This past Sunday, a paying passenger was forcibly removed from a United Airlines (UA) flight in Chicago’s O’Hare Airport, in the process beaten and his face bloodied by airport security officers removing him. The paying passenger’s crime, the reason for this violent removal from an aircraft after being seated? UA needed the seat so some of their own employees could travel instead.
The President of UA, and lots of otherwise normal people, are currently defending the actions of these security officers.
In what world does a business claim the fucking right to deny service to a customer who has ALREADY PAID FOR SERVICE?
In what world does that same business get Government law enforcement, hired and paid for by the Government of the People, By the People, For the People, to do their bidding in a purely commercial squabble with a customer WHO HAS ALREADY PAID FOR SERVICE?
In what world does Government-paid security officials claim the right to forcibly beat up a non-violent unarmed person who has in fact done nothing except EXPECT TO RECEIVE SERVICE FOR WHICH HE HAS ALREADY FUCKING PAID FOR?
In what world do people in authority, both Government and Senior Executives of the business involved, defend the actions of beating up an American Citizen/Paying Customer for EXPECTING SERVICE FOR WHICH THAT CUSTOMER HAS ALREADY FUCKING PAID?
Apparently, this is the world we are now living in.
Although it may be relevant that the passenger who was removed was a 69 year-old ethnic Asian doctor, and needed to get home on schedule to attend to patients who depended upon him, it’s beside the point. It may be relevant that although Contract of Carriage Rule 25 allows an airline to refuse passage to a paying customer, rule 21 actually applies because the customer was already seated and had extenuating circumstances why he should not be forced to give up his seat; it doesn’t fucking matter.
What matters is that an American citizen paid airfare to a commercial entity for a flight home, boarded the airplane and was seated, then told to give up his seat and wait for another flight so an employee of that commercial entity could fly instead. When the American citizen refused, employees of that commercial entity called in Government law enforcement officials who beat him up and forcibly dragged him off the airplane, simply because a commercial entity asked them to.
What matters even more is that people in authority, both commercial and Government, are defending these actions.
This is what a police state with no regard for “Rule of Law” looks like. We as a nation have gone pretty far down that rabbit hole, and I’m not sure how we find our way back out.
Editor’s Update, April 12: After watching the video of this passenger being forcibly removed, what disturbs me the most is actions of the other passengers. Although they did take video footage, NOT ONE PERSON attempted to intervene with law enforcement.
While I can almost excuse the passengers for being frightened of arrest if they intervened; where the fuck was the airline crew and pilot? The pilot was ultimately responsible for his plane and passengers, why didn’t he/she intervene? In my opinion, the flight crew is just as responsible for this atrocity as the cops, and should be held equally responsible.
As for the other passengers; when do we reach a point when witnessing blatant abuse of power by law enforcement rises to the level where citizens have the “right,” the obligation, to physically intervene? At what point does people of a “free society” have an obligation to take back power from Government officials representing We the People?
- New York Post: Dragged passenger kicks and screams his way off overbooked flight
- Law Newz: Cops’ Side of Story About Viral United Passenger Removal Video Gets Even Weirder