The FAA has received about 3,100 reports of unruly traveler behavior this year and issued fines topping $560,000.Flight attendants have pushed carriers to delay returning alcohol sales to coach cabins.Lawmakers have raised alarms and at least one senator is working on a bill to address the issue.
…There isn’t one single reason behind the incidents, according to Ryan Martin, a psychology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, who has studied anger for about two decades. He said a sense of entitlement is a common thread in displays of anger, however.
“What we know is that entitlement is correlated with anger, meaning the more entitled you are the angrier you get,” said Martin, the author of “Why We Get Mad: How to Use Your Anger for Positive Change.”
Another factor behind disruptive behavior could be readily available examples, such as videos online, of others acting out.
“We’ve seen lots and lots of example of people losing their cool and having what I would call tantrums in the last year, very publicly,” Martin said. “Some of that may have modeled a way of dealing with problems for people that isn’t really a healthy, reasonable way to deal with problems.”
Increased anxiety returning to travel might also have heightened tensions, he added, though he noted that one of the better indicators for whether someone will turn violent is that they believe in violence to solve problems in the first place.