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 Category:  Commentary and Philosophy Non-Fiction
  Posted: December 13, 2019      Views: 38

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 ABOUT
BRETT MATTHEW WEST 
You are enjoying another piece of writing penned by the NUMBER 5 RANKED SCRIPT WRITER OF THE YEAR FOR 2019!!!

For 2020, I have decided my concerted efforts in writing on FanStory will be to finalize my book Astatula so many FanStorians have - more...

He is an accomplished novelist and is currently at the #15 spot on the rankings.

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No Ticket To Ride
"My View #1" by Brett Matthew West



(My View is a new series of opinion pieces I plan to periodically pen throughout 2020. You may agree with them or you might even disagree with what's written. Either way, they are my views.)

Is it conceivable the Department of Transportation has finally begun to see the light where so called "emotional support" animals are concerned? One can only hope so in this day and age when multitudes of people claim their "pet" should be treated the same as trained service animals. Perhaps that myth is at long last being debunked, and well it should be.

Before the bellyaching commences, let's look at the reasons that support this stance. There are some well known cases of critters passengers have attempted to pass off as "emotional support" animals. Included in this lot are squirrels, spiders, birds, and slithering snakes...to travel on commercial airliners? C'mon. Really? Are these people serious, or seriously delusional?

Snakes in particular are currently banned by DOT rules. So are these other varmints. However, cats and dogs, who serve zero functions whatsoever as service animals, are currently allowed to travel as if they were. But, hopefully that will change soon, maybe even by the end of 2019 if the airlines have their way. More power to them.

One glaring problem untrained "emotional support" animals present for airline operators is the sheer volume of those appearing, which overwhelmingly abuses the system currently in place. This does not take into account the enormous number of online businesses who sell vests, harnesses, and notes from therapists "confirming" the need for an "emotional support" animal. These notes are readily available for purchase (for the right amount of money, of course) and typically by owners who falsely state their animals provide "necessary" emotional support. Gag me with a serrated-edged spoon because these are wolf tickets I just don't buy.

For the most part, in reality these travelers are simply trying to avoid paying the travel fees for their pets, which can range in the hundreds of dollars. Perhaps these people should get a pet rock. It's rumored those travel for free.

Another complaint some legitimate service dog owners, many of whom are wounded warriors, encounter is "emotional support" animals have created many unwanted confrontations with their service dogs. These so called "emotional support" animals are known to excessively bark in flight and be aggressive towards passengers, service animals, and airline staff. Is there any wonder the airlines want to eliminate them?

Come on DOT, do the right thing and ban all of these animals from flights, or at least stop allowing them to fly inside the cabin of the plane where they have no business being in the first place. We'll have to stay tuned to see how big of cajones the DOT develops where these so called "emotional support" critters are concerned.

ADDED NOTE: I took my son Danny to dinner a couple nights ago at Olive Garden, an "alleged" fairly upscale Italian restaurant. There were not one, but two, dogs at tables adjacent to the booth where they attempted to seat us. These were definitely not service animals and had no markings indicating so. When I asked the manager about the canines, I was informed they were "emotional support" animals. Once again, this helps solidify my position that "emotional support" animals need to be much better controlled and regulated. While I am certainly not anti-dog, some of my best friends I have ever had have had four legs and barked. Most of them were better "people" than several of the two-legged species I have encountered. For a variety of health reasons, "emotional support" animals have absolutely no place in public eating establishments. Are there not certain laws against non-service dogs in restaurants? Needless to say, Olive Garden not only received a written complaint and lost a fairly regular, long-term, customer, but our local health department received a telephone call informing them of the situation. If Olive Garden should be fined over this incident, or perhaps even closed down by the Davidson County Health Department for it, TOUGH!

You didn't ask but that's my view.

Author Notes
Landing Zone, by pfemd, selected to complement my editorial.

So, thanks pfemd, for the use of your picture. It goes so nicely with my editorial.
Pays one point and 2 member cents. Artwork by pfemd at FanArtReview.com

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