IN REGARD to the Aug. 27 editorial “Vance Gilbert: Wronged, but not right" and the Sept. 3 letters in response to it, headlined “Fear meets the friendly skies’’: I am a middle-aged, ordinary-looking white woman who happens to be a private pilot. I read books about airplanes frequently, and would never hesitate to pull one out to read on an plane. I feel fairly sure - I wish I didn’t - that if I had been reading a book on vintage planes on a commercial flight, no one would have noticed.
It is dispiriting and discouraging that one passenger’s fear of another’s reading a book about airplanes would be handled by turning the whole airplane around; that someone would be so fearful about a passenger reading a book on airplanes; and that the central issue in this instance is probably the reader’s gender and color. It makes me sad that this is where we are 10 years after Sept. 11, 2001.