The democratic legislator flight dust-up is just the latest airline controversy



Airline incidents that made headlines

A look back at some of the more popular airline incidents that made headlines

A lawyer who claims United Airlines gave her seat away to a Democratic congressman, a singer who allegedly ruled out of an airline lounge on her shoes, airline controversies are neither few, nor far between.

The rising prominence of social media, and a near-monopoly of the airline industry, a contribution to the growing news of the airline customers wrongly impeded as they travel, lawyer Arthur Alan Wolk, who specializes in aviation law, told Fox News.

These incidents are “happening more because the airlines feel that they are empowered to abuse their passengers the feeling that there are no consequences,” Cloud said.

Cloud says that the chance of the aviation industry to improve it for the customers is bleak, even zero.”

Read on for a look at some recent airline controversies.

Political privilege?

United passenger Jean-Marie Simon says the airline gave her first-class seat on a Dec. 18 flight to Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, a Texas Democrat. United, Simon claims, threatened to yank her from the flight after she complained and took a picture of the politician, the Houston Chronicle reports.

A gate attendant at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, said Simon at the time of boarding that her ticket was not in the system, the newspaper. Told her seat was taken, Simon was allegedly taking place in the Economy Plus and receive a $500 voucher.

“We were concerned about this issue and took immediate steps to fully understand what happened. After a thorough review of our electronic records, we find that when receiving a notification that the Flight 788 was postponed due to the weather, the customer seems to have cancelled her flight from Houston to Washington, D. C., in the United mobile app,” United told Fox News in a statement. “As part of the normal preboarding process, gate agents started clearing the standby and upgrade customers including the first customer on the waiting list for an upgrade.”

United also said that the contact with Simon to explain what happened, to apologize for her experience, and will be offering compensation as a gesture of goodwill.”

Jackson Lee said in a Facebook post,” I asked for nothing exceptional or out of the ordinary and receive nothing exceptional or out of the ordinary.”

Simon, who says that she not cancel her ticket, also took a photo of Jackson-Lee on the plane.

The legislature, the Chronicle stated, said in her statement that she could hear Simon talking with an African-American flight attendant and Simon took a picture.

“Since this was not the fault of me, the way in which the individual to continue to occur was found to be, on closer inspection, because I was an Afro-American woman, seemingly an easy target along with the Afro-American flight attendant who was very, very nice,” she wrote. “This saddens me, especially at this time of the year to get all of the things that we need to work to help people. But in the spirit of this season and from the sincerity of my heart, if it is seen that I had something to do with this, I am kind enough to just say: “sorry.”

Simon told the Chronicle that the congress and the comments were accusing her of racism: “I had no idea who was in my chair when I complained at the gate that my seat had been given to someone else; there is no way you can see who is in a place of in the terminal,” Simon told the newspaper.

Simon also claimed that a few minutes after taking the photo, a separate flight attendant asked if she “was a problem,” but that Simon said she just wanted to go home.

Simon later allegedly wrote a letter to the United CEO, publishing it on social media. A “resolution manager” then contacted her and apologized at least a half-dozen times, according to her account.

Simon, who is looking for an apology, said Monday on Facebook that they haven’t received one yet.

Footwear fail

The English singer Joanne Catherall, singer of The Human League, made the international headlines this month after she said that she was denied access to a business-class Qantas lounge in Melbourne, Australia.

“Access denied @Qantas business class lounge in @MelairMelbourne Airport apparently Ugg Australia Boots are considered to be sleepwear by the lady who works there, although there is no problem in any of the other lounges so far,” she tweeted. “The staff they suggested that I go to one of the shops and purchase a pair of shoes.”

Hi Joanne, we strive to remain consistent and keep our Lounge dress guidelines for all of our guests . You will find all the details here: Mark

— Qantas (@Qantas) December 14, 2017

“Hi Joanne, we strive to remain consistent and keep our Lounge dress guidelines for all of our guests,” the airline tweeted, including a link to the domestic lounge dress guidelines, which consider Uggs nightwear.

