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August 17th, 2010
08:36 AM ET

Mom slaps crying baby while on board plane, flight attendant takes baby away….

A Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant thought one mother took things too far when she and other passengers witnessed the mother slap her crying baby in mid-flight.

So, the flight attendant took the baby away. The Flight attendant did return the child to its parents before the plane landed.

But they were greeted by police when they got off the plane. Police did check on the child and determined there were no signs of physical abuse.

Police then returned the child to the parents…they weren’t cited.

Do you think the flight attendant did the right thing or do you think she went to far? Email us your comments, Kyra Phillips will read some of your responses in the 10am hour of CNN Newsroom


Filed under: Anchors • Kyra Phillips
soundoff (151 Responses)
  1. Manish Agarwal

    Attendent did right in the flight but reporting to police was taking it too far. Considering a parent will not hit a child unless he is forced too I am sure they were not criminals.

    The child might be restless and wanted to run in flight.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:45 am |
  2. Carla

    Kyra,

    Did anyone ever consider that this poor baby's ears were probably hurting. If she was screaming a high pitched scream that is not just a crabby baby, that usually indicates pain in a child. At least it did with mine and my grandchildren. I think the flight attendant did the right thing.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:55 am |
  3. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    Slapping a baby is going to only make matters worst if the baby is crying then there's a reason the parent may not have intended harm but the flight attendent could have assisted without creating media coverage .

    August 17, 2010 at 8:55 am |
  4. Mike

    People need to calm down about this issue. Why do you think the pregnancy rate amongst young children is up. Why do you think child violence and bullying is on the rise? Parent s NOT stepping up and disciplining their children. The flight attendent like everyone else needs to mind her own business. When the child grows up to be responsible and disciplined you can thank the mom then. This is ridiculous. Is this even news?

    August 17, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  5. katherine

    the attendant was correct in removing child,parents are not always attuned to the children's discomfort on flights and that ear pain causes them to cry usually

    August 17, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  6. Bryan

    They should NOT have given the child back to the mom. I have seen so many moms hit the their children here in Saint Louis Missouri. It's outrageous. I have seen it on public transportation. I have called the police. They do not do anything.

    They should be put in jail. Parents should not slap children.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  7. Jordan W

    I think the police chief put it best, well handled by the flight attendant and the airline and let the lesson be learned by the mother and other parents out there. Every aspect of the case was handled correctly and it seems to me and the chief that the right judgment call was made by giving the child back to the parents without pressing charges.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  8. nancy

    The flight attendant and the airline did the RIGHT thing. It would be a shame if the baby was not taken away to check for more signs of abuse and was actually being abused. As a society, we are taught to protect those who cannot protect themselves, especially children, and that is what the flight attendant and airline was doing it.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:56 am |
  9. nick

    in my opinion i believe she was wrong her child was way to young for any type of physical discipline, i have 2 kids of my own and i feel she should be investigated

    August 17, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  10. Chelsea, Breckenridge, CO

    In my opinion, this is a nothing fluff story that didn't deserve national coverage over the many other consequential events that happening.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  11. Fred Eric Stern

    Not a good move from the airline in flight personnel. Only a law enforcement officer should have the authority to take that child from the parents.
    Bye for now.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  12. Beyond-The-Political-Spectrum.blogspot

    Granted child abuse in America is an issue, I think we have become a nation of weak-willed adults ruled by out-of-control children and teens who have been given way too many rights. Part of this is due to the fact that parents aren't allowed to discipline their children WITHIN REASON. A slap or a whipping that doesn't maim is NOT "ABUSE." Sometime we just have to mind our own business when it comes to the way a parent disciplines their child

    August 17, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  13. Susan Day

    As a parent with a small child, it can be very frustrating when your young one is screaming incessantly be it in a restaurant or a on plane because we do not wish to disract or be a burden to other patrons/passengers. In this case, the mother slapped the baby on the leg, and not the face, which I have done numerous times just to get my child's attention. And you know what, it worked. I would definitely not call that "abuse".

    August 17, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  14. Eddy from Virginia

    Hi Kyra,
    I think the flight attendant absolutely did the right thing!! To me, it was totally in the best interest of the child, and according to the police chief, she even calmed the child and got her to go to sleep. Kudos to the flight attendant!

    August 17, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  15. Jean

    Sorry but I don't agree with this. I think this is why we have so many kids who end up in the criminal justice system. Parents authority has been taken away. Yes, I smacked both of my children (on the rear end and on the mouth) which, unfortunately by today's standards would have been considered child abuse, and they both turned out to be fine, upstanding adults,

    August 17, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  16. Nancy

    I hope people don't jump to conclusion on this. No marks on the baby? How long was the baby crying? Why was the baby crying? Had the mom tried other methods to ease the crying? So many questions unanswered. SW airlines has had some bad press re their treatment of passengers (overweight, style of dress, etc) which makes me wonder if there wasn't some kind of 'over reaction' on this. Physical contact between the mom & baby should have been the course of last resort...

    August 17, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  17. ma

    OMG, the attendant should've been helpful,not snatch the baby. And according to your report,the baby fell asleep after she took the baby. I wonder how long afterward.
    Obviously the baby was exhausted and needed to sleep. Give me a break. The mother was most likely feeling pressured to not "disturb" the other passengers. I know,I've raised 3 daughters & have 5 grandkids.
    So many times even when you walk in a restaurant you get glares from adults because you have babies,kids with you.
    So instead of assaulting the mother, putting her hands on that baby, which the attendant had NO Right to do,she should've offered to help.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  18. mvwolf

    no if slap on leg face yes

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  19. John Bolger

    This 13-month old baby couldn't communicate the "why" she was crying. The mother was wrong to slap her. I don't believe that disciplining a child is wrong but at that age a slap is not an effective method to calm an upset baby.

    The flight attendant may have felt she was doing the best thing by taking the baby. I wasn't there but would add that communication and attempting to calm the mom may have worked also. It sounds like the situation worked out well for all parties.

    John

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  20. H. Doyle

    There have been times when I witnessed abuse and did not have the courage to either speak out or interfere I remember a man abusing an elderly woman in a wheel chair. I wanted so much to do something. I was afraid he would turn on me. I was in a department store and he was leaving. There was nothing I felt I could or should do at the time. I still regret it.
    If I were on the plane I would feel good that someone with authority stepped in and took action. We cannot always look the other way

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  21. Kalin

    It is absolutely radiculous how unouthorized individuals are allowed to have rights over parent-children relations in certain situations. It should be the flight attendand that is arrested.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  22. Peter

    There is nothing worse than a crying baby on a flight. So if the attendant managed to stop the crying – great! BUT. It hardly sounds like child abuse. Parents slap or hit their children all the time. My mother slapped me more times that I care to remember. I survived it okay. I don't necessarily recommend it, but sometimes it is unavoidable. It's a lot better than ending up with bratty children who become bratty adults. God know we have enough of them running around.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  23. Marilyn Little

    The mother had to stop the screaming and a slap on the leg didn't hurt the child. A slight slap on the mouth wouldn't hurt the child either. Thirteen month olds can be very difficult and in tight quarters like a plane everyone gets upset with a crying child that is obviously angry.

    The flight attendant did the right thing but the police need to stay out of it. The mother was embarrassed enough by the incident. The police didn't need to be called, that's going too far.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  24. kristina hardy

    I think everything was handled right. There are a lot of kids that are actually being abused and can't get help. Just having everything checked out to make sure what no other signs of abuse on the baby saved her life. U never know now these days

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  25. Teri

    This will probably be another abused child that we will eventually read about. If the mother slaps the child in front of all those people I can only imagine what she does behind closed doors. It is so sad to read in the papers every day about parents abusing their children so bad that sometimes it leads to their death. I just dont know what the world is coming to... there are so many deserving women who want children and cant have them and unfortunately too many women who have them who dont deserve them......

