Update, clarification: My initial reaction to yesterday’s United Airlines bloody-beat-down episode (which happened in Chicago on Sunday evening, or the night before last) was not that David Dao, the bespectacled Vietnamese doctor, wasn’t entitled to keep his seat, but that he became a screaming two-year-old once the security guys tried to throw him off. And that his bizarrely repeated chant of “I have to go home, I have to go home, I have to go home” indicated some kind of obsessive, primitive mentality.
The United guys obviously caused the trouble and are taking the hit, but at the same time I can’t throw in with people who howl like bobcats. The entire twitterverse has condemned United — 100% agreement. But nobody will acknowledge, much less react to, Dao’s primal screaming.
(a) “He went to medical school in Vietnam in the 1970s before moving to the U.S., where he started working as a pulmonologist in Elizabethtown, Kentucky”; (b) “He was arrested in 2003 and eventually convicted of drug-related charges”; (c) “He was also convicted of several felony charges of obtaining drugs by fraud or deceit in November 2004 and was placed on five years of supervised probation in January 2005, surrendering his medical license the next month. He was, however, permitted to resume practicing in 2015 under certain conditions”; (d) “According to TMZ, Dao can only practice internal medicine in an outpatient facility once a week”; (e) “In 2005, the Associated Press reported that Dao faced 98 charges of illegally prescribing and trafficking prescription painkillers. Prosecutors alleged that Dao and a co-defendant, Brian D. Case, fraudulently filled prescriptions at various pharmacies for narcotic drugs like hydrocodone, Oxycontin and Percocet. He faced 20 years in prison; (f) At the same time, Dao was appealing a conviction in Louisville on charges of writing prescriptions and checks to a patient in exchange for sex. Dao was acquitted of seven other counts of obtaining drugs through fraud and a trafficking charge; (f) “TMZ also reported that Dao made $117,000 in 2009 at a poker tournament.”