American Airlines refuses to board teen with Down Syndrome in first class

Apparently poor customer service at American Airlines isn't limited to conservatives, they also stopped a family with a sixteen year old with Down syndrome from boarding a plane over the weekend! Are they just asking for people to stop flying their airlines?

The Blaze explains:

Robert Vanderhorst, his wife Joan and 16-year-old son Bede, who is disabled, were booked to fly on an American Airlines flight from Newark to Los Angeles on Sunday when the boy and his parents were not allowed on the plane.

The family from Porterville had upgraded to first class tickets at an airport kiosk, and asked the airline to seat the boy and one of his parents together, Vanderhorst said – a request the airline granted.

When the family was ready to board, they were stopped by airline personnel, told their son was a “security risk” and would not be allowed on the flight. The parents protested, and later were rebooked to fly coach with another airline.

American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller said the disabled boy was agitated and running around the gate area prior to boarding, which his parents dispute. The airplane’s pilot observed the boy, Miller said, and made the call based on his behavior.

"There's a reason why American Airlines is on the verge of bankruptcy and trying to figure out how they're even going to survive," Glenn said after reading the story.

"There's a reason why Southwest doesn't have this problem.  There's a reason why you don't ‑‑ you don't see this with JetBlue.  These big stodgy airlines that think they can treat people like garbage.  They can't."

Glenn explained that since he discussed his own horrible treatment from an American Airlines flight attendant on radio, he has received multiple e-mails from listeners who have decided to no longer fly American Airlines.

He read one such email on the air today:

Glenn,

I'm at the Boston airport after a hard day of work and I just read the transcript regarding your experience with American Airlines.  Guess who I'm flying home with.  Yep.  By tomorrow I'm going to write them.  It will be kind and professional.  I'll let them know that I will never fly with them again, and I will donate my miles to charity.  I'm doing this for an obvious reason:  A, the way they treated you; but I'm also doing this because you didn't ask anyone to do it.  You just shared what happened to you.  What the flight attendant forgot or maybe never knew is that his life in America is possible because of our Constitution.  And I think there's something in there about free speech.  Oh, sure, he exercised his, but not in a way that elevates dialogue.  And when he puts on his American Airlines uniform, it is his job to treat all passengers alike, regardless of race, religion, or political opinion.  Interesting, isn't it, that American is going through bankruptcy and Southwest keeps making profits.  The employees at Southwest love their job and they love their customers.  All of them.  But he doesn't love his job, and he doesn't love his customers.  And the truth is anyone who treats another the way you were treated doesn't think much of himself, either.  American Airlines?  I don't think so.  

"I got a lot of these e‑mails, a lot of these e‑mails.  I can't even imagine how many e‑mails American Airlines received.  The way to deal with this is you fire the guy.  He said in front of the pilot, I said 'At least thank you for not treating my children the way you treated me.'  And he said, 'Oh, it was my pleasure; you deserve it.'  He said that to a paying customer.  Now, if that's American Airlines' policy, to treat ‑‑ to allow employees to treat somebody they disagree with like absolute garbage, I'm telling you I was treated worse than a dog would be treated.  If that is their policy, well, good luck with that.  I'll never fly your airline again.  The way to deal with it is to fire the guy," Glenn said.

"Even if you're the evil bastard he thought you were, you still paid for that flight for you and your family and deserve good treatment," Pat said.

"By their silence, that is their policy," Glenn said. " I as an individual have made the choice that American Airlines does not want my money, they do not appreciate me as an individual, they do not count me as a worthy customer."

"There was no problem.  I didn't say a word, not one word.  My wife didn't even know.  She was sitting across the aisle.  She didn't even know what was going on until we got off the plane.  I kept looking at her and she was like, 'What?  What's happening?'   I didn't want to cause a problem on the plane.  So that's not what was happening.  Somebody judged me just on my face.  Just on what they think I am.  I had no exchange with this individual, none.  The only word he uttered in a four‑hour flight was, 'Breakfast?"' That was it.  So there was no problem.  And if American Airlines wants to choose and let their employees judge people, God bless you.  I'm out.  If you want to fly, fly with them," Glenn said.

While Glenn has yet to be contacted by American Airlines beyond the claim that they are "investigating" the issue, the airline has released the statement below regarding the Vanderhorst family:

We appreciate the outpouring of concern for the Vanderhorst family. However, prior to boarding flight 119 from Newark to Los Angeles, our customer service team observed the Vanderhorst teen yelling and running around the gate area – he seemed very agitated. Our team, along with the Captain of the flight, worked with the family for more than 30 minutes to try and calm the teen down. There were times when he was calm, but unfortunately, when it came time to board the flight he became agitated again. We tried to work with the family to come up with alternate solutions, which included an offer to rebook the family on the next flight in order to give the teen time to acclimate to his surroundings. Our customer service team, as well as flight crew, made the difficult decision that it wasn’t best for the teen to travel at that time. We wanted to make sure that the young man, as well as the other passengers onboard, were safe and comfortable during the six-hour flight.

 Ultimately, the family chose to fly another airline, and we helped to re-accommodate the Vanderhorsts.

 American’s actions and procedures are in full compliance with the Air Carrier Access Act. Asking the Vanderhorst family to take a different flight was a decision that was made with careful consideration and was based solely on the young man’s behavior.

In light of the national conversation surrounding the rights of free speech, religion and self-defense, Mercury One is thrilled to announce a brand new initiative launching this Father's Day weekend: a three-day museum exhibition in Dallas, Texas focused on the rights and responsibilities of American citizens.

This event seeks to answer three fundamental questions:

  1. As Americans, what responsibility do we shoulder when it comes to defending our rights?
  2. Do we as a nation still agree on the core principles and values laid out by our founding fathers?
  3. How can we move forward amidst uncertainty surrounding the intent of our founding ideals?

Attendees will be able to view historical artifacts and documents that reveal what has made America unique and the most innovative nation on earth. Here's a hint: it all goes back to the core principles and values this nation was founded on as laid out in the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights.

Exhibits will show what the world was like before mankind had rights and how Americans realized there was a better way to govern. Throughout the weekend, Glenn Beck, David Barton, Stu Burguiere, Doc Thompson, Jeffy Fisher and Brad Staggs will lead private tours through the museum, each providing their own unique perspectives on our rights and responsibilities.

Schedule a private tour or purchase general admission ticket below:

Dates:
June 15-17

Location:

Mercury Studios

6301 Riverside Drive, Irving, TX 75039

Learn more about the event here.

About Mercury One: Mercury One is a 501(c)(3) charity founded in 2011 by Glenn Beck. Mercury One was built to inspire the world in the same way the United States space program shaped America's national destiny and the world. The organization seeks to restore the human spirit by helping individuals and communities help themselves through honor, faith, courage, hope and love. In the words of Glenn Beck:

We don't stand between government aid and people in need. We stand with people in need so they no longer need the government

Some of Mercury One's core initiatives include assisting our nation's veterans, providing aid to those in crisis and restoring the lives of Christians and other persecuted religious minorities. When evil prevails, the best way to overcome it is for regular people to do good. Mercury One is committed to helping sustain the good actions of regular people who want to make a difference through humanitarian aid and education initiatives. Mercury One will stand, speak and act when no one else will.

Support Mercury One's mission to restore the human spirit by making an online donation or calling 972-499-4747. Together, we can make a difference.

What happened?

A New York judge ruled Tuesday that a 30-year-old still living in his parents' home must move out, CNN reported.

Failure to launch …

Michael Rotondo, who had been living in a room in his parents' house for eight years, claims that he is owed a six-month notice even though they gave him five notices about moving out and offered to help him find a place and to help pay for repairs on his car.

RELATED: It's sad 'free-range parenting' has to be legislated, it used to be common sense

“I think the notice is sufficient," New York State Supreme Court Judge Donald Greenwood said.

What did the son say?

Rotondo “has never been expected to contribute to household expenses, or assisted with chores and the maintenance of the premises, and claims that this is simply a component of his living agreement," he claimed in court filings.

He told reporters that he plans to appeal the “ridiculous" ruling.

Reform Conservatism and Reaganomics: A middle road?

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Senator Marco Rubio broke Republican ranks recently when he criticized the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act by stating that “there's no evidence whatsoever that the money's been massively poured back into the American worker." Rubio is wrong on this point, as millions of workers have received major raises, while the corporate tax cuts have led to a spike in capital expenditure (investment on new projects) of 39 percent. However, the Florida senator is revisiting an idea that was front and center in the conservative movement before Donald Trump rode down an escalator in June of 2015: reform conservatism.