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  26. ANGELA HERNANDEZ

    The airlines all of them bear some responsibility. Let us not forget women and children being kicked off of flights for screaming children.She may have had that fear in mind and felt the rush to calm the child,It does not make it right to slap the child however it does not make her a bad parent. I do understand the same fear flying with my grandchildren and being afraid this may happen to us. What do you do after being kicked off a plane with your children. This should not be allowed anyway.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  27. Andres Gonzalez

    If the her child was misbehaving on the flight then no I do not believe the mother was out of line. On MSNBC, they reported the "baby" is not even a baby but a older child( I dont remember reported age). Society has changed but one thing that should never be questioned is how parents discipline their children; and of course abuse is intolerable and there is a thin line between discipline and physical abuse.

    August 17, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  28. sean

    air travel is very stressfull for the strongest parent. it wasn't very smart of the mom to slap the child because if a child is crying what is going to happen when you slap her? she will cry louder. Sounds like she is a new mom and I hope she learned something.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:00 am |
  29. Kay

    I believe that the flight attendants over stepped their boundary. This counttry has gone to far. My child, my right to spank my child. There is NO CRIME in spanking your child, that is what is wrong with this country. But yet the people that scream abuse are the first ones to state how out of control children are and the parents are responsible. A friend of mine has 5 yr old, who doesn't believe in spanking, he reasons with the child, as the child repeatedly kicked, slapped, through rocks at my dog, poked it with a stick. My friend smiled and said, "Now why are you doing that, what did the dog do to you." What is wrong with this country.
    I have 3 grown children so don't say I don't have children, that I wouldn't understand.
    People back off, unless the parent is out right lost control of themselves, mind your own business.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:00 am |
  30. Robert

    what are we coming to, now a Flight attentand has the right to take a baby from its mother becauser the mother "supossedly" slapped the child, next will they arrest the parents for " not good parenting " . Flights are stressfull, for parents and for kids ! So lets just all CALM down !

    August 17, 2010 at 9:00 am |
  31. Rene Ballesteros

    It would be better that anyone, flight attendant, paramedics or police, provide SUPPORT to a struggling parent/s instead of diminishing their authority, specially in this case where makes it to national news.Should this be a case of serious(death threatening) risk, by any means please rescue the victim.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:00 am |
  32. Steve

    Not being there I cannot make a accurate judgement call on this but based on what was reported I feel that the flight attendant overstepped her authority by taking the child. If the child was actually being beat then there would be justification, but a slap does not constitute a beating.

    Personally, I feel that people traveling with small children should be separated from others so that the child's natural behavior will not be a disturbance to the other passengers.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  33. SHP

    I really think the attendant went to far, she could of just asked the mother if she could help calm the toddler down. But to take her toddler away into the arms of a stranger is ridiculous to me, parents have the right to discipline their children (without abusing them) as the choose. And a little spanking shouldn't be grounds for an investigation. We as Americans hate violence but yet we approve the death penalty.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  34. Connie Norton

    No one should ever slap a baby. The flight attendant absolutely should
    have removed the child from the Mother. This is not an appropriate
    response to a crying baby – and a good Mother would know this
    automatically. Marriage and parenting are not taught. Having
    taught for my career I have seen to many abused young people
    and I hate to see it start out with babies. It is much to common.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  35. Jean Hauser

    I believe it was Ok for the flight attendant to temporarily take the child from its' angry mother. . .The mother could have used other means of corrective action.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  36. Willa DuBois

    The reaction per the flight attendant and the subsequent notification of the authorities is ridiculous. When I was young, parents disciplined their out-of-control children and no one ever called the police! Our society is becoming wimpy and too sensitive!

    August 17, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  37. Karen

    I think that the flight attendant did the right thing and took the baby away and see if the mother or parents have calm down. Yes, this is true there are a lot of parent around the world who need parenting on there children. Abuse has gone to far but, it depends on the problem.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  38. Monique, Ottawa

    I think she absolutely did the right thing by contacting police, perhaps not by taking the baby. On a british air line last summer, I witnessed a man striking his child and telling him he'd get a spanking again if he didn't stop crying. I was shocked and said so out loud so the parents could hear me. No one else said or did everything. I kept on wondering if I should do something but wasn't sure what more I could do other than stare at them once in a while. I heard the wife tell the husband to cool it because I was watching. Now, after hearing this story, I would inform the airline staff and ask them to contact police.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  39. Laura

    I think that it depends on how she slapped her. Did she open hand her across the face? Was it on her backside? Hands? How old was the baby? Children respond to different dicipline techniques. You can expect a mother to change the way she diciplines her child in public because someone doesnt agree with it, unless it is abuse. If she had not have done anything, someone would have something to say about her not being a good parent because of that. That's what's wrong with most kids now, parents have to be scared that some flight attendant is gonna take their baby so the child has no dicipline. I wish someone would try to take my baby, I might have gone to jail coming off of the flight for another reason than diciplining my child.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  40. Elayne Greenberg

    Yes, the flight attendant did the right thing. The baby was probaly in physical pain. The tubes in infants' and toddlers' ears do not readily "pop", causing painful pressure in the ears. Parents need to give their infants and toddlers decongestant and/or a pacifier to help relieve the pressure.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  41. Lois Kelly

    Dear Kyra,I think the flight attendant was absolutely correct in taking the child.You never know when child abuse is real.So always assume it is. things can be straightened out later,but the child will be safe.Thank You Sincerely Lois Kelly

    August 17, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  42. Jim

    This is a sad day if it has become a criminal offense to spank your children. Although it does not help to spank a 13 month old child because they do not understand that they are doing anything wrong. They just know how uncomfortable it is to fly at his/her age. The mother should have given the baby some milk or sweet juice to make him swallow.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  43. sharon bogney

    well, i most say that slapping a 13months old girl may be an over reaction on the mother's part but i think that the overall view that we have to discipline of a child is fundamentally depraved. Children need discipline and discipline doesn't kill a child but helps them to be shaped for the future.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  44. Rich

    the question is, did the flight attendant offer to help the mother or did she/he just take the child from the mother by force?
    If the child was taken by force, then the flight attendant was wrong, tho her/his intentions were good, but mother knows best when a child is throwing a tantrum.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  45. Cassie

    I do not think the flight attendant had the right to take the child away from the parent. IF the flight attendant saw physical marks on the child I would agree with taking the child from the parent.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  46. Roger Johnson

    I believe the flight attendant was wrong. I always hear people say that parents no longer control their children. But now when they do take charge the first thing you here is child abuse. A small slap at the tender age of 13 months is not extreme the child is learning that certain behavior is not acceptable.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  47. Kevin

    I can't believe how ridiculous it has gotten in this country that a parent can't even discipline their own child without some idiot screaming abuse. I'm sorry to tell all the granola crown that you can't always sit your child down in time out and sing kumbaya with them. Sometimes you need to a little physical touch to remind them who is the parent and who is the child. No wonder there are so many children that are way out of control now a days and have the "free spirit" mentality and are still living at home at the age of 30. Absolutely ridiculous.....

    I am not an advocate for child abuse by any means, however this whole PC thing has gotten so out of control that everybody is guilty until proven innocent. The flight attendant owes the mother an apology for causing a scene and extra stress to the mother for taking the baby away. There were no bruises or any sort of mark on the child's body to prove any abuse. MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS and maybe parents can be parents again. I would not want to bring a child in this world with everyone telling me how to raise my child.

