Your Flying Bill of Rights
ALEX CHADWICK, host:
In today's Unger Report, humorist Brian Unger pens a passengers bill of rights that is just shy of a revolution.
BRIAN UNGER: One if by land, two if by sea, and three if by JetBlue, or any other carrier. Take heed, ye Redcoats who stand at your ticket counters, the tyranny is over.
Warning signals alight the Old North Church. Paul Revere has left the building, and country folk are up and arming. For the fate of our nation is stranded on a runway, and it has to pee really bad.
Today, airlines are the gravest threat to basic principles of human liberty. But sadly, the closest we're going to get to a revolution is a mockery of the Bill of Rights authored not by a genius planner of the Constitution, but by a nincompoop CEO who didn't plan for bad weather. For you, the legion of airborne who pay through the nose to be delayed, bumped and stuck, comes JetBlue's sick joke.
If you are imprisoned aboard a plane for more than four hours, you now get a free roundtrip ticket from the sympathetic jailor who put you there. What would James do? James Madison, the father of our nation's real Bill of Rights? How would he right the much-heralded Passengers Bill Of Rights for an industry that lacks any constitution?
Amendment one. Congress shall make laws respecting the establishment of on time departures and arrivals, prohibit the exercise of oops, we're overbooked, and permit a redress of grievances in the form of free cocktails.
Amendment two. The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, unless that arm belongs to a stranger, and is hot and sweaty and stuck to mine, or in my lap, spilling over from a seat an airline made too small.
Amendment three. No passenger shall be quartered on a plane without the consent of that passenger, nor in time of a blizzard, unless of course the plane is aloft at 36,000 feet.
Amendment four. The right of passengers to be secure in their own anatomy against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be violated. Machines that gawk at my manhood go way beyond the war on terror. Trust me, I'm not going to hurt anyone with it.
Amendment five. No person shall be subjected to the same airline twice as to be put in double jeopardy of crappy service. A voucher for future travel should be good on any airline, not just the one that screwed you.
Amendment six. Passengers will enjoy the right to a speedy return of baggage, preferably their own.
Amendment seven. Airlines have the right to a trial by jury until they start taking hostages. Then it's mob rule.
Amendment eight. Excessive wait times on the telephone with outsourced customer service agents will not imposed, nor their cruel and unusually stupid penalties inflicted.
Amendment nine. Abridgment of any rights herein will be settled by 12 rounds of boxing between the passenger and the airline CEO.
Amendment ten. Said bout will take place in the sporting arena that bears the airline's name.
And that is today's Unger Report. Happy flying. I'm Brian Unger.
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