[nfbwatlk] Are our rights to speak freely on airplanes still intact?

Debby Phillips semisweetdebby at gmail.com
Thu Mar 26 16:10:02 UTC 2015

Hi all, last night, I was talking to another blind friend and we 
got to talking about canes and dogs and airlines.  Her comment 
first was that people should just use folding canes when flying 
and that would solve the problem.  I said that I did not want the 
airlines to dictate whether I use a folding cane or not.  I don't 
like my folding cane for really long walks, or a lot of usage, 
because it's heavier than the straight NFB cane that I like best.  
Then she said that she believed that we should just comply with 
flight attendant requests and take whatever action we choose 
after getting off the plane.  I said that I did not want my cane 
to be far away from me, like in the front closet.  It could be 
that it won't matter if the plane crashes, whether I have my cane 
or not.  But it could matter, so I want the option of having it 
there.  And I said I wouldn't let them take more.  Or that if I 
did comply, ow would quietly say that their action was not legal, 
and that I would be filing a complaint.  Her response was that I 
should not do that, as the flight attendants would take that as a 
threat, or bullying or some such, and that in this day and age 
with all the terrible things that have happened, we should just 
protest off the plane.  Now of course, this might be the prudent 
thing to do.  But is it the right thing to do? In the end of 
course, we each will have to decide for ourselves.  I said to her 
and to the two husbands, "Don't you see how our rights are slowly 
being taken away? We are afraid to ask someone's name because 
they might be offended and think we are bullying them.  We must 
quietly comply with flight attendant requests, whether they are 
rational, or even legal.  Otherwise we might get thrown off the 
plane, or even worse, turned over to TSA.  If this is what we 
have come to, then perhaps the terrorists on 9-11 have won at 
least a small victory.    Peace,    Debby

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