    Kevin

    August 17, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  48. Arlene LaHera

    I don't think there is a proper age to slap a child and infants should never be punished. Corporal punishment should be outlawed everywhere, but if you allow a teacher to paddle a child, can you really forbid a parent from doing the same?

    August 17, 2010 at 9:04 am |
  49. leonel duffault

    The flight attendant's assistance was appropriate,but police storming the landing platform was worse than the parents action.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:04 am |
  50. Valerie

    I was on the flight. The passenger and baby were sitting one seat behind me on the right. The baby was screaming for about 15 to 20 minutes, ear piercing screams. These screams were so disturbing other passengers were commenting and turning around. The mother NEVER yelled at the child, she asked the child to stop crying and with each request the child continued to scream loudly.

    At one point it caused a chain reaction with other babies on the plane and I screamed about being in a baby Bermuda Triangle. Yes, I did notice the Flight Attendent approach the couple, offer to hold the child and the child immediately quieted down. The father then requested if he can get up to walk the child, but he had to wait until the seat belt light was off. Please be aware when the Flight Attendent gave the couple back the child, which was immediate, the child started crying again. Please note when the father was able to get up and walk the child the child went to sleep.

    Personally, I think someone over-reacted to the situation. Although I do admire the Flight Attendent for stepping in and being attentive.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:04 am |
  51. dino

    No child shouldn't be abuse for any reason. But as time past laws makes it difficult to discipline ur child. you can't spank ur kids, u can't raise ur voice. Without someone thinking ur abusing ur kid. then kids feels invincible no natural fear of parents. then they grow up commiting all kinds crimes. Then it falls back on the parents not discipline their kids.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:04 am |
  52. Toyya Braskey

    Spanking is not illegal. I think sometimes these screaming out of control children do need a small spat somewhere to grab their attn and snap them out of these fits. Since all these no physical discipline gurus have popped up, more and more young children and teen have ended up committing violent crimes, because there is no consequence for their actions these days. These no physical punishment experts say the no violence is suppose to create peaceful children and adults but it seems the opposite has happened. Now we have these spoiled children that kill parents because they don't get their way. It's terrible to be victimized by these out of control children disrupting entire public places. I don't care if it's babies or children some action has to stop them. I think a little tiny baby obviously should not be spanked and instead comforted, but for certain toddlers should. I was spanked and I'm okay. And like I said, I don't think a swift slap on the leg or hinny is child abuse.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:05 am |
  53. Gail Kirchner

    What was needed at the time was an intervention. The flight attendant did this and was 100% correct in her decision.

    Gail and Steve Kirchner
    Iowa City, Iowa

    August 17, 2010 at 9:05 am |
  54. ronvan

    Actually, for me, this is just another example of why our children are so screwed up! ANY kind of corporal punishment by a parent in todays world brings immediate condemnation, you are an unfit parent, you are a child abuser, mentally deficient, etc. etc.. There is a fine line between disciplining a child and abusing a child, but to make parents so afraid to administer discipline that they let the child do what they want is not the answer! YES, I am old school. Spare the rod, spoil the child!!

    August 17, 2010 at 9:06 am |
  55. Milton Maxfield

    I feel that the flight attendent made the right call, I am divorced and have a 8 yr. old daughter who has been slaped, grabbed by the face on many occasion by her mother, the NYC Court system as well as most city courts wont intervien because as the Police chief said on your interview that there were no marks visible however what about the mentel scars the child will have to bear, especially when the child did little if nothing to warrent such treatment. It is clear that there is a big flaw in our countrys legal system regarding childrens rights and care. Thank you for bringing this to light. Child Laws need to be changed !!

    August 17, 2010 at 9:06 am |
  56. Anita

    I can't begin to tell you how many times I have been on a plane with screaming/crying babies/kids. Parent won't do anything because they are afraid of what just happened to this parent. We need to get back to the good old days when a parent has the right to correct their child's behavior. I am not talking abuse but, there is nothing wrong with a little smack on butt, not pulling hair or punching. We grew up just fine. Again, don't confuse this with abuse which I am totally against. Everyone should know the difference. This is why today we have so many kids that have no respect for anyone or anything. Talking to small children, trying to make them understand something they are incapable of just is not working like the experts say. I like the idea of the flight attendant taking control because most of the time a child will listen to some else other than their parent. I am sure that the majority of the passengers on that flight were very annoyed by the situatiion but would not admitt it.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:07 am |
  57. Della Favale

    The flight attendant did more harm to the child by taking her away from her parents. I'm sure the parents just lightly slappped their child to quiet her. Maybe more children should get slapped and we wouldn't have such a XX generation growing up that have no respect Have the attendant go thru a mental exam.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:07 am |
  58. Paul Deal

    Absolutely, the flight attended acted appropriately. It is never appropriate to hit a child, yet alone a BABY. Never. Hopefully not only are the police involved, but also the incident reported to the child protective services agency in this woman's home state. At least this will teach her a lesson in parenting... hit a child, others will definitely take notice.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:08 am |
  59. Eric B.

    Although I believe a little spanking is helpful in disciplining a child you should never strike their face and this child is too young to understand why they were just struck. Flight attendant did good by stepping in to what appears to be frustrated parents, it happens to all of us at sometime. Parents should never feel embarrassed or pressured by people around them if they are doing all in their power to calm and quiet the child. Anyone not sympathetic to that needs to be slapped, hard.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:08 am |
  60. GiGi

    IMHO: The attendant's action in taking the baby may have been abrupt, tactless, embarrassing to the parents, but there is merit and gratitude to this attendant in her efforts to (a) assure a baby's safety and (b) give the parents some relief from a frustrating situation, as well as time to calm and gain control of themselves. Crying babies and undisciplined children are a bane to those who want quiet, comfortable flights, (something in our past), but more annoying are the parents who do not learn how to parent effectively, and who practice punishment as discipline. There are ways to meet babies' needs and entertain them, and enjoy the travel experience. ~family therapist

    August 17, 2010 at 9:09 am |
  61. Dale Lawton

    I was a little curious as to the time during the flight that this incident occured. If during take – off or approach and landing rapid changes in cabin presure affect young children more so than adults. Anyone who has ever traveled with a sinus condition / allergy can attest to the severe pain that can result during these time during a flight. When my kids were little and we were flying we allways had pacifiers and bottles so the kids would swallow to relieve the presure. The flight attendant did the correct thing by defusing a situation in the cabin that could have easially escallated if passengers try to handle it themselves.
    Dale / New York

    August 17, 2010 at 9:09 am |
  62. Erica

    The flight attendant had to make a split-second decision and did not have time to think it through. So in my opinion the attendant did the right thing. This baby was too young to be slapped or spanked. It was a simple intervention.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:10 am |
  63. PAT EAST HAVEN CT

    I think the mother was not wrong, it was a slap to get the babies attention, to stop disturbing other passengers in a small space. years ago my I had a baby who would scream if he did not get his way and hold his breath until he passed out and get a bloody nose. My baby doctor told me to unpin his diaper run my hand undercold water and give his a clap on the behind he said this will do two things get him to catch his breath and feel his rear end and he may think about not doing it anymore, I only had to do this once!! this is not child abuse society is not helping raise good children, just look at the newspapers today , children and adults have no respect for anyone.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:10 am |
  64. J.M. Kazmierczak

    I agree with Manish. There was no reason to call the authorities because a parent was diciplining their child. It all falls in with today's standards that you can't lay a finger on your child without someone calling it child abuse. For many years, parents used hitting their child as a form of dicipline to keep their children in line. In most cases, you don't need to hit a child, but certain situations do call for a spank to show the child who is in charge as you cannot always reason with a young child.
    I think that, in this situation, the flight attendant did the right thing as far as taking the child out of that situation to calm everyone down, but there was no reason to call police when you could just as easily look at the child's face and extremities for signs of abuse. As reported, the child had no visible signs of any abuse, which means that the flight attendant took a simple diciplining act and turned it into a huge ordeal when s/he could have just as easily checked the child themselves and returned him or her to the parents when everyone had calmed down. There is no reason to cry abuse every time a child is diciplined. Where do we draw the line? Will yelling at a child soon be considered abuse too?

