After causing a public relations disaster over not removing a Donald Trump-loving passenger who screamed obscenities and raged about “Hillary bitches” on a Thanksgiving week flight, Delta Airlines said on Monday that the offender has been banned for life.
Airline CEO Ed Bastian said in an internal memo, obtained by CNBC, that Delta was refunding the tickets of all the passengers on board the flight and that the man who caused the disturbance wouldn’t be flying Delta again.
“He will never again be allowed on a Delta plane,” Bastian wrote.
In the video, posted to Facebook on Nov. 22, a man is screaming, “We got some Hillary bitches in here?” across the plane, apparently at other passengers. “Come on, baby, Donald Trump!”
“It’s your president, every goddamn one of you,” he also said. “If you don’t like it, too bad.”
Delta Airlines took a lot of flack after the video went viral, along with the news that the man was not removed from the flight.
In the statement from Bastian, he said Delta staff “made the best decision they could given the information they had” in allowing the unruly passenger to stay on the flight from Atlanta to Allentown, Pennsylvania, but noted the man would have been removed “no question” if colleagues have witnessed the outburst first-hand.
Delta’s decision not to pull the belligerent man left a particularly bad taste in people’s mouths given how unfortunately commonplace these stories have become for people of color. In August, a Muslim couple reported that a Delta flight attendant pulled them off a plane for using their cell phones and apparently saying “Allah.” On a United flight last month, a freelance writer was eventually hauled off a plane after being told she couldn’t wear her A$AP Rocky shirt and Marvel Black Panther hat. And in March, a passenger shared her blood-boiling story of “flying while black,” which involved being escorted off a flight after staff called her manner of communication “threatening.”
Flying in coach (especially during the holidays) is unpleasant enough of an experience as it is. There’s no need to make it any worse than it has to be.
Watch the original video via Facebook: