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Travelers take aim at kids on a plane

By Marnie Hunter, CNN
updated 10:45 AM EST, Tue February 5, 2013
AirAsia X is offering a child-free
AirAsia X is offering a child-free "Quiet Zone" on some flights.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • An airline's kid-free zones spark debate among travelers
  • Many says parents are not properly disciplining their kids
  • Some parents say there's only so much they can do to control an unruly child

(CNN) -- Kids on a plane: Nothing incites readers like talk of other people's precious angels wreaking havoc in a sealed metal tube.

AirAsia X's launch this week of kid-free zones on select flights brought our commenters out in force with strong ideas about modern parenting, or a lack thereof.

A commenter with the name DigDug2010 loves the idea of child-free flights: "I will happily pay $50-$100 more each way if I was assured I would not be seated within five rows ahead or behind of some little hyper brat who isn't controlled by his useless parents. In fact, airlines should all offer flights that are totally 'child free.'

"If pets can survive in the cargo hold, so can ill-behaved kids," DigDug2010 wrote.

Commenters who identify themselves as parents are a little less zealous in their approval of the airline's move.

Airline offers kid-free section

"I have a kid, and I say go for it, too. Hell, I might use it myself when not traveling with the rugrat. What I don't like is parenting advice from people who probably can't raise a goldfish. There's no such thing as 'making' a child behave. There is only 'trying,'" andy b wrote.

GrayGhost60, a parent of grown kids, says "a tap on the diaper," or a little spank, was once the consequence of acting up but now parents try to reason with a toddler. The commenter, andy b, acknowledges a huge "disconnect between 'new age' parenting tactics and actual scientific reality."

"Some parents seem to think that a child who doesn't know why a square peg won't fit in a round hole will somehow magically acquire advanced verbal/critical reasoning skills whenever it's convenient," he wrote.

Readers seem to give babies a bit more latitude than toddlers and older kids, conceding that air pressure may affect these tykes' ears.

But CNN commenters kicked around kids who kick seats:

"Nowadays, most parents refuse to discipline their kids (I'm not talking about infants, but 4-10 yr olds). They think the rest of us think the little monsters are as cute as they do. There is no reason for an 8-year-old to be running the aisles, screaming and kicking the seat," wrote kate683.

Some see AirAsia's move to offer kid-free zones as insensitive to families while overlooking other common complaints about fellow passengers.

"We were all kids and most of us have kids. You can deal with it. What about the fat people? The smelly people? The guy who turns his light on when it is dark so you can't sleep? The person who reclines their seat in coach? We all have issues with each other," wrote Arnie.

Others see sectioning off the plane as futile.

"Funny thing about sound. ... It can carry a long distance -- say the length of a fuselage," said a commenter known as markbaeg.

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