    August 17, 2010 at 9:13 am |
  65. Karla Kellett

    Good Morning Kyra, I believe the flight attendant was in the right. It took alot of courage for her to stand up for the child by taking action. It is very inappropraite for anyone to slap a child, there is always a better way. Not all peoples are aware of the correct way to care for a child so when that happens, and you are in a public place, especially on an airplane, someone has to do something. As far as I'm concerned, the flight attendant did her duty professionally and as a fellow human being. She brought peace to a bad situation for everyone on the plane. By having the police involved gave the proper attention to a potentional child abuse situation. Thank you for your time, Karla Kellett, Des Moines, Iowa

    August 17, 2010 at 9:14 am |
  66. NOLA_B

    What a horrible experience! The mother should press charges against the flight attendant. Isn't that against the law, to take someone's child from them? She was not beating her child, or endangering her life, she just hit her. I've gotten worse than a slap in my day.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:14 am |
  67. Marvin

    You, know this goes to the basis of individual rights vs. government intervention. There is no way in heck someone without force would have taken my child away from me. This had nothing to do with safety on the plane. The Flight Attendent was way out of line. One small incident of a parent going overboard with discipline is not a reason to take a child. In order to take a child there needs to be obvious eminent danger or a pattern of bad parenting or abuse.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:17 am |
  68. Laura

    The child was not too young to be popped. They could have been in pain, but their actions will also show if they are in pain or if they are just being a pain. A mother for the most part knows those signs, not complete strangers or a flight attendant. You can not wait until a child is 5 yrs old before they start diciplining, they will be out of control. People need to mind their own darn business. Who gives someone the right to take a baby from their mother. Who the hell is a flight attendant....Like I said in my previous post, I wish she would have tried to take my baby. There would have been problems.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:22 am |
  69. LUCKY H.

    i am acepting your invitatioin to post a comment
    ,society has gone so far on the other side of children discipline that it is no longer done at all!
    i had the pleasure last year to fly all the way to europe with a screaming child two seats behind me,so maybe in that case the attendant should have removed the child fromm the parents...you think?
    I had children that traveled all over the world from 10 months and i never had to slap or gag!
    In this case both of the parents were not capable of turning the volume off on this child? the flight attendant maybe went a bit overboard,mybe the mother in her took over!

    August 17, 2010 at 9:27 am |
  70. Mrs. West

    I hope This family finds a really good lawyer and takes Southwest and the self rightous flight attendent for a ride.
    The situation could have been handled with a lot more diplomacy and care for the baby and the mother, "She thought the mother took things to far". I cringe at this abuse of power by a glorified waitress and the police standing by her. They look foolish.
    If so many people witnessed this "slap" why are the accounts off it different???

    August 17, 2010 at 9:27 am |
  71. Rose McDougall

    She absolutely DID the RIGHT thing! If this mom would slap her little baby in such a public arena, what will she be capable of doing behind closed doors?

    August 17, 2010 at 9:28 am |
  72. Manisha

    Seems as if Flight attendant is not mother yet! Time will teach her too.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:28 am |
  73. Michael Armstrong Sr.

    Ive read some of these comments and there seems to be some people out there that did not hear the age of the child 13 months old this child is barely learning how to walk a child this age has no ideal whats going on the parent was more then likely frustrated and was not aware of how to deal with the situation around a bunch of irritated passengers the flight attendant could have used better judgment in helping before the fuse got to short .

    August 17, 2010 at 9:28 am |
  74. Eric Benn

    I'm an over 2 million mile member on American Airlines and I wish flight attendants would confiscate all the screaming children or those who whiplash passengers in front of them. I've witnessed many a times entire plane sections wanting to slap that child who's parents were doing nothing to control it. The solution, in my opinion, is that parents traveling with children should be at the very back of the plane with a buffer row left empty to prevent other passengers from having their head covered in baby food.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:31 am |
  75. Linda Antoniewicz

    This child (referred to as screaming child in the report) seemed to be on the way to a "melt down." The mother had no way to remove the child to a quiet environment, a crib area, or a place where she could soothe without the drone of jet engines, strangers all around, loud conversations, and public address systems. At this age sobbing, screaming children often go to voluntary and involuntary actions–gasping for breath, blotchy redness, screaming, and even biting to express frustration. While this may not have seemed to be an optimal intervention (we do not know what went on before the "slap", which according the police could not be determined to be on the leg of face) and what the mother tried to do to calm her child, sometimes a single light tap or what was characterized "slap" provides a shock value to hep focus the child and allow her to settle herself. As a mother of three grown children, I can remember removing a child from a supermarket cart full of needed groceries, and leaving the store because I couldn't stop a meltdown. She did not have the option to remove her child from the plane. I can remember 13-18 month old offpsring biting (rarely) a sibling or play date child, resulting in a quick tap. The behavior never imprinted to became habitual. Give this mother a break. I agree with the woman who looked to be a grandmother, who suggested the flight attendant should have offered assistance, "May I help you, can I get you anything, can I walk the baby up the aisle for you?" Thank goodness for the common sense the police officers showed at the end of the flight.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:32 am |
  76. Woody

    No adult has the right to abuse a child, period !

    It's, just the same as a bully picking on a weaker person, shameful !

    To this day I don't speak to my two sisters-in-law or my brothers (their husbands) because, they were physically abusive to their children in front of me. I let the rest of the family know it and they were shamed to, at least, mind their p's & q's with their children around relatives. They have never apologized to me and, most of their children have distanced themselves from them, now. Makes me sad and, I wonder what went on behind closed doors 😦

    August 17, 2010 at 9:43 am |
  77. oli

    the flight attendant did the right thing.

    imagine if no one did anything and the child was injured.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:49 am |
  78. Laurent

    Another case of nanny government getting involved in parents' rights. Once this stops becoming news, we will become indifferent and government will unilaterally take our children like they did in the USSR.

    I can tell you one thing. Many more people than my baby would have gotten slapped if a flight attendant tried to get my baby away from me. I would have pressed kidnapping charges on him or her.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:49 am |
  79. Randy

    I'd rather be put in jail for spanking my child than have him put in jail because I didn't.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  80. Kent- St.Louis, MO.

    For The people who think the airline attendants and authorities were right in thier decision, why wasn't the baby taking to the hospital for saftey precaution. after all, we don't know what's wrong with the baby, baby too young to talk. We as americans want to do the right thing by helping. Maybe this was their first flight. Did anyone offer to assist the mother and advising her of using their own mother wit. Let's see what happens now. Stay tune for the follow-up with the experts on CNN.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  81. Lisa

    Kyra your story wasn't clear. Did she slap the child on the face?

