It’s been a while since I posted. Things have been a little crazy so far this summer but now things have settled down, more or less, and I can get back to posting regularly. And once again I realize how fortunate and grateful I am to have the people I do in my life.
And speaking of grateful, my first post back is going to be about a young man who expresses entitlement and ingratitude to an such an extent he caused a whole plane to turn around 45 minutes into its flight and land back where it took off.
Ali Shahi was on a Sunwing flight leaving Toronto for a vacation in Panama. He asked the flight attendant how much a pack of cigarettes was, and when she informed him of the price and he realized they were twenty-five cents cheaper on the plane than they were where he bought them at the airport, he demanded to be reimbursed. That’s right, he demanded to be reimbursed twenty-five whole cents. Of course this was not going to happen, and the fact that he’d demand something so ridiculous gives a sense of this young man’s (he’s 25) attitude of entitlement.
So he does what any spoiled, badly behaved young man would do: He curses Canada, and becomes more and more animated, destroying things around him, and threatens to blow up the plane. This you cannot do. The plane turned around, and was escorted back to the Toronto airport by two American fighter jets. The SWAT team was called and they stormed the plane, taking Shahi and his girlfriend into custody.
As soon as I heard about this story I waited only a few beats before I heard what I KNEW was coming. Shahi’s family let all of us know that none of this was his fault. He is mentally ill. He suffers from depression. This is the fault of the police and the health system. They did not give him the proper help–even though he had been seen by mental health professionals, and given medication he refused to take. And in the past the police have been called to deal with Shahi but they can’t lock him up for being an asshole (God, how I wish this were possible). And of course we also have the obligatory claims of this young man being bullied for being chubby when he was younger.
Thus completing the Get Out of Jail Free Card, having now touched on all the modern nerve centres of sympathy.
So once again the claim of mental illness is used to excuse really bad behavior. This of course erodes the real and serious consequences for those who have a legitimate diagnosis of a mental illness that can result in seemingly erratic behaviour. I also see this trend developing with silly claims of PTSD made by anyone who just happened to have a bad day. Off the charts rage at being told “no” is not a mental illness–it is a character flaw that frankly I have no time for, especially if it has evolved from the person being indulged and never having to suffer any real consequences for their actions.
So instead of apologizing for his son’s ass-hattery and expressing sympathy for the poor people on the plane who had the shit scared out of them, and had a chunk of their vacation ruined, daddy lays the blame on everyone else. Hmmmm, maybe here is where the roots of junior’s issues lie.
Another tidbit the family divulged is that Shahi had recently lost $6000 of student loan money from gambling. What?! So why is the little prince taking a vacation to Panama? Why is he not working to pay back the money he threw away? It sounds like there have been very few consequences for this man’s behaviour.
And lastly, what I find almost more distasteful than anything else are Shahi’s loud proclamations of how horrible Canada is. This type of ingratitude is something I find infuriating. I’m not a Canadian who is polite to the point of happily indulging the criticism and condemnation of people who have been here for about ten minutes. If you don’t like my home and all that has been given to you, and you don’t want to initiate constructive change through proper channels, then GET THE FUCK OUT.
One thing is for sure: A far too tolerant Canadian justice system will give Shahi nothing more than a slap on the wrist, he will undoubtedly be ungrateful and say horrible things about Canada, he will be indulged, and a law suit will be filed claiming the little prince was traumatized and persecuted.
What could possibly happen: An inquiry will be ordered. The pilots of the plane, and the police, and fellow passengers will be painted by the CBC as mildly racist. A professor of fine arts will write, and have performed, an opera decrying the persecution suffered by young men who only wish to blow up an airplane, and somehow Canadians will feel collectively guilty for even daring to question anything this little prince has done.