“Why would a @UGG boot that I wear outside in all weather conditions, be classified as sleepwear in @Qantas lounge, but nowhere else that I have ever been on this earth ?” Catherall asked.

“Hi Joanne, we do not accept them in our lounges as you can see on the dress-guidelines,” an airline other tweet said.

Why would a @UGG boot that I wear outside in all weather conditions, be classified as sleepwear in @Qantas lounge, but nowhere else that I have ever been on this earth ?

— Joanne The Human League (@Lubycat) December 14, 2017

“Strange, I had no problem in either the Perth or Adelaide @Qantas lounges wear my Uggs, even though they are apparently on the no go list in these 2 airports,” Catherall tweeted.

The airline answer here? “Understood, Joanne, keep in mind each lounge is subject to the discretion of the team. We will review your feedback so that we can improve our services.”

Understood Joanne, please keep in mind that each and every lounge is subject to the discretion of the team. We will review your feedback so that we can improve our services. Sol

— Qantas (@Qantas) December 15, 2017

“We understand fully that nobody likes to be denied at the door, but we always have a smart casual dress standards for our lounges, which are similar to those in place for most of the clubs and restaurants, an Extensive spokesperson told The Independent. “In the last few years we have clear feedback from a lounge-members that they wanted that these existing guidelines are applied rigorously.”

Lewd comments

Randi Zuckerberg, Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, the sister, claimed that a co-passenger on her Alaska Airlines flight to Mexico made “lewd sexual comments” in the direction of her.

Zuckerberg claims that the employees on the flight last month stood there and let it happen, with a flight attendant allegedly told her, “don’t take it personally, this guy just not have a filter.”

Shortly after her flight, Zuckerberg wrote a letter to Alaska Airlines details of the incident.

“He started talking to me about touching herself, asked me if I fantasized about the female colleague who I was traveling with a rating and comment on the bodies of women boarding the plane as she walked with us, and many more equally horrifying and insulting comments,” she said in the letter, as seen in her Twitter message.

Feeling disgusted & demoted after an @AlaskaAir flight for which the passenger next to me made repeated lewd sexual comments. The flight attendants told me that he was a frequent flyer, brushed off his behavior and gave him to drink. I think that $ means more than our safety? My letter:

— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) November 30, 2017

Alaska Airlines began an investigation into the incident, the airline said in a tweet.

The passenger who allegedly made the comments was temporarily suspended by the airline, Zuckerberg wrote in a later tweet.

What you have shared with us is very worrying. We have started an investigation and have withdrawn this passenger travel privileges pending the outcome of that research. We wish to discuss this further with you. Please DM us so we can connect tonight.

— Alaska Airlines (@AlaskaAir) November 30, 2017

UPDATE: I just got off the phone with two managers of @AlaskaAir who told me that they are conducting an investigation and have temporarily suspended these passenger travel privileges. Thank you for taking this seriously.

— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) November 30, 2017

Mother care

The Harvard Law student Briana Williams claims that she and her daughter were booted from an American Airlines flight this summer, after the application of the 4-year-old in the stroller while the plane was delayed, the New York Daily News reported.

Williams, 24, told the newspaper their Aug. 21. New York City-bound flight had a delay of a few hours. The plane reportedly went back to the gate and the passengers had to get off.

Williams asked the airline staff for the pram, which had checked while she was exciting, the paper said. The staff decreased.

“I told a member of the crew that I was not going to be leaving the plane without my stroller,” Williams said. Later said it was “very disgruntled and aggressive” of the pilot, and says that he contacted the police to boot her from the flight.

Williams and her daughter were on a flight in the morning, the report said.


Jet Blue Passengers Stranded for 7 Hours

“The pilot put me in a potentially dangerous situation with the enforcement of the law as a young, black woman, I said that I was a ‘threat'” Williams, who is planning to pursue legal action, told the newspaper. “This type of rhetoric paralyzes the African-American community, and I want to ensure that the policies in place that regulate the pilot margin opportunities.”

She says that they rejected the American offer of 25,000 miles.

