Why are we making some kind of folk hero out of the flight attendant who went berserk? Everyone has times when they feel fed up with their job. I’ve gotten angry a time or two, usually with a parent or other adult. And maybe if I started screaming obscenities and jumped out a window it would bring attention to the plight of the stressed-out teacher. But during the few times that I’ve really lost my composure and yelled or cried or said something hateful, I’ve felt ashamed. I’ve apologized. I’ve tried to make amends, figure out the problem, and do better the next time. I’ve certainly never felt like I deserved national recognition for behaving badly. I predict this guy will end up with a book and movie deal! Only in America!!! I only hope the “copycats” over the next few months don’t do anything crazier. Have we so quickly forgotten that the last stressed-out employee who made the evening news killed his coworkers?
I can never figure out why we as a society not only condone bad behavior, but are often fascinated by it to the point of admiration. Someone doing a good deed might get thirty seconds of recognition on the evening news and someone who has a fit over their football contract or appears nude or gets arrested or cheats on their wife gets at least three weeks of coverage and makes the rounds of all the talk shows!
My mother taught me to treat other people the way I want to be treated, even if they don’t deserve it. She taught me to always do my best at any job that was assigned to me, even if I didn’t enjoy it. She told me to try to act calm, even if I wasn’t. Maybe the people who behave badly started out on that path by not listening to their mothers.