whose wrong, the parents w maskless 2 yr old or united airlines

I can't fly, but I am well aware that regs say anyone who is at least 2 must wear a mask-no exceptions, not even for a disability such as autism where the child can't tolerate a mask.

parents who fly frequently including during covid (to visit relatives), had no intention of trying to get a mask on the daughter who I believe is almost 3.  They didn't even have a mask for her.

the airline gave  them a adult size disposable mask.  In the video, the father halfheartedly asked if she wanted to wear it.

the parents berated united for kicking them off the flight, claiming they were humiliated and traumatized and it was all united faults.

If I had a kid, I would have cartoon or animal masks the child could pick from.  I would have made sure, she would normally wear a mask.  I would have done pretend play and made a game out of it.


Is the family really the victims?  Banning for life seems a little extreme, but they were uncooperative and refused to accept responsibility.  And the airline says the parents are lying...they were not banned.  Was it their responsibility to accept  for not being prepared to mask their daughter?

There is a TV show about problems on flights...and it shows a lot of passengers being uncooperative, but rarely do they get banned for life unless its a severe issue (physical aggression).

https://www.radio.com/news/united-airlines-bans-family-for-life-over-face-mask-mishap

here's another one...it does sound like the agent says they are barred...but then its mumbled...and notice how dad's mask is under his nose...and he reasons that is okay because only 1% of people that get sick die.

https://abc13.com/health/family-says-they-were-kicked-off-flight-due-to-2-year-olds-mask-violation/8747862/

I actually know someone whose 7 month old got very sick, didn't need to be hospitalized but it was bad.


Airlines gotta learn that some of us are entitled. Why, even here in Maplewood, we have entitled people. They make illegal U turns in da vill. They park like tools. They want our schools open and balls to everyone else who might get sick,  like the faculty.

Difference is, we cater to our entitled residents. We give 'em front page newspaper coverage, feature them on M.O.L.  ..... We love our entitled residents.


If I had to place blame anywhere, I would blame the community spread means of transmission of the virus which contributed to this and so many other related problems over the past 10 months.  We are in the throws of a pandemic.  State of Emergency has been declared just about everywhere.  This justifies special measures such as requiring everyone over age 2 to properly wear a face covering when riding in an airplane.  That regulation is not very different from requiring everyone to properly wear a face covering in a supermarket or doctor's office.  These are all shared indoor spaces where someone, in the case of an airplane flight, passenger or crew, can get deadly sick  or develop a life-long major disability from an infection with COVID 19.  I would not fault the airline with trying to keep people safe.   

I don't have all the facts regarding the incident described by the OP.  I don't know how essential it was for that family to board an airplane when they did. I don't know if any of the family members were infectious at the time. I don't know if the parents had a toddler appropriate face covering with them in the passenger compartment or whether the two year old in question had been trained to wear one.  I do know the difficulty one faces in trying to get the average two year old to accept wearing a face covering and keeping it on for the duration of flight.  It may not have been possible for them to get the child to wear a face covering during the flight.

The right here is to err on the side of preserving life and keeping everyone safe.


According to the husband, they were traveling to New York for the weekend.

Here's New York's travel advisory for people arriving in New York:

For any traveler to New York State from a noncontiguous state, US territory or CDC level 2 or level 3 country, the new guidelines for travelers to test-out of the mandatory 14-day quarantine are below:

  • For travelers who were out-of-state for more than 24 hours:
    • Travelers must obtain a test within three days of departure, prior to arrival in New York.
    • The traveler must, upon arrival in New York, quarantine for three days.
    • On day 4 of their quarantine, the traveler must obtain another COVID test. If both tests comes back negative, the traveler may exit quarantine early upon receipt of the second negative diagnostic test.

Were the couple tested? Where were they headed to? If they were there for a weekend, they would either be stuck quarantining at a relative's house for the whole weekend, or stuck in a hotel. It's just not worth it.

I had to travel to the UK last month for my sister's funeral. I quarantined at my niece's place the entire time I was there except to go to the funeral, and to see my Mum for one day (both allowed within the UK lockdown restrictions). I was tested pre-flight as part of a United pilot scheme (got my negative results within 15 minutes), and when I got back I had pre-arranged another test at Weequahic Park 3 days after I landed and quarantined at home until I got the results 5 days later. It's sad that this had to happen this way, but airline workers have their health and the health of other passengers to deal with when making these decisions. 

In this case, with the details outlined in the ABC article, the family made a poor choice to travel to a place where they would be locked in a room together for a weekend. There's no wrong or right here, two groups of people had decisions to make, and both of those decisions together resulted in that family getting thrown off the flight.


For the record, I'm getting tested again tomorrow for another trip to the UK next week for what will highly likely be my final Christmas with my Mum. They're allowing that much in the UK right now. And again, I'll be staying mostly at my niece's and have booked a hotel for the rest. 

Having said that, this all depends on the Thursday storm and whether there'll even be a flight out Friday night.


it was NOT essential at all.  they were going for a social visit with friends or family, apparently not close family as it was people they hadn't seen in a few years.

