So who will play Steven Slater in the movie? We're voting for Bill Murray. Or maybe Philip Seymour Hoffman. Any other suggestions?
Clearly,it will be very difficult to choose a jury if the now-famous flight attendant, who cursed out passengers and had a nutty on JetBlue's Pittsburgh to New York JFK flight, goes to trial, and even harder to convict him. So probably what will happen is that there will be a plea bargain, he'll agree to community service, perhaps a fine (which he won't end up paying out of pocket because so many people will donate to his cause). And he'll undergo anger management classes. We're wondering which morning show (Today? GMA?) will get the first exclusive interview. And we'd be very, very surprised if Hollywood isn't already salivating over this.
If you want to know what it's like being a flight attendant, this interview with one on NPR is revealing.
And if indeed "Passenger X" (the woman who may have instigated this whole incident) injured Slater with her bag or with the overhead bin door (and exactly what happened isn't clear at this point and may never be), then shouldn't she come forward and apologize (some people--not us--think that she should have been the one to have gone down that emergency exit).
Should flight attendants get the same protection that New York City Transit workers get? Assault a bus driver, and you're in big trouble (up to 7 years in jail). Sure, there are federal laws requiring passengers to obey crew member instructions, but that's different. And if indeed the woman got out of her seat before the seatbelt sign was turned off, then that was disobeying crew member instructions, and too bad Slater didn't keep his cool and have the Port Authority police detain her.
Can we all just be really nice to flight attendants? I was once on a flight when a passenger shook his half-empty glass at a passing flight attendant and bellowed, "More ice!" Not kidding. I find that a good morning, a smile, and please, and a thank you go a long way. Airline employees have seen their salaries cut, their pensions decimated, and their jobs disappear.
So what should we do with America's latest folk hero? Throw him in jail? Let him off the hook? Give him his own reality TV show? His own airline? You decide.