(Update) Catching a Cab at the Airport
1:34 PM, Oct 4, 2006 • By DANIEL MCKIVERGAN
(The Australian weighs in with this editorial: "It is a situation which both demonstrates the global nature of the debate on values and which presents a textbook case of how not to deal with Islamic fundamentalists in the West. Rather than threatening such cabbies with fines or loss of licence for refusing to carry fares, the Metropolitan Airports Commission has proposed special colour-coded lights to indicate which taxis are driven by non-Muslims and those willing to tote alcohol and those where sharia applies bumper to bumper. This is exactly the wrong solution. It opens moderate Muslim taxi drivers who are willing to carry passengers possessing alcohol open to harassment from their more radical co-religionists. It violates the long-enshrined legal principle that taxis are a public conveyance open to allâ€¦."
I suspect the airport commission believed it had no choice: either give in or face chaos on the sidewalk. I also doubt this will end at the airport curbside. Some of these same cabbies may decide to keep the special colored light on while in the queue to pick up fares at area hotels, for example. What about if you call for a cab? In some places, will we reach the point where the dispatcher has to ask if you will be carrying liquor? I hope not. In any event, having the government's imprimatur on such an airport policy raises many other questions that I'm sure will be debated. Stay tuned.)
Posted on October 1, 2006:
I suspect this issue will surface at other airports in the U.S. From the AP: