TODAY'S PAPER
38° Good Afternoon
38° Good Afternoon
Opinion

EDITORIAL: It's too easy to identify just with Slater

We have all been Steven Slater in our hearts, itching to erupt in rage at the treatment heaped upon us at work by some hateful horror show of a human.

But we have also been the hateful horror show, making someone else's on-the-job existence a misery. The wicked truth of Jekyll and Hyde is that they're the same guy. They're us.

Slater is the JetBlue flight attendant who activated a plane's emergency slide, grabbed some beers and fled to his Queens home after repeated altercations with a passenger, allegedly springing from her excessive carry-on luggage, abusive language and atrocious behavior. He is fast becoming a national hero, the man who said, for all of us, "Enough."

He's also been charged with, and pleaded not guilty to, criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and trespassing.

It's likely the woman who drove Slater to this also has a job. It's likely she isn't always treated well by those she comes in contact with at work. It's likely she'd love to tell someone off, grab a few beers, trash some of her employers' property and head home. And maybe, on the way, stop at a convenience store or restaurant and give the clerk or waitress a piece of her mind.

Because it goes around and it comes around, endlessly, and we're all subject to it and guilty of it.

It's easy to identify with Slater, but that won't help. It's only by identifying with his tormentor - owning that behavior, and changing it - that we might do some good. hN

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