Tuesday night, two American Muslim women were removed from an American Airlines plane after a flight attendant said the women made him feel “unsafe.” In a Facebook post, Niala Mohammad, a journalist for Voice of America, wrote that the plane she and her friend were taking from Miami had been grounded for about five hours when her friend started talking with a male passenger behind her about the delay. A male flight attendant then approached Mohammad’s friend, accusing her of “instigating” objections from passengers and telling her, “If you have a problem, you can get off the plane.”
The attendant, who was not wearing a badge, refused to give the women his name, and responded angrily when the two friends took a picture of him so they could identify him in a complaint. He told the women that taking a picture was a federal offense, and a female attendant asked them to delete the photo. An American Airlines customer relations representative came on board and escorted the women off the plane into the company of armed air marshals and police officers. The women were then told that they would have take the next flight because the flight attendant had felt threatened by them.
An American Airlines spokesman told The Independent that the women had been booted for videotaping and taking pictures of the attendant, despite his requests that they stop. “This was a case of non-compliance,” said the spokesman. “At no moment did discrimination come up.” In a response to the official statement from the airline, Mohammad said she was “disappointed in American Airlines for not taking ownership of their mistake or reprimanding the airline attendant for his rude behavior. I feel insulted and the non-compliance statement is a complete and utter lie.”
Read the full story at The Independent.