RELATED: The problem with asking what has conservatism conserved

The "reformicons," like Rubio, supported moving away from conservative or supply-side orthodoxy and toward policies such as the expansion of the child and earned income tax credits. On the other hand, longstanding conservative economic theory indicates that corporate tax cuts, by lowering disincentives on investment, will lead to long-run economic growth that will end up being much more beneficial to the middle class than tax credits.

But asking people to choose between free market economic orthodoxy and policies guided towards addressing inequality and the concerns of the middle class is a false dichotomy.

Instead of advocating policies that many conservatives might dismiss as redistributionist, reformicons should look at the ways government action hinders economic opportunity and exacerbates income inequality. Changing policies that worsen inequality satisfies limited government conservatives' desire for free markets and reformicons' quest for a more egalitarian America. Furthermore, pushing for market policies that reduce the unequal distribution of wealth would help attract left-leaning people and millennials to small government principles.

Criminal justice reform is an area that reformicons and free marketers should come together around. The drug war has been a disaster, and the burden of this misguided government approach have fallen on impoverished minority communities disproportionately, in the form of mass incarceration and lower social mobility. Not only has the drug war been terrible for these communities, it's proved costly to the taxpayer––well over a trillion dollars has gone into the drug war since its inception, and $80 billion dollars a year goes into mass incarceration.

Prioritizing retraining and rehabilitation instead of overcriminalization would help address inequality, fitting reformicons' goals, and promote a better-trained workforce and lower government spending, appealing to basic conservative preferences.

Government regulations tend to disproportionately hurt small businesses and new or would-be entrepreneurs. In no area is this more egregious than occupational licensing––the practice of requiring a government-issued license to perform a job. The percentage of jobs that require licenses has risen from five percent to 30 percent since 1950. Ostensibly justified by public health concerns, occupational licensing laws have, broadly, been shown to neither promote public health nor improve the quality of service. Instead, they serve to provide a 15 percent wage boost to licensed barbers and florists, while, thanks to the hundreds of hours and expensive fees required to attain the licenses, suppressing low-income entrepreneurship, and costing the economy $200 billion dollars annually.

Those economic losses tend to primarily hurt low-income people who both can't start businesses and have to pay more for essential services. Rolling back occupational licenses will satisfy the business wing's desire for deregulation and a more free market and the reformicons' support for addressing income inequality and increasing opportunity.

The favoritism at play in the complex tax code perpetuates inequality.

Tax expenditures form another opportunity for common ground between the Rubio types and the mainstream. Tax deductions and exclusions, both on the individual and corporate sides of the tax code, remain in place after the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Itemized deductions on the individual side disproportionately benefit the wealthy, while corporate tax expenditures help well-connected corporations and sectors, such as the fossil fuel industry.

The favoritism at play in the complex tax code perpetuates inequality. Additionally, a more complicated tax code is less conducive to economic growth than one with lower tax rates and fewer exemptions. Therefore, a simpler tax code with fewer deductions and exclusions would not only create a more level playing field, as the reformicons desire, but also additional economic growth.

A forward-thinking economic program for the Republican Party should marry the best ideas put forward by both supply-siders and reform conservatives. It's possible to take the issues of income inequality and lack of social mobility seriously, while also keeping mainstay conservative economic ideas about the importance of less cumbersome regulations and lower taxes.

Alex Muresianu is a Young Voices Advocate studying economics at Tufts University. He is a contributor for Lone Conservative, and his writing has appeared in Townhall and The Daily Caller. He can be found on Twitter @ahardtospell.

Is this what inclusivity and tolerance look like? Fox News host Tomi Lahren was at a weekend brunch with her mom in Minnesota when other patrons started yelling obscenities and harassing her. After a confrontation, someone threw a drink at her, the moment captured on video for social media.

RELATED: Glenn Addresses Tomi Lahren's Pro-Choice Stance on 'The View'

On today's show, Pat and Jeffy talked about this uncomfortable moment and why it shows that supposedly “tolerant" liberals have to resort to physical violence in response to ideas they don't like.