I try to be as considerate as I can be when I fly. I don't recline my seat but maybe a few inches and if it's an hour or hour and half flight, I wouldn't normally recline it hardly at all. I agree with Norm re/ the lawsuit but doubt you would get far. And too I agree with Todd, although his method of having "Vinnie " handle the situation would certainly put an end to the problem, it's impractical to break a leg, no matter how much you would like to!
Only one time did I ever say anything to anyone on a plane and that was a few years ago. My wife and I were returning from Rio and the guy sitting behind her after about an hour into the flight slumped back in his seat and proceeded to put his feet on the back of my wife's seat and every little bit he would push and thrash with his feet, sometimes so hard her head would bounce. I put up with it for about an hour, hoping he would finally get tired in his position and change and take his feet of her seat back---no such luck. Finally, I told her to change seats with me. We did and no sooner had I had sat down he let go with a big thump and push against the back of my seat, causing my head to jerk. I undid my seat belt, turned around on my knees and pushed his feet off the eat. He looked up , all wide eyed and I gave him a big smile and motioned for him to lean close--he did and I asked if he spoke English---he said he did --I told him for 2 hours he had been battering the back of my wife's seat with his feet and that I had changed seats with her and I was not expecting to spend another 10 hours being jostled around by his feet and that if he didn't keep them off my seat, I would put my foot somewhere besides in his seat and did he understand that clearly? He said he did and that was that- no more problem.
A few days ago Kuki had a post re/ whether people ( cruisers ) were less sophisticated now than years ago. I said then and say now, it's just that so many people travel today than did several years ago, you have a bigger mix in the pot so you're bound to get more self-centered people who care nothing for their fellow travelers, whether on a ship, plane or bus.
And Luanne, I agree with you too that in a lot of cases the children have a hard time flying--their ears hurt, it's very uncomfortable for a small child to be confined in such tight quarters with little or no room to move about. That's hard on them and they respond in the only way they know how--they become squirmy, restless and cry. Many times the parents simply don't seem to have the good sense to properly handle the kids and offer help and comfort, all to the agitation of the child and other passengers.
Traveling today regardless of how or where, has changed folks!