    August 17, 2010 at 9:53 am |
  82. Ray

    Although there are too many details that we don't know about in this case, obviously the father was not with his wife and child. If this was my child, there's no way in the world I would let someone else take my baby away from its mother. And, even today's definition of "slapping" is totally different from "hitting". Hitting a child can be injurious, but slapping does nothing but temporarily stings and only to get the child's attention. It is a harmless but effective discipline tactic that is obviously absent in most of the previous writers' comments. I often wonder if those people are the source of undisciplined children that grow up to populate our country's prisons.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:53 am |
  83. Jon

    Your news coverage is one sided. Where was the baby slapped? How hard was the baby slapped? A slap on the diaper is a lot different than a slap on the face.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:54 am |
  84. Jo

    If a child is old enough to have a fat bottom, I think it is ok to
    apply the board of education upon the seat of learning.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:55 am |
  85. marina

    Flight attendant went too FAR!
    Slap is nothing!
    It’s none of his/her(fl/attendant) business!
    It’s only mom’s business!
    Flight attendant must be punished!

    August 17, 2010 at 9:56 am |
  86. Chris

    Parents have the right to discipline their children. This is why this country has the problems that it has. The process that should have taken place is, the flight attendant should have notified the "On Land" Police department (like they did after she took the child,) and they should have handled it on the ground, so that other peoples lives were not in jeopardy. Just like terrorist don't belong on planes, and neither do "Pissed off Moms"

    I am thankful for every whooping I got as baby, toddler, child, forso when I became a teen, it was no longer needed, after such good parenting. People need to understand that each family has their own lives, and each needs to tend to their own. They found no evidence of child abuse, and I think accusing a mother of child abuse when she has not, is just as bad as what they did to Mr. Greene, keeping him locked up for 27 YEARS! If no one will pop their children now.... who do you think will "pop pop pop" (shoot) them later?

    August 17, 2010 at 9:56 am |
  87. Henry

    We have become a nation of whiners and finger pointers. There is a difference between discipline and abuse. I bet Bill Gates, the Pope and Oprah all had their hides tanned when they had misbehaved as children.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:58 am |
  88. mike

    If you slap a 13 month old baby, you should be slapped right back to feel the same pain. Then should be jailed and punished.

    August 17, 2010 at 9:59 am |
  89. TJ

    1st of all – The flight attendant shouldn't of done taken the child.
    2nd- The flight attendant could of helped with the situation and try to help the mother instead of taking the child.
    3rd- I can't believe this made the news.
    I've had to deal with DHS on bogus charges. Once they get in your life they don't leave and cause even more issues. In today's world a bruise means abuse, what happened to the old days, I'm only 27, when a spanking meant you messed up and deserved it. Kids need to be disciplined not put in time out.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:01 am |
  90. Mike T

    What really happened did or di she not slap the child? Now if she did no stranger shall rip my child out of my arms without me slapping the crap out of the flight attendant. If the child is being abused you are still in a controlled environment; let the plane land and the autorities handle it. If the child was not slapped in the face, then I would still slap the attendant for snatching my child. my parenting rights and style is not the airline or the government business. Get Real

    August 17, 2010 at 10:02 am |
  91. Chuck Matheson

    We are all making comments on something that we don't have all the complete facts on. Some say she slapped the child on the leg, others say it was on the face so we don't really know and shouldn't judge because the face and the leg make a big difference in this case. However, spanking your child or slapping on the leg or butt is not child abuse in the slightest. In my opinion that is why our youth today are so unrespectful of others and adults...because we have stopped punishing them with spankings and such. I was spanked when I was a child and I don't feel that I was ever abused. I spanked my children a few times when they were growning up and they are very succesful adults and family members and none of them feel that they were ever abused either. YOu only have to do it a few times and they get the message that Mom and Dad aren't messing around. We have gone to far to the other extreme in my opinon.

    Chuck Matheson
    Vacaville, CA

    August 17, 2010 at 10:03 am |
  92. Jack

    I am 67 years old, sure I displined my children and they are better today for it. The flight attendant went a little to far, sure she should have checked on the child and reported it to her supervisor, but take the child...I think not. My problem is, had this been a dog she slapped, she would be in jail.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:04 am |
  93. Jay

    Flight attendant went too way too far!! She does not have ANY authority to take away the kid from the mother, unless it compromised the safety of the flight!!

    Slapping a kid is NOT ABUSE!! It's called discipline!! There are times when (some) kids need that "final" physical attention to realize that what they are doing is not safe or right or appropriate and they need to stop!!

    If that person repeatedly kept slapping the kids then I can understand that it would be considered as abuse otherwise, .come on people, mind your own business and your own kids!! There are too many kids out their getting in trouble because they have not been disciplined properly!

    Btw, people that don't have kids WILL NOT have a clue what is it like to have a kid (or kids) in these situations...it's like saying I understand what it is like living without an arm when I have two arms!! So please keep your emotional outpours o your self!

    August 17, 2010 at 10:08 am |
  94. Nikole Krause Black

    Did it work?? That was my first question as the parent of two young children. I've seen ( as have most parents of little ones) little ones in hysterics–situations where one would feel it appropriate to slap an ADULT.

    As a breast-feeding advocate (World Health Organization says "One year good, two years better!) I noted that if the mother were still breastfeeding that 13 month-old she could have easily stopped the escalation with that loving gesture and easy solution.

    As for the attendant's actions: well, they're attendants, not babysitters. I'm glad for the parents that this didn't turn into a CPS incident–it's also been proven that children are more likely to be abused if taken from their willing biological parents.

    To all the passengers and former passengers who've exprienced a similar situation–it's the minding your own business that loses you the right to complain about it afterwards.

    To ronvan: I actually believe that that quote would be better read more like a commandment: Yes, "SPARE the rod, SPOIL the child." It's even been scientifically proven that it's impossible to hug or coddle a child younger than 6 months too much.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:21 am |
  95. Wilson Picket

    Absolutely agree that "child abuse" should not occur at all. But, we humans tend to be overly critical at times and what simply is a way of catching a child's attention to change a behavior can be construed as abuse when it is not. And we have to be very careful how or when we intervene. There are much bigger problems in this world with other types of child abuse that can't be judged by observing, but we the human race literally allows all to happen.
    Slapping a child within reason is sometimes necessary to change behavior or control reactions. I unfortunately slapped one of my boys when he was about 7 years old as I was asking him to stop doing something he was not supposed to be doing. He raised his hands at me as threatening to strike. It was a controlled slap and it didn't leave a mark or bruise. But, it surely sent a message that you should never disrespect a loving parent or a caring authority. He quickly learned a very important lesson and never repeated his reaction of disrespect. He has grown up to be a loving son, parent and husband and has a succesful career as an U.S. Soldier. He learned to value respect and the rewards it brings to your life.
    The other part of this incident (chlid screaming) is people need to be more thoughtful and judge if their child is ready to travel well. There are different ways we can learn about this and prepare for it. There are other people around that don't want to hear a child crying for the duration of their paid for trip. Very difficult subject for those involved and around it.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:37 am |
  96. James H. White

    Islam had nothing to do with the 9/11 incident, equating Islam with those terrorest attacks is paramount to condeming christianity because tim Mcvey said he was a christian. Those terrorist were not
    muslim, Islam specially condems such acts.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:40 am |
  97. Chad

    i feel that the flight attendant did the right thing in taking the baby from the mother, the baby was probably in a lot of pain. Also with the police being called than the parents should of been arrested for slapping the baby, i call it child abuse and the parents should have to serve parrent counsling after being arrested, than after the counsling is completed than the child be returned to the parents; babies – infants cry for a reason not just because they want too.

    August 17, 2010 at 10:59 am |
  98. Helen Rockwell

    As a mother who travelled by air with small children many times, I am surprised that noone helped the baby! Early on, a flight attendant told me that changes in cabin pressure could cause pain to children's ears. Giving the child something to encourage swallowing usually prevented or cured the pain.

    August 17, 2010 at 11:21 am |
  99. Barabara

    The attendant did the right thing because............there is nothing more unnerving than a crying baby in a crowded airplane. The parents overreacted yes. Did the attendant ask to take the baby to see if she could calm the crying? I'm sure if you ask the parents they would agree and be glad someone was looking out after the child as well as the other passengers.

    August 17, 2010 at 11:34 am |
  100. Woody

    This incident is more proof that humans are, nothing more than arrogant, violent, self-glorifying animals and, not worth saving ! 😉

    August 17, 2010 at 11:38 am |
  101. naomi

    It was a good thing she took the baby. The mother could have hit the child next.

    Whatever the mother was going through, she was handling it poorly and a crying baby on top of it... I guess she just snapped.
    But that is no excuse for slapping a baby.

    I think the mother needs a break. Caring for a baby is demanding and she is obviously not in the frame of mind for the job.

    She should be made to have a relative stay over at her place and help with the baby before she does something she'd regret.
    And she should get therapy or something.

    People are under major pressures these days but we just have to keep going. There's no alternative.

    August 17, 2010 at 11:39 am |
  102. jamie arnett

    wow..i would've liked to see someone try and take my baby out of my arms..they would regret it dearly.

    August 17, 2010 at 12:17 pm |
  103. CZB

    The flight attendant made the right decision to diffuse the situation. As for the mother slapping her child...don't judge. Cabin pressure and being restained on someones lap for an indefinite period of time is not the best for a squirmy child or stressed parents.

    August 17, 2010 at 12:19 pm |
  104. ken

    Slapping a child is assault under the law The mother is lucky the police did not arrest her. Why not smack everyone who talks on the cell phone in public or smack anyone who carriers a protest sign you don't agree with.

    August 17, 2010 at 1:02 pm |
  105. Mike T

    I believe that there are those that would like to label this as child abuse so that they can enact more laws to restrict parents rights to discipline their children. When a child or youth grows older and has no reference between right and wrong and commits all types of crime then is the parents fault but, a community problem.

    August 17, 2010 at 1:12 pm |
  106. Elvia M. Chalmers

    Well, we weren't there and we don't know the whole story. Every mother knows there are times when attention getting tactics are needed. Every mother knows there are times they are glad for intervention from "anyone" because they are at their wits end.

    How do you expect us to know who did what? That's the issue with the media, we blow things out of proportion. The authorities handled it, they made their professional judgement based on "eyewitness" accounts and the rest is not our business.

    August 17, 2010 at 2:10 pm |
  107. Jay

    Since when can a flight attendant take a child away from his/her parent? What kind of BS is that.

    August 17, 2010 at 2:16 pm |
  108. Lynn

    I hope you all know that this is a 13 month old we are talking about. People who thinks slapping a baby helps it calm down got to be the dumbest people on earth.

    August 17, 2010 at 2:20 pm |
  109. Lynn

    CNN also needs to post that the father sat with the flight attendent with the baby till the end of the flight. So she didn't kidnap the baby.

    August 17, 2010 at 2:24 pm |
  110. Michelle Collins

    While I hate to see someone slap a child, it is not another persons place unless they are law enforcement to take a child from it's parent. Wait until you land and notify the police but you have no right to take someone's child. If we allow this, ANYONE can tell you what to do and can take your children from you. This sounds like liberal social justice and it's wrong.

    August 17, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
  111. rhonda

    There's a big difference between a slap and a beating. It all depends on how it was done. Some are raised to never raise a hand to a child and others do believe in it as punishment. I for one, if I did something wrong, was spanked and hey, I'm fine. I believe that withholding spankings, done correctly and when needed, is a lot of what is wrong with the world today. There's a lot of spoiled brats out there that have no respect for anyone. I think people need to mind their own business, unless there is abuse and I think this is far from abuse...come on people, geez!

    August 17, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
  112. critter

    jay- laws and times have change get over it already. you don't go slap a one year old. a one year old does not know better. ok a one year old does not know better. what if the police found abuse you be crying they should of taken the kid away. yes you would be. they did the right thing to protect the child and the people on airplane. i can't believe how many of you think is ok for displine sure if you know how to do it right and stop using spanking as the only stupid option

    August 17, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  113. Annie

    You guys are probably the same people who would turn around and stare at the parents if the baby was screaming at the top of his/her lungs and the parents did nothing to disclipline their child. I bet their neighbors complained to them to do something about it and therefore the parents were forced to do something about it. Sometimes kids are being cranky because they're just being bratty and a 13 month old child isn't really a "baby". It can run around, break things, cry for no reason and be a brat. Is there a medical reason why you can't spank a child or slap them? yea you're not supposed to hit the child hard but I grew up oversees and we got slapped and trust me .. nothing bad ever happened. We just got shaken back into our senses. It's not like she stuck her new born into a microwave. I can bet money that the mother was a minority – otherwise, this thing would not be blown out of propotion like this. Get over it.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  114. critter

    Manish Agarwal- reporting to the police was teh right step... what happen if teh child was abused huh? i wonder.... you be singing a diffrent tune saying they should of call the cops.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  115. Hannah

    I had a flight in June where a set of parents were basically trying to smother their crying INFANT with blankets and a tee shirt because he wouldn't stop crying. I think that what the flight attendant did by taking the child away should have been a means of letting the mother regroup, not because it's child abuse.

    When you're on a full flight and your baby starts crying, it's not only nerve wracking for the parent, but for everyone on the plane. Hitting a baby to stop the crying doesn't work, but I can definitely understand where her mind might have been when she did it.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:20 pm |
  116. rhonda

    I think the Flight Attendant should have charges brought against her. I guarantee she would if she had snatched my baby from me.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:21 pm |
  117. critter

    you guys don't get it... do you... you don't need to lay a finger on a child for him or her to learn. how do we know where the mother slap? we don't so don't go assuming anything.

    yet if the child was abused... you all be yelling at the flight atteneds and other people on airplane to do something. many of you need to also speak up about animal abuse. enough is enough.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:22 pm |
  118. Mrs. Eileen G. Curras

    I am surprise the attendand did something. On a filight to Puerto Rico another passanger wanted for me to teach my child of 1 year old. I was traveling wih my husband and adult son. I just gave them a look watch out for this lady.

    August 17, 2010 at 3:32 pm |
  119. sidra

    i have a 13month old and she can be quite loud just to get her way and if what she wants is harmful i have to stop her no matter what though it has never come to hitting. I am assuming thats what was happening on the flight and that mom tried slapping when most probably other ways werent wroking! this fuss is just ridiculous- why dont you ask the mother what was going on – infact even that is nobodys business. the flight attendant probably helped out eventually but why the police?? motive seems fishy -seems it was just to get publicity!

    August 17, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
  120. Angela

    Obviously, the mom was way too stressed out to deal with the baby, so yes, the attendant did the right thing to get the baby out of the situation. All the self-righteous passengers who witnessed it were probably the same ones giving the wh...ole family stink eye not two minutes before the incident because the baby was crying in the first place. The mom doesn't get excused, for her reaction, but I'm quite sure the other passengers were all grumbling and making it obvious that their flight was being ruined by the crying baby, which didn't make an already stressed out parent LESS stressed.

