Accommodating large people on airline
Unlike airlines, builders of new sports stadiums or movie theaters have realized that they need to make their venues fit the populations they serve.
Rather than wait for the results of this new study, they have realized that people have gotten both taller and heavier, and they are making the seats wider and providing more legroom than they did a few years ago.
Until recently, seat designers have relied on a 1950 Harvard study of train passengers that said that the average adult requires eighteen inches per seat.
A study by the Society of Automotive Engineers is underway to update that information.
If the airlines want to serve the majority of passengers, they should be making their seats more comfortable.
Air travel is a public accommodation, licensed to provide services for the public good.
As businesses, airlines have an obligation to turn a profit.
But as public services, airlines must serve their public by making their seats fit most of the people.
Pregnant women and mothers with infants do not pay for two seats.
People who are heavier than average are being singled out by Southwest, and other airlines, to bear the extra costs, even though other groups also require more than one seat.
The reason for this discrepancy is that heavy people do not fit into socially approved categories.
If they are not willing to do that, then they must accommodate those who need extra room by providing them with an extra seat or portion of a seat without charge.
They already do this for mothers with infants, football players, and people with disabilities.
Airlines feel they can get away with discriminating against such people, since there is already a lot of animosity against them. Some people may not like that fact, but it is a fact.