Unless you are a small child or flying for the first time, airplane flights are a drag. No one takes airplane rides for the fun of it. The whole business of going to the airport way ahead of departure time, going through security, and sitting in a cramped seat for hours, has eliminated any pleasure that the experience may have originally had, at least for me. You do it because you must.
Any person who has ever had their flight canceled at the last minute knows that it causes a real disruption in one’s plans, even if it was just a vacation trip. So it baffles me when people who had planned to travel by air do things that they must know will get them kicked off the plane.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has announced fines totaling $20,000 against two airline passengers who interfered with crews. The civil penalties come as as part of a zero-tolerance policy designed to combat a surge of similar cases in recent months.
The agency said it will seek a $10,500 fine against a passenger who repeatedly ignored orders to wear a mask, which is required by federal regulation, then coughed and blew his nose into a blanket during a JetBlue flight from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to Los Angeles in December.
A second man, who slammed overhead bins and shouted profanities at flight attendants and the captain after boarding a JetBlue flight from Los Angeles to Newark, New Jersey, in March before he was escorted off the plane, faces a $9,000 fine, according to the agency.
The pair of cases comes three days after the FAA announced potential fines against four other passengers. More than 12 passengers have been hit with fines, some of over $30,000, in recent weeks. The passengers have the right to dispute the fines. They have not been identified.
The zero-tolerance crackdown began in January after supporters of Donald Trump created disturbances on several flights to and from Washington DC.
The only explanation that I can think of is that these people thought that they would still be able to fly after acting like this, which makes them kind of stupid, or that they knew they would get fined and kicked off and did it anyway, thinking that history will view them as a modern-day Rosa Parks, which makes them look even more stupid.