    August 17, 2010 at 4:28 pm |
  121. Candace

    I am curious as to the airlines policy on this matter. As a school employee, we are trained to protect children and to look for signs of abuse.
    If I am not mistaken, the flight Captain is in charge on a plane, did the flight attendant have his/her permission to take the child?
    Also, there have been times in my life where, in public, I have seen a parent wait in line or waiting room and such that children get impatient, I, myself have dug through my purse to find paper and pencil to play tic-tac-toe just to give the child something else to do and give mom a break, could this have been a motive?
    I am not in any position -and neither are you- to determine what is considered abuse, is spanking abuse, check state laws, they are not all the same, you may have your opinion, but you cannot judge if you were not there to see it. Is there video footage?

    August 17, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  122. MM

    It is one thing to discipline a child for a very bad behavior. But it is a totally different story to slap a helpless infant that can do nothing to avoid the slapping.
    This baby was crying for being in pain for some reason such as earaches when planes take off or land due to change in air pressure, not for being a brat.
    For those of you that think a baby crying in pain is a brat, please, don't reproduce.

    August 17, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  123. sarah

    The flight attendent was out of line! Some people are uneducated and react in different situations meaning they might think that hitting might help. I'm not sticking up for the ignorant mother but the flight attendent had no right to take away a child. She is lucky the mother didn't attack her for taking the baby. People seriously need to really know there boundaries! I'm talking on both sides the mother for over reacting and the flight attendent for over reacting..

    August 17, 2010 at 9:37 pm |
  124. Penny Munson

    If the flight attendant thought that she was witnessing child abuse she had a responsibility to remove the child and report the incident to the police. I agree that parents should discipline their children, but abuse is not discipline.

    August 18, 2010 at 12:30 am |
  125. MyTwoCents

    To all of the people who believe that the parents in this case should be held at fault: wake up! Have you ever heard of discipline? Discipline is an important element of parenting. Without it, children do not recognize boundaries, and in time, they have all the power while their parents have completely lost their authority. This simple act of discipline DOES NOT constitute abuse in any shape, fashion or form. And since when was an individual's parenting style everyone else's business? Children have too many rights these days ... when I was a child, I had absolutely no rights until (according to my parents) I was 18 years old and a productive member of society, and my mother used corporal punishment quite liberally. Then, the PARENTS had the rights, including the right to discipline their children in any matter they deemed appropriate ... let's restore those rights and maybe we'll produce more civilized, and eventually happier, children – instead of heathens who grow up to be disrespectful, rude adults with a faulty sense of entitlement.

    August 18, 2010 at 8:11 am |
  126. John Tyler Erie, Pa

    I think the flight attendant did the right thing. It is better to error on the safe side than ignore a potential abusive parent.
    If this child had suffered severe trauma or died because nobody stood up there would be a criminal investigation against the airline for lack of intervention.
    How many times have we seen on the news where a child was beaten up severely or even killed. Then afterward people step forward later when it's too late regretting that they took no action to protect the child. There is a lot of stress now put on parents due to marital or financial problems and some people take it out on their children.

    August 18, 2010 at 8:22 am |
  127. MyTwoCents

    And another thing ... if you are arguing that a thirteen month old child is too young to understand the corporal punishment, what do you suggest as the alternative? Will you try to reason with him? Count to three? PUH-LEASE!

    August 18, 2010 at 8:26 am |
  128. Michael

    Yes, I think the attendant did the right thing.
    Any parent slapping a "BABY" needs a parenting class to observe how to raise a child. We all are becoming aware finally that abuse to children hurts all of society.

    August 18, 2010 at 8:51 am |
  129. Valerie

    YOU DON'T SLAP BABIES, PERIOD!! You don't slap children period! When they get to be obnoxious, mouthy, know-it-all teenagers it can be very tempting to whack them sometimes, but it's still wrong! But at least a teenager is someone your own size, and not a tiny, helpless little person.

    @manish. You said, "...a parent will not hit a child unless he is forced too...(sic)" the kids don't FORCE their parents to hit them across the face! It's a decision the parent make, and it's sick. Further, I'll bet it didn't work. I'll bet it just made the kid scream ten times harder. Doy. It always does.

    August 18, 2010 at 9:14 am |
  130. Renee'

    Yes I know she did the right thing. I am so tired of reading and hearing about parents who beat and kill their children. About two months ago a father called himself showing his 2 yrs. old how to be a boxer. But the father end up boxing the child to death. He hit the child for 15 minutes and the child fell off the bed and crack his head. The father left him on the floor for an hour before calling help. I was totally sicken by this. We need to protect the child in this world. If the parent aren't going to love them and treat them right, then they need to be taken away and given to people who truly and honestly love and want kids. There are so many singles and couples who want children and can't have them and they would truly love them. You should never beat a child, say bad words to them, slap them etc....... There are many other ways to discipline them. They just want you to love them, play with them and take care of them. Which everyone should be doing. I don't have any kids, but I have a lot of love in my heart and I would be an awesome mother. Instead I babysitter and help my friends raise their children. I done baby holding at TCH and just totally love it. It was the greatest feeling in the world. Kids are so much joy and they should be treated with respect at all time. My heart goes out this child who parent slap him/her. I pray to God that they aren't beating him/her at home and we don't find out until it is too late for the child. My heart is crying for all the children who are being abusive in this world.

    August 18, 2010 at 10:47 am |
  131. Jodi

    This is absolutely ridiculous. I understand that not everyone agrees with spanking or slapping a child and that's fine for you to enforce those things and implement them on your own kids. You even have a right to share those ideas with people and maybe in the process convince others to do the same. But you may not TAKE a child from a mother who is disciplining her kid. It is not your place unless you are affiliated with the law in some way and have a legitimate right to do so.

    August 18, 2010 at 12:21 pm |
  132. Emily Rivers

    The first story said the child was running up and down the aisle. Was that true? If I had a child out of control, I might give her a little quick swat on the bottom, but I hope I wouldn't slap her on the face. The poor mother was probably at her wits end. I'm glad the police officers used good judgment. I do think the the flight attendant would have better served the situation if she had just said, "Oh! I know you must be tired, why don't I take care of the child for a little while." I would be terrified if someone took my little child away from me.

    August 18, 2010 at 12:23 pm |
  133. linore

    to Manish Agarwal, You think slapping a BABY IS OK ?
    Your statement is insane ! No child has a reason to be slapped , are you kidding? Slapping a baby? there is a reason . You are as stupid as your words. also , you know that these parents aren't criminals , oh you are psychic too , people like you had to be hit in the head a few times ... you prove my point .
    Hitting makes you feel bad about yourself ! period. Hope they have money for this child/ baby's physiotherapy in a few years , cause this baby will have issues of self esteem .

    August 18, 2010 at 12:26 pm |
  134. Cheryl

    I think the flight attendant was absolutely correct. And i think it was right to call the police. A person who will slap a child in public is clearly telling us they have no qualms about doing much worse behind closed doors- and who will be there then to intervene for the child? I think it is a sad commentary on our society that in 2010, this issue is still even under debate! If someone slapped me, I'd charge them with assault- because that is exactly what it is. So what makes it right to assault a small defenseless person? Hitting children is not discipline. It is abuse. The only thing it teaches them is that you are bigger than they are and that the most trusted person in their world -YOU- thinks it's okay to hurt them. Nice lesson to teach a child.

    August 18, 2010 at 12:35 pm |
  135. Lamba Noorzoy

    I strongly believe that the stewardess had no right to take the baby away from the mother. Who does she think she is? If it was any other type of physical abuse where the child was in danger then she could have done that. If she was really that concerned, she should have approached the mother and talked to her, but nothing gives her the right to take someones child away from them. I was raised in a very traditional family and my mom has spanked us when we did someting bad as children and I am proud to say being 30 now, that we turned into well disciplined and well educated children.

    August 18, 2010 at 2:44 pm |
  136. Randi

    The flight attendant was ABSOLUTELY right in taking this child away! This mother slapped her child across the face and yelled at her to "shut up." The baby had a black eye from "a dog bite," that her uncle, and not the hospital, treated. I am wondering why the authorities saw nothing wrong with this situation and gave the child back to her possibly unfit parents?
    Coming at the same time as a woman in SC suffocates and drowns her two toddlers (close in age to this child!), why is more scrutiny not put on such possible child abuse? These people need to be monitored by Child Protective services!

    August 18, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
  137. Wasp

    First, you have to ask what REALLY happened. Did the flight attendant offer to take the child to assist the mom? It was, evidently, a stressed situation. Don't you think that if the flight attendant took the baby and ran off with it somewhere on the aircraft, that someone might have said SOMETHING? Do you think that 130 passengers stood by and just watched as the mom let her child be taken from her? What were the other crew members doing?
    It is completely possible the flight attendant took the child to assist the stressed out mother. Where the flight attendant over stepped her boundaries, I believe, is when she called the authorities. She should not have notified the federal police unless the situation became hostile, which it doesn't sound like it did.

    August 18, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  138. TonyInLargo

    Someone correct me if I state in error that the Captain on the plane is the the person in charge of everything on a flight once it is airborne. He is the Law. Ergo, a flight attendant under his "command", while in-flight, could exercise the right to take a baby away from an abusive mother, if the Captain agrees with the action.

    I believe the Flight Attendant acted properly in this case if it was played out as it was reported by the media.

    August 18, 2010 at 9:11 pm |
  139. Lauren

    This flight attendant is my mother and my hero. I have no doubt that she approached the situation with class and kindness. She would have never handled the situation without thinking it through, and puting the child first. She simply wanted to help, and she did. I love you mom.

    August 18, 2010 at 9:17 pm |
  140. Valerie

    @Lauren...it sounds like you could give us the full story and help us get rid of all of the incorrect assumptions. My assumptions are that the woman slapped her baby across the face, and your mom offered to help, to hold the baby to give Mom a "break." Others seem to think your mom just SNATCHED the baby away, which is crazy. They're on a plane! What parent would stand for having their child forcibly removed from them?

    August 19, 2010 at 12:58 pm |
  141. Taylor

    Yes,the Flight attendant did the right thing .

    August 19, 2010 at 1:59 pm |
  142. Jason

    Sounds like alot of you adults need to be smacked across the face for even thinking about intervening in a strangers parenting. If anyone ever took my kid away while I was spanking them, correcting, or even lecturing them, they would be carting me off to jail, and them off to a hospital!

    You think you have a right to medal in my family biz, you have a big wake up coming. None of you have any right to tell anyone else how to raise their children, and the second any of you try to tell me how to, i will smash your face!

    August 19, 2010 at 2:51 pm |
  143. Valerie

    @Jason: So, in your opinion slapping a one year old across the face is an acceptable form of discipline? Really? And again, I reiterate, the baby was not "taken away" as the title of the article suggests. The stewardess offered to help the mom by holding the baby for her. Mom said, "OK," and Dad sat with the stewardess and the baby in the back.

    I can't help but wonder what the reaction would have been if the husband and wife had gotten into an altercation on the plane and he had slapped the crap out of his wife and yelled at her to shut up. Why do SOME think that's a fine thing to do to a little baby, but would have fits if it's done to another adult?

    August 23, 2010 at 8:07 am |
  144. Summer

    I'm not there so cannot really judge, but if its justified, then the attendant was in the wrong.

    August 23, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  145. Deborah in Blue Springs, MO

    I want to shake the hand of that flight attendant!
    Parents seem to think it's "good parenting" to physically assault their children. Somehow, I suppose they rationalize it as "teaching them lessons". This is true. This teaches children if they want someone to obey, you must hit that person until they acquiesce to your demands.

    Well, most rational and compassionate people recognize that good parenting means teaching your children to use logic and kindness to gain respect, not violence and degradation. That being said, what is wrong with that woman who believes she was "teaching" her BABY by hitting it like a dog?!

    August 23, 2010 at 9:22 am |
  146. Deborah in Blue Springs, MO

    For the record, I am a single mother of a teenage daughter. With the exception of a LIGHT swat on a DIAPERED bottom years ago, I have never physically assaulted (spanked) my child.
    She is respectful, obedient, responsible, kind, compassionate, an honor roll student, motivated, and – most importantly – she knows I respect her as a human being and she respects me as well.
    She is logical and pragmatic, especially when it comes to counselling her friends who STILL endure corporal punishment at the hands of their parents. Her friends either fear or resent their parents for hitting them to "gain respect".

    And people wonder why so many young females endure domestic violence at the hands of their husbands/boyfriends. Because their parents taught them it's okay to use physical assault and degradation to control someone... someone demanding respect and obedience.

    August 23, 2010 at 9:38 am |
  147. Ronald E. Childs

    The flight attendant was completely in the wrong. Obviously, this was not an African American baby, because the flight attendant would have gotten his or her head knocked off for even thinking of taking a black child away from its mother or father for any duration of time. The absolute gall. Stick to passing out peanuts and stay out of parents' discipline regimens. As much as I fly on business and am subjected to screaming babies that parents do next to nothing about, I'd be elated to see just one such attempt at discipline.

    August 23, 2010 at 11:09 am |
  148. Lece, NY

    Bible says " spare the rod spoil the child" I do not currently have any children but soon to be a mom in feb and depending on what the child was doing depends on the proper punishment!!! I watch so many tru tv events where spoiled & misbehaved children have no discipline and grow up to become a menace to society! They either kill their parents or expect to get what ever they want in life from everybody. I come from a one parent home wishing to have been raised with both parents and ended up rebelling in ways that landed me in prison. It is up to the parents or parent to teach the child responsibility and some type of independence but it is also up to the child as it grows up to either learn from mistakes or become a statistic. As a child grows up they can be affected by many things as I was but it is up to them to be an overcomer not stay in the victim stance. They sooner or later have to grow up and become a man or a woman and stand on their own 2 feet. mom & dad will not always be there to hold their hand. I feel that children have to be taught how to behave from the beginning not abusively neither but in away where they can understand and other people should mind their business unless the child is being deathly mistreated where the proper authorities need to be advised.

    August 23, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  149. Valerie

    THERE IS NO INDICATION WHATSOEVER THAT THE BABY WAS FORCEFULLY TAKEN FROM THE PARENT!!!! Every indication is that the Mom was losing it, the stewardess offered to help and the Mom said OK, and was probably grateful.

    Also, Ronald E Childs: You said, "Obviously, this was not an African American baby, because the flight attendant would have gotten his or her head knocked off..." And that means what? All African Americans handle every situation with violence? I do believe that's stereotyping.

    August 24, 2010 at 8:38 am |
  150. Mark

    I believe the flight attendant did the wrong thing because she does not know if the child has a medical condition when she took the baby. The baby could have allergies and other conditions. Therefore if the baby was injury or became sick the flight attendant and the airport will be held liable. Plus if i was the parent i would charge the flight attendant with kidnapping and sue the airport. Some people just need to know that sometimes a kid needs to be spanked.

    August 24, 2010 at 10:26 am |
  151. Valerie

    @Mark. The father sat with the stewardess and the baby. Besides, if the baby actually developed some sort of complications it's not like they couldn't find the mother! They were in an air plane!

    August 25, 2010 at 8:18 am |