01 July 2013

Victor Davis Hanson: "Flying as Torture"

As the Fourth of July nears, be careful of flying.

I have wondered lately whether a weekend in Guantanamo Bay would be all that much worse than flying in the United States. Imagine if we were to treat Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in the manner we accord everyday passengers: put him in a tiny chair, with arms crammed together and tucked between the rests — with another inmate on each side. And then we bolt him down there for eight hours. He has to share his toilet with 100 others. The ceiling is about 5 feet high, the seat continually moving while he urinates. We feed him airline food, make him watch airline shorts on the video, and have him go through a TSA security routine twice a day, all the while telling him that he is scheduled to walk down the hall for his exercise at noon, while we cancel, delay, and reschedule his long anticipated walk.

I have flown a lot in the Third World — Bulgaria, Turkey, and Greece in the 1970s, and lots to and fro from places like Egypt, Libya, and Mexico. But I am not sure anymore whether American air travel is much better. I flew three round trips the last month — California to Wisconsin, California to southern Europe, and California to Washington, D.C. Almost everything that could go wrong, of course, did.

Some of you fly more than others (Old NFO, I'm looking at you), but this will strike a chord with anyone who's braved modern aviation.

h/t to R for bringing this to my attention


Cathy said...

I'm always checking his Works and Days at PJMedia for his latest post. He doesn't often make such personal statements.
I've never enjoyed flying; now I hate it for all the reasons he listed.

Rev. Paul said...

Cathy, I used to like flying, back in the '70s. Now it costs more, and we get ... less.