Hey, you know how some people whine that women and gays are asking for “special treatment” when they are really only asking for equal treatment?
Well, here’s the latest group demanding special treatment — special, not equal. A group of Orthodox Jewish men caused trouble on a flight because they refused to sit next to women, which they believe would make God angry or something. And then they complained that because they were not given special treatment, they were being discriminated against. You know, in the same way Christians who don’t get exclusive right to post their religious commandments in public places are discriminated against.
Now, don’t take this the wrong way. Sometimes there really is religious discrimination (especially against Muslims) and it has nothing to do with special treatment, but instead about equal treatment. That’s not the case here.
It is nice when businesses do their best to accommodate people with special needs, which includes religious requirements. I’m sure if these men had contacted the airlines beforehand and made seat reservations (which can be done online), the airlines would have been more than happy to help them. But to show up and then harass women into moving from their seats (including insisting that they move away from their husbands and family) doesn’t make anyone think “Oh, those poor people, being discriminated against because of their religion.”
I wish I could make demands like these guys did when I get on an airplane. “I’m sorry, but my religion forbids me from sitting next to grossly overweight passengers or screaming babies.”