By Jon Keller

BOSTON (CBS) – See if this anecdote from a USA Today story about obnoxious air traveler rings a bell with you.

A flight was diverted because a passenger had a severe asthma attack. After landing at the detour airport, a female passenger rushed the crew as they were working on the poor guy and “demanded they take off immediately.”

“This is ruining my vacation,’ screamed the passenger,” who was removed from the plane in handcuffs after spitting in a police officer’s face.

USA Today calls this an example of burgeoning “me-first” behavior by travelers who decide the stress of the experience entitles them to act like very spoiled, very aggressive toddlers.

Think of that moment when your plane comes to a stop at the terminal and most of the passengers jump up like they were shot from a cannon, grab their overstuffed bags (sideswiping you in the process if you’re not alert) and then stand there for 15 minutes waiting for the exit line to start moving, mini-volcanoes of anxiety.

But you and I know this phenomenon is nothing new, and is not limited to airplanes.

How many times on your commute are you passed recklessly or cut off by some maroon who winds up right in front of you at the next stop light? I’d say it happens to me at least three times a week, and my commute takes all of seven minutes.

USA Today offers all sorts of speculation about why people act this way, but the bottom line is there’s no excuse for it.

If you don’t know that waiting your turn or unexpected delay is a part of life, you probably shouldn’t ever leave the house.

Good manners aren’t – or at least shouldn’t be – a frill. They are what allows society to function.

And that is a process the “me-first” crowd ignores at their peril, and ours.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.


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