Also, they were coming into NJ.....without a mask for the 2 year old.  NJ requires masks for 2+.  Colorado exempts under 10.  So they were planning on violating NJ/NY covid regs also.  NY says 'over age 2' some will argue that means age 3.....but 2 years 1 day is 'over age 2'

They said they traveled 4x since covid (with the kid not wearing a mask).

media is making the family out to be innocent victims, but what stands out is the fact that they didn't even have a mask for the kid...had no intention of even trying to get a mask on her...and are traveling against social distancing guidelines...to visit people for do not appear to be close family/friends (I highly doubt they plan to social distance/wear masks together)....

if they had at least planned to mask the kid (and detailed how this visit was going to be following covid guidelines), i would have sympathy for them....

i wonder if they were flying into newark to avoid NY restrictions.


A lot of people turn into entitled a@@holes when they fly.  I'll throw these parents into the mix.

They clearly intended on not following any COVID guidelines when arriving in the NY/NJ area.  Just stay home, it's not hard to stay home when your trip is unecessary.


I’m not sure about the specific circumstances here, but there are children, even older children, who have sensory issues about their hair and face that can be extreme.


annielou said:

I’m not sure about the specific circumstances here, but there are children, even older children, who have sensory issues about their hair and face that can be extreme.

 So therefore, nuts to everybody else?  My kid got a sensory issue. Then how 'bout your kid stays off the plane?


there are even adults with sensory issues, while many learn to tolerate them by adulthood, not all do.  I developed sensory issues from brain trauma as an adult.

the airlines are clear...NO MEDICAL exceptions to the mask policy.  if you have a legit medical reason you can't tolerate a mask, you need to find alternate transportation.  There has been a story about  an older kid with autism....the parents knew the rule, knew the kid wouldn't wear a mask, but chose to get on the plane anyway...without even trying to contact the airline to see if there was anything that could be done.

its the same problem as emotional support animals...most were fakes, not really needed...so they changed that law and no ESAs are allowed on planes anymore...if they can fly in the cabin as a pet, the owner can pay the fee and bring it on as a pet...but no more ESAs to accommodate disabilities.

ACAA is the airline disability rights law....accommodations under civil rights laws must be reasonable...exposing people to a deadly illness is not a reasonable accommodation.


if someone who can't wear a mask needs to travel, they need to take a car or train or boat....if it is some medical need to travel (ie to a specialized hospital for medical care), they can try to arrange a medical flight...there is a volunteer org that does medical flights.

due to the complexity of my  medical needs, I can never fly....a 2 hour flight is at minimum a 6 hour day.  I can't sustain for that long.  I also can't risk being trapped on a plane on a tarmac for an extended period as I won't have access to what I need to manage my health..i would be okay for a couple hours, but not much longer than that.....but even if I could otherwise fly, I've never made it longer than an hour with a mask on before I had issues with lightheadedness (from breathing in hot air since I have issues with temp regulation) or severe pain (due to allodynia)...I wouldn't be inconsiderate of others and get on a plane...especially  not just to go have fun...

i worked with kids with autism and other developmental disabilities..i understand the issue, i also understand that there are limits to accommodating a disability...for example, a service dog can go almost anywhere...but there are a few exceptions....such as an operating room.  if you are a medical worker with a service dog, you can't work in surgery....accommodations can't violate health and safety.

some people have every excuse in the book they can't wear a mask in a store for even 15 minutes....but then they can't even show any consideration by distancing.  I was in Walmart with 2 AHs within 3 feet behind me in line...1 without a mask.  The next day I was in petco...at least those 2 standing a couple feet behind me had masks...  even if they did have a disability that affects their perception of space, how likely is it the companion doesn't understand either...and they can't even stand on a spot on the floor that marks off 6 feet?  frankly, if you can't manage to stand on a spot, you shouldn't be unattended.

Colorado doesn't require masks until kids are 11.....its seems the parents never taught the kid to wear a mask before hand...i suspect most toddlers/preschools needed to be introduced to mask play at home and for short trips in public...i doubt these parents ever attempted to do that.

on FB, people are saying mother is an influencer...and every indication this is just a money making game for her.


Update. Based on the upcoming storm news, plus news that London is about to go back into lockdown again, I canceled my flight.


I’m sorry to read that, ridski.


DaveSchmidt said:

I’m sorry to read that, ridski.

 Thanks, safer all round, though. Planning for March now.


ridski said:

Update. Based on the upcoming storm news, plus news that London is about to go back into lockdown again, I canceled my flight.

 I'm sorry you felt the need to cancel your trip.  That said, given the news this morning about a much more contagious strain of COVID-19 being identified in the United Kingdom, I think you made the right decision.


joan_crystal said:

ridski said:

Update. Based on the upcoming storm news, plus news that London is about to go back into lockdown again, I canceled my flight.

 I'm sorry you felt the need to cancel your trip.  That said, given the news this morning about a much more contagious strain of COVID-19 being identified in the United Kingdom, I think you made the right decision.

 Definitely.


ridski said:

joan_crystal said:

ridski said:

Update. Based on the upcoming storm news, plus news that London is about to go back into lockdown again, I canceled my flight.

 I'm sorry you felt the need to cancel your trip.  That said, given the news this morning about a much more contagious strain of COVID-19 being identified in the United Kingdom, I think you made the right decision.

 Definitely.

 Considering Boris Johnson just canceled Christmas, I definitely, DEFINITELY made the right decision.




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