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American Airlines accused of shocking anti-Semitism

DansDeals tells how American Airlines allegedly kicked an unaccompanied minor Orthodox Jewish passenger off a flight, due to the behavior of another Orthodox Jewish passenger he didn’t even know…

American accused of collective punishment against Jewish passengers

This incident occurred on Sunday, May 5, 2024 and involves an American Airlines flight from Cleveland (CLE) to Washington (DCA). The flight was operated by the American Eagle subsidiary, on an Embraer E175 with registration code N123HQ.

Two young Orthodox Jewish passengers were kicked off the flight before departure and did not know each other before the incident. Let me start by pointing out that these are all allegations and there is no video footage of the incident because both passengers only had flip phones.

According to reports, a 17-year-old was seated in 23A. Shortly after he boarded, a gate agent boarded and told him to collect his belongings and follow him off the plane. The boy obeyed, although he didn’t know why. When he asked the gate agent what had happened, he was told that he must know what he had done wrong, but he had no idea.

At the gate, he encountered a 21-year-old seated in 10D, who had also been kicked off the flight. In this case, we at least know why he was fired (although it’s questionable to what extent this was necessary):

  • While at the gate before boarding, the 21-year-old noticed what appeared to be a dent in the tail of the plane. So he called his mother to express his concerns and she told him to tell a flight attendant.
  • When he boarded, he informed the flight attendant about the bump in the tail
  • He felt uncomfortable about the situation, so when the gate agent boarded, he approached the gate agent and asked if he had noticed the bump in the tail , then he sat down again.
  • Feeling ignored, he noticed the pilot talking to the gate agent at the front of the plane, then went to the front of the plane to ask about the dent again in the queue.
  • The pilot told him to sit down, but he wanted assurance that the plane had been noticed and inspected, so he asked again and the pilot told him to sit down.
  • He asked the pilot again if he was listening to his concerns, so the pilot told him a third time to sit down.
  • The gate agent reminded him that federal regulations require him to follow the crew’s instructions, so he returned to his seat.
  • A few minutes later, the gate agent boarded and told him to get off the plane.
  • Then the crew pointed at the 17-year-old at the rear of the plane and told him to get off the plane, although he had no interaction with the 21-year-old or with the crew.

Once removed from the plane, both travelers were informed that they would be put on the U.S. blacklist and would have to make different travel arrangements. When asked what they had done wrong, they were told that they should know what they had done.

This incident occurred on an American Eagle flight

My take on this disturbing incident

Let me emphasize once again that we only have one side of the story, which of course should be investigated and all sides should make their views heard. With that in mind, a few thoughts…

In the case of the 21-year-old who repeatedly questioned the crew about the dent in the plane’s tail, it’s hard to know what to make of it. It’s good to bring something to the crew’s attention, even if it definitely went too far, reportedly asked five times during the boarding process.

I also can’t help but assume that maybe he was just confused? The Embraer E175 curves around the tail in a way that might look like a hump to some, so I think that’s the most likely explanation. I have to imagine the crew could have done a better job of de-escalating the situation, but let’s ignore that for now.

What’s horrifying here is that an unrelated 17-year-old was removed from the plane, with seemingly no connection other than his similar appearance:

  • The two men claim they did not meet until they both got off the plane and arrived at the gate together.
  • The 17-year-old had just boarded and expressed no concerns about the “bump” in the plane.

Everything here indicates that this is simply collective punishment for the Jewish passengers. At least I don’t have any other logical theory. Unfortunately, this wouldn’t be the first time something like this had happened.

In 2022, Lufthansa collectively punished a flight’s Orthodox Jewish passengers for the actions of some, and a Lufthansa representative even stated that “everyone must pay for” the actions of one couple. Lufthansa ended up having to pay millions of dollars for this incident.

Lufthansa committed this type of collective punishment in 2022

Conclusion

American Airlines is accused of removing two Orthodox Jewish passengers from a Cleveland-Washington flight. A 21-year-old passenger reportedly upset the crew, after repeatedly mentioning how the tail was dented and without following the crew members’ instructions. Meanwhile, a 17-year-old passenger was also deported, although he did not know the other passenger and had nothing to do with him.

An investigation absolutely needs to be done, and if it is true that the 17-year-old was simply kicked out because of his similar appearance, then serious corrective action needs to be taken.

What do you think of this incident?