Passenger accuses Southwest Airlines of racist treatment


Can we please, please provide just a little detail in the headline instead of the internet standard ‘coy’ teaser?


Just out of curiosity, what essential detail is missing? The headline exactly sums up what the story is about. To my eye, there’s nothing misleading, and there’s nothing inserted or omitted to make the story sound more scandalous than it is. A teaser headline would be, “You won’t believe what happened on this Southwest Airlines flight!” or “Shocking fight over airplane seat!”


You’d think the airlines would put in security cameras, then there would be an objective record.

The airlines likely enjoy the martial law that they command on flights and cameras would interfere with that power.

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I think you just got trolled.

I don’t know if I believe the writer in this story.


And it’s not because I’m white, or have privilege, or am a racist, or any other reason other than I suspect he was more aggressive and louder than he thought he was being.

If a pilot can hear it behind a closed door through his headset, then there IS a problem.

You realize that you’d need a camera focused on EACH bench seat, and microphones with it, to get an actual objective record.

It sounds like the original lady has a stick up her butt, the size of a Redwood. . . and probably doesn’t consciously realize that she doesn’t like Scary Brown People. . . but a camera wouldn’t have caught that.

But, there’s an alternate tool: ask the people in nearby seats. . . see what THEY saw or heard. . .

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I can understand why the writer was upset about the way the couple treated him. No problem there.

But in the article to which the post links, the writer admits that he hinted STRONGLY that he would beat the crap out of the man in the seat next to him.

I got really close to him and told him, “Look, you know this plane ride is going end at some point, right? You have to get off this plane.”

The insinuation being “And I’ll be waiting.”

Essentially, at that point, the writer went from being in a stronger position to being in the weaker position. Instead of notifying a flight attendant about the situation, he turned to physical intimidation. I’d have kicked him off the plane, too, white, brown, pink or purple.


So now we have to add Flying While Brown to the list of offenses for which people can be harassed?

The author can sit by us; s’cool.

Or, “Avoid racism using this one weird trick!”


“You realize that you’d need a camera focused on EACH bench seat, and microphones with it, to get an actual objective record.”

Like this?


Last time I flew (also on Southwest) the cockpit door didn’t get closed until it was time to taxi to the runway. The story sounds like they weren’t quite ready for that stage of the flight and the pilot heard him “threaten” the husband. I would have responded with the same feelings that the author mentioned.

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Ah. Last time I was on a southwest flight was Leg 2 , as described here, and we didn’t even see the pilot and copilot until the plane landed at destination. They turn those planes around pretty quickly.

Indeed, I don’t like people who speak loudly, and I would be alarmed if I was in a public place and someone started speaking loudly. This seems to be a wholly reasonable position. At least the author seems to be being honest about his loud voice.

I guess there might have been something highly questionable about some of the behavior of the passengers, but to accuse Southwest Airlines itself of racist treatment strikes me as dubious.

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On the one hand, I agree that the writer was getting racist treatment from the woman at first. But to then jump the chain of command, and expect the captain to come back and resolve who gets to sit in which seat, that’s not reasonable either. He may have been treated unfairly by SouthWest, but if so, it was in the sense of the parent hollering to the back seat, “I don’t care who started it, both of you shut up!”

By the time the captain is called back to the cabin, it has stopped being a dispute about seating, and the writer completely fails to understand this. Were I a passenger on this flight, I would not have confidence in a captain who took time out of his pre-flight checks to carefully interview bystanders with the wisdom of Solomon so our hero can sit in the set he wants.


I know if I saw a couple with a baby and an empty seat between them, and the plane still had numerous other seats available, it would be the last choice I’d make, both for my own comfort and just common courtesy.


whoah, careful – that gets you accused of “blaming the victim” around these parts. trust me, it’s a horrible experience and you don’t want it.

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If blaming the victim wasn’t so fucking common then accusations of blaming the victim wouldn’t be so fucking common. You can do your part by, ya know, not blaming victims.


What if we don’t know who the victim is here?


i rest my case.

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