a few hours. If an able bodied person engaged in the same behavior, nobody would have any qualms with kicking them off the plane or out of first class.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:32 PM
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It's true, some DS children can get very worked up, and be quite a handful, and even be dangerous. I've volunteered at numerous special olympic events and helped out with DS children. I've worked with a LOT of children and teens with DS though, and have probably only seen 1 or 2 kids with DS who were really troublesome.

This teen just doesn't seem like he was being a danger.. but, as I said too, it's possible that 15-20 minutes earlier he was making a scene.

The parents say that what the airline said about having people try to acclimate the teen and calm him down is an outright lie, and that no-one ever said anything.

It could also be true that the teen with DS truly doesn't give a rats ass about the whole incident. If what the parents are saying happened actually did happen, then it's a big deal, and American Airlines needs to be punished.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:33 PM
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ive only flown economy class, but still i'd be super pi$$d of if someone acted like that and i and to sit next to them.
i'm sure we can all be polite and understanding, but you have to draw the line somewhere.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:35 PM
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reply to post by Swills
 


I thought people that work with retarded kids hate the word retard... ? Im not askin negatively, just wondering..



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:37 PM
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reply to post by Kino321
 


You'd be super pi$$ed off if someone next to you in economy was groaning and grunting occasionally, and drooling on themselves, maybe innocently biting the edge of their baseball cap now and again?



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:37 PM
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What a sad world we live in. We come in as Love and end up reduced/regressed to this: well it can be disturbing. NO IT CAN'T FOR ITS CALLED CARING ABOUT OTHERS. Its normal. Give it a try!



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 09:56 PM
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People with down syndrome have an extra chromosome in their genes, which technically does not make them human anyway. The kid probably was creating a disturbance, but they calmed him down right before they took the video.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:00 PM
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A bit more info not listed on the CNN link.

"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.

Vanderhorst said Bede, a freshman at Granite Hills High School in Porterville, about 70 miles from Fresno, is very charming in contact with other people. The family has flown more than two dozen times with him, without any difficulties.

“Usually my son gets his snack and falls asleep, just like most people,” Vanderhorst said. “The problem is this pilot thought my son might not be like most people. He didn’t want a disabled person disturbing other passengers in first class.”

The family says the pilot might have also been affected by the disabled boy’s size – Bede is 5′1 and weighs 160 lbs.

On the second airplane, the family was placed in the last row and no passengers were allowed to sit within two rows of them, Vanderhorst said.

He hoped that airlines would change their mentality when dealing with the disabled.

“It’s ridiculous and groundless to claim that this kid created a security risk,” he said. “It was the pilot’s insecurity. I paid for those seats and there was nothing that should have prevented us from taking that flight.” "

From The Blaze


So, there's the bit more. Still no more video or witness reports of how the boy was acting 15 or 20 minutes earlier, but more info from the father, saying the boy didn't at any time run around or make loud noises.

A fellow high school student even says he's a nice kid when in social environments. From the video and reports, the boy seems to be social enough. Getting on stage at a journey concert (COOL!), participating in special olympics, etc.

Pretty much every kid who have had DS that I have known in high school, from the special olympics and other events, have been very social and kind and easy going. Sure, some were more excitable than others, but never dangerous.

I'm just going to say that SO FAR (again, without knowing how the boy was acting prior) it does seem more like the airline just didn't want him sitting with the other high paying first class folks because they didn't want to get any complaints.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:00 PM
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reply to post by dayve
 


They do but usually when you are saying it as a put down or even using it as a joke, but saying mentally retarded is proper or MR for short. Although there are those who want to changed it from mentally retarded to developmentally disabled. As for me, it doesn't bother me at all, it's just a word.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:03 PM
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Originally posted by DragonRain311
People with down syndrome have an extra chromosome in their genes, which technically does not make them human anyway.


*facepalm*

The only thing true about that statement is that they have an extra chromosome. The rest is utter nonsense.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:17 PM
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Why no sympathy for the others in first class? They have payed a lot of their HARD EARNED MONEY for the privalage and not everyone is comfortable being forced to sit with disabled. Not everyone buys into the liberal/socalist world view about treating disabled people.



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:23 PM
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reply to post by Qemyst
 





I'm just going to say that SO FAR (again, without knowing how the boy was acting prior) it does seem more like the airline just didn't want him sitting with the other high paying first class folks because they didn't want to get any complaints.


Even though in your own post it is stated by the airline that the pilot was not happy with the boys behaviour.




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.


So in actual fact, the pilot made a call based on his observations.

The mother is the one that it making a big deal out of.

Or... someone is lying.

I would say the mother in this case.


edit on 9-9-2012 by magma because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:30 PM
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reply to post by GregAgainstSocalisim
 



Like, really? You're rule is that no disable people are allowed in first class because somehow their money is less valuable than yours? And guess what, you know whose sitting next to their disabled child? The parents, that's who.

Your post is pretty much awful and hateful and if I were you I would delete it. And I also enjoy the comment about socialism AND liberalism as if politics is at all relevant to this thread
.

Welcome to ATS, I think you may have problems here.
edit on 9-9-2012 by Swills because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 9 2012 @ 10:38 PM
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I am the mother of a special needs child. I find that if it takes some time to clam this teen down then why was he calm at the time the mothers video was taken. If he had been agitated a short time earlier then he should have still been in the same state. When my son gets into an agitated state it can take over an hour to calm him down. It just does not ring true.

Also the family had paid the extra for the first-class tickets, yet they were placed in coach. The question is did they get a refund for the difference in price for the tickets.

Over all I disagree with the decision of the pilot and the airline. Disabled people may need special accommodations but they are still people with feelings. Treat them with the same respect as you would want given to yourself.



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