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Leave the airlines out of it

There seems to be a lot of people (or at least, letters to the editor) intent on either reprimanding or hailing Qantas and Air New Zealand for their policy of not allowing men to sit next to unaccompanied children.

Because, I mean, people, let’s face it. All men are paedophiles. If you seat a child next to a man, he will undoubtedly start grooming the child, no matter how respectable or virtuous he is (if that’s even possible). And the only way around this is to seat the child next to a woman, because there is no such thing as a female paedophile: at least not a convicted one because until April this year, consensual sex with minors could only be charged against males.

Okay, I’m off the point. The fiasco that everyone’s getting so hyped up about needn’t be so big a deal at all. It has somehow sparked a giant debate about the seating policies of airlines — I don’t quite fully get how. It seems to me the only thing about this was that, when they failed to realise Mark Worsley was a paedophile, and then found out, they moved him rather than the child.

This isn’t really so much about "political correctness" (which, I reckon, has nothing at all to do with any of this), "sexism", "safety", or things like that as it is about moving someone who had already settled down into their seat. If it concerns the child, shouldn’t the child be moved? Doesn’t that make more sense?

I doubt the airlines’ discriminatory seating policy was a safety thing, more just the demand and probably constant requests of their passengers and concerned parents. These people probably forced them to implement the policy, after requesting it time and time again. And, well, you’d expect a company to follow its customers’ wishes, if for no other reason than to maintain a decent reputation, and, well, because it cares about its passengers.

This whole thing wouldn’t have even started if the child was moved, rather than the adult. Or, perhaps, just that one time, the staff could’ve kept an eye out. In fact, in a plane full of people, you’d think no-one would dream of doing anything like that because they’d surely be seen — then again, judging by that theft I saw yesterday (December 3), no-one would probably care.

But really, stop harassing the airlines for these "politically correct" (or incorrect) or "ensuring safety" or whatever-you-want-to-call-it policies. It seems to me they’re just doing their best to ensure the satisfication of their passengers, probably without spending days pondering over political correctness and whether or not men are really all paedophiles.

Anyway, should children be flying unaccompanied at all? Fair point, isn’t it?

Related links

  • NZ Herald: Ban on men sitting next to children 29 November
  • NZ Herald: Readers respond: Airlines demonise male passengers 30 November
  • NZ Herald: Airline seat row goes to commission 1 December
  • NZ Herald: Editorial: Airlines protecting children 1 December

  • For those that did not realise, the part about all men being paedophiles was indeed complete (Socratic) irony. And the part about Worsley being a paedophile was ironic too.

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    3 Comments Post a comment
    1. Elena #

      so are u saying that ur gonna grow up to be a paedophile?

      5 December 2005
    2. DiPro #

      I completely agree with you on your overall view of leaving airlines alone. However I beg to differ with your logic. All men are not paedophiles are nor do they have to be in order for the airlines to take precautionary measures. It is important to recognise that airlines are very volatile industries and a sex scandal would inevitably ruin their image. Furthering on, it is a business\’s right to determine its own policies especially those regarding safety. I find it rather childish that grown up men are complaining about being asked to move and am perturbed by the unnecessary chatter of the media. And I do believe that if men really want to sit next to children then they travel by bus!

      5 December 2005
    3. Chris #

      umm you do realise he was being ironic?

      5 December 2005

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