This week I read a social media post from a fairly prominent legal correspondent and author that concerned a recent New York Times article about a family taken off an airplane because of their child’s peanut/nut allergies. The airline claimed they didn’t want to take responsibility for the family because they couldn’t assure that other passengers wouldn’t be eating nut products on the plane. The family stated they were prepared, but because peanut/nut allergies can be fatal, the airline didn’t want to risk it. (The original article: https://goo.gl/3hIGbF.)
Ann Coulter chose to post the article to her Twitter and Facebook pages with the following…
“If your food allergy is so serious that you need to inconvenience 250 other people on the flight, you should drive.”
Her post was appalling and disheartening. As a mother of a child with a serious food allergies, I cannot understand how human beings can so easily stop caring about the well-being of others. This family was not inconveniencing anyone at all, if she actually read the article. They wanted to fly to their destination like everyone else on board that plane, with their epi-pens and antihistamines at the ready (if necessary). (And by the way, their destination was an island, so I think driving was out of the question.) So, what, by her definition, is the inconvenience?
Would it be an inconvenience to ask passengers to not eat any peanuts or nut products during the flight? Would it be an inconvenience to ask passengers to consider the life of another human being over their snack choices? This family did not ask for that, as far as the article is concerned, but would it be so unacceptable to ask the passengers of a flight to enjoy some pretzels or chips instead of a pack of peanuts (or other nut products), just for a flight in order to protect the life of a fellow human being?
Even more enraging were some of the comments left. Many were due to lack of understanding of food allergies from people who surely have never had to deal with them. But there were a few that were disgusting, such as a gentleman who claimed that: “you were not supposed to survive natural selection if you are allergic to the world around you.” For anyone that agrees with such an ignorant thought, you best consider the idea of “natural selection.” Stay away from antibiotics, vaccines, and any other medical treatments and see how well your existence in this world fairs.
What angers me the most about everything I saw after Ann Coulter’s heartless post is that it seems there are too many people in this world who’d rather eat whatever, whenever they want instead of considering the lives around them. They’d rather eat a bag of peanuts on a plane and risk the life of a child, a child like mine who did not choose to be born with an allergy, than partake in another snack for a short portion of time in their lives. What a dismal world we’ve come to live in when grown men and women can so easily ignore the lives of others around them.