Why I No Longer Fly – Another Example

Lisa Derrick of La Figa (FDL) points us to an ABC News article about the alleged experience of one Malinda Knowles:

Knowles, 27, had boarded a JetBlue flight departing New York’s LaGuardia Airport for West Palm Beach, Fla., where her family lives. She flies to Florida several times a year, she said.

That morning in July 2010, she left her home in Harlem at 4 a.m. to catch the 6 a.m. flight. She was wearing a pair of shorts, a large T-shirt (and yes, underwear), an outfit she says she selected, in part, because it was more than 90 degrees outside.

Everyone had boarded the plane, and Knowles was in her seat sipping orange juice when she said JetBlue supervisor Victor Rodriguez approached her, demanding to know “with a smirk” if she was wearing underwear.

That alone would have been offensive enough. But according to Knowles, Rodriguez did not stop there:

“He just came up to me and asked me … basically to show him what I had on, which would have required me moving the tray table and pretty much opening my legs,” she said. “I didn’t feel comfortable doing that.”

Knowles said she eventually lifted her tray table and then, Rodriguez — who was holding a walkie-talkie — allegedly “stuck the antennae in her crotch,” between her legs, to see what she had on underneath her T-shirt, Knowles’ attorney, Brian Dratch, told ABCNews.com.

Knowles told ABCNews.com she had never seen Rodriguez before, and had passed through all the security checkpoints at LaGuardia without any problem.

Rodriguez then arranged to have the captain throw Knowles off the plane; she had to wait for a later flight.

I refuse to fly until this sort of shit comes to a complete halt. Whoever you are, whatever your purpose, unless your name is Stella… don’t touch my junk.

To you, dear reader, I urge you: If you don’t absolutely have to fly, don’t fly. Take a train (if you can find one that goes where you want to go), or drive, or, Dog help you, take the bus. If enough of us do this, maybe we can make the airlines notice the loss of fares. If we complain, nothing will be done. If a corporation… an airline… complains to the government, perhaps they will be taken seriously. All we can do is try.

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  • c  On Friday July 29, 2011 at 8:42 am

    Do we have any idea what finally happened with this woman? What the airline said, etc?

    • Steve  On Friday July 29, 2011 at 9:56 am

      c, according to the linked ABC News article, Knowles is suing JetBlue, and you, more than most of us, know how long that sort of thing can take. My guess is that the airline will prevail, because they did provide her a seat on a later plane. But perhaps Rodriguez will be… fired? somehow I doubt it, but maybe required to undergo… sensitivity training? ROTFLMFAO! I know, I know: it’s not funny at all.

      The truth is, in this day and age, airlines can get away with any damned thing, probably including sexual harassment. With luck, we’ll learn the results of the lawsuit in a few months.

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