In all honesty, young children can be annoying when they first learn to talk, especially for those who aren’t used to kids. However, adults are the ones who need to exhibit patience when dealing with children who are excited when they begin to learn a new skill. However, one-year-old Garren Penland was the victim of an adult who can’t exhibit this patience to young children.

Garren and his mother were getting ready for take off on board a passenger plane when his mother pointed out a plane next to them. When Garren spotted the plane, he started saying “Bye, bye plane,” over and over. This phrase upset the flight attendant on board for one reason or another, whether the noise was distracting to her or upsetting in this post-911 world. After finishing her safety demonstration, she headed back to where Mrs. Penland and Garren sat, leaned over the man sitting next to them, and told Garren’s mother to “shut your baby up.”

Penland told the flight attendant that Garren was expected to fall asleep soon. The flight attendant shot back demanding silence right that moment. She suggested giving Garren Baby Benadryl to help him fall asleep quickly. When Penland refused, the flight attendant told the captain that Penland had threatened her, and he agreed to take the plane back to the gate where the two were told to either voluntarily leave the plane or be removed by authorities. Other passengers came to Penland’s defense, but it was no use.

Many agree that the flight attendant misused her authority in her decision to report Penland to the captain. It is not known whether this was because of the boy’s unusual comment which could be vaguely interpreted to mean that the plane was in danger or if the flight attendant was just having a bad day. The airline later made a statement on “Good Morning America” ensuring that customer service and safety are their top priority and that they are seriously looking into the incident.

Soon, the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee hearings will take place to address the Airline Passenger Bill of Rights Act of 2007 to investigate the impact of airline travel on passengers and reinforce their rights. Such issues will include delays, cancellations, customer service, and the right to leave a plane that has been grounded for more than three hours. Hopefully, these meetings will help prevent future senseless incidents from occurring and focus on true safety and convenience issues.

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