Because I've never been on a plane before (my fear of heights, closed spaces, and the general public prevents me from such an adventure), I can't really imagine what it's like when you first go on.
I've always felt that if I were to fly, I'd probably take an anti-anxiety pill, find my seat and breathe my way through the flight.
So I'm pretty grateful that my first airplane ride was not on United Airlines flight 3411 on Sunday when David Dao was pulled, literally, from his seat off of the plane.
No amount of anti-anxiety medication would have helped. But this isn't about me. This is about a man who booked a flight with his wife, paid the air carrier money for their tickets, and boarded a plane only to be dragged out bleeding.
When this all first went down, all we knew was that a man was asked to "voluntarily" give up his seat because they overbooked. When he refused, police were called and they physically dragged the doctor down the airplane aisle on his back while other passengers looked on in distress, some filming the incident.
The video, which you can see below, went viral.
Obviously, that wasn't the right way to handle the situation. In the video, it didn't appear he was a threat. Even the other passengers were concerned for him and upset about the way he was removed.
It turns out he has somewhat of a shady past (the doctor was convicted of illegally prescribing prescription narcotics and even trading prescriptions for sex back in 2005) . But how does that excuse the behavior of United Airlines, its employees or the police officers who dragged this man, bleeding, off the plane?
This man deserved better than what he got. This man deserved to be treated like a human being. We all have that right.
But, as I'm sure you're aware, once something finds its way to the internet it doesn't take long for memes and tweets to pop up that make us giggle, despite our rage against United Airlines continuing to brew.
"If your stock drops like that doctor you punched out that would be really great."
"Fly the friendly skies."
"Southwest—We beat the competition. Not you."
"We are asking politely, y'all. We need four volunteers. Heads up: we are chambered with live ammo."
"Our extra leg room reclining seats now available."
"Yo Adrian. I made it on the plane."
"Welcome to United Flight 3411. We still need three more 'volunteers.'"
"Eeny, meeny, miny, moe ... "
"Board as a Doctor, leave as a patient."
"United Airlines: Where they treat your luggage better than you."
"Coffee, tea, or a savage beating?"
"United Airlines app update supports new drag and drop feature."
"Don't worry. Once we get off the ground, the skies are still friendly."