The dangers of reading.


I love Vance Gilbert.

It breaks my heart that the guy who wrote THIS:

had to go through THIS:

Flying While Black and Reading Antique Aviation Books

I remember Vance singing that song, with an even longer spoken introduction, at the Boston Music Festival. I got all misty-eyed.

So — what the hell? Since when is reading about airplanes so potentially dangerous that you have to send the plane back to the gate?

Apparently, when the person reading is not white.

And — this is probably the real key — when the people supposedly trying to protect us do not actually know how to use logic and reason.

Far too many stupid things have been done by TSA and the airlines in the name of safety. I don’t have to list them here. Add racism to the mix, and it’s even worse.

My personal suggestion: HIRE SMART PEOPLE. Oh, yeah — You’ll have to pay them well. Smart folks don’t come cheap.

So, spend some money. Think of what you’ll save on public relations, and lawsuits.

Apparently United Airlines is going to discuss the incident with Mr. Gilbert. I’m going to keep an eye on this, to see what happens next…

(You can read about it on Vance Gilbert’s own blog here.)

Update: here’s the Atlantic’s coverage and comments, including some photos of Mr. Gilbert.

6 Responses to “The dangers of reading.”

  • Sabine Says:

    Well, in this case it appears it was the airline staff that was stupid, but still. I get depressed for the future when I think of all the dumb people in the world. Where are the rockets to take them to other planets?

  • Sabine Says:

    Well now that I heard the song, I’m even more outraged at his treatment. What a touching song!

  • sophie Says:

    Rosemary–Thanks for speaking up. It is upsetting to me on a global level. It is heart-breaking that it happened to someone like Vance.

  • Ita Says:

    That is just crazy. Sadly, black = Muslim = evil terrorist. The flight attendant started it all, so really, it’s her fault. A shame the others didn’t have any good sense and rein her in.

  • Melinda Fleming Says:

    Sent this to everyone I know. Why don’t more people know about this? It’s just aaaaarggg!!! The song is a thing of beauty & soul.