The airline told Fox News put her on another flight was in “the interest of everyone involved,” and said that she of the mile. The carrier also said that it “does not tolerate discrimination of any kind.”


Patriotic display

In October, a Georgia woman said she was forbidden to sing the national anthem with co-passengers on board a Delta flight that was also carrying one of the four U.S. troops were killed that same month during an attack in Niger.

Pamela Dee Gaudry, who is married to a Vietnam War veteran, received the support of the other passengers and the scheduled singing of the national anthem to honor the fallen soldier and his family. But in a now-viral Facebook video, Gaudry said she was prevented from singing by the chief stewardess, that her knowing the song was against Delta’s policy.

She also said in her video that she was “humiliated” by what they saw as her “lack of courage” for following orders and not sing.

Since her video Gaudry said that she has offered an apology of the Delta, and the airline also confirmed that the national anthem is not against its policies.

Changing your seat without explanation

In a series of tweets, right-wing commentator Ann Coulter slammed Delta for giving her seat to another woman on a flight from New York to West Palm Beach, Florida, on July 15.

Hey @Delta, you mind telling me why the “emergency” to move someone else in the chair that I had carefully pre-selected and booked?

— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) July 15, 2017

So glad I took the time the investigate of the aircraft & PRE-BOOK a place on @Delta, so what can the woman waltz in the last min & take a seat.

— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) July 15, 2017

Coulter later told Fox News that if they get a “ticket agent picked up the ticket” and informed her that her seat had been changed as a result of an “emergency.”


She said that she sat in the original seat anyway, until she was told to move by a flight attendant who was not able to give an explanation for the seat to change.

“[The passenger] was not an older person, not a sickly person, a great person,” Coulter said.

Suckiest @Delta I moved from my PRE-BOOKED SEAT and gave it to a woman, not elderly, a child, or sick. I have pictures so don’t lie, @Delta!

— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) July 16, 2017

.@Delta worker questionnaire: What is your ideal job: Prison guard? Animal handler? Stasi policeman? All of the above: ADOPTED!

— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) July 16, 2017

Hey @Delta, if it was so important for the dachshund-legged woman to take my seat, they should have BOOKED THE SEAT in ADVANCE. Like I did.

— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) July 16, 2017

y of five

A family of five, and said that she was unfairly kicked off a flight from JetBlue on 2 July, after a confrontation with an airline employee.

Danny and Mandy Raanan said that they the trip from Fort Lauderdale to New York with their three young daughters – one of whom kicked the back of another passenger.

Mandy said she apologized to the other passenger, but the family was asked to leave the plane.


Delta faced with clearance for the ejection of the family

JetBlue said in a statement that the incident was not as innocent as described. “After a verbal disagreement that physical threats and profanities at a in the vicinity of the customer, the aircraft door was reopened and our airports team politely asked the customers steps to discuss the situation,” JetBlue said.

The airline thanked the employees for their “professional handling” of the situation and said it would “examine whether the customers of the conduct of the warrants, restrictions on JetBlue travel” in the future.

The ‘figure’

Lucie Bahetoukilae, who only speaks French, gave her ticket to an airline employee and boarded a plane in Newark, New Jersey, think the next stop would be Paris. When she got to her seat and found another woman, a flight attendant sat her down in an empty chair.

Nearly 3,000 miles later, Bahetoukilae landed in San Francisco.

In what United Airlines is considered to be a “horrible mistake” in May, Bahetoukilae to board the wrong plane after her flight’s gate switched at the last minute. She said that the notice is not in the French, and they have not received an e-mail with her of the gate change.


Once in San Francisco, Bahetoukilae had to wait 11 hours for United was able to get her on a flight to France.

“She could have been a terrorist killed people on the flight, and they knew not that they not to catch.”

– Diane Miantsoko

Diane Miantsoko, the woman’s cousin, told WABC-TV that she was worried about United security protocol.

“With everything going on in this country, people should be more careful,” Miantsoko said. “They didn’t pay attention. My aunt could someone. They can be a terrorist and killed people on the flight, and they knew not that they not to catch.”

United apologized for the error in a statement and said it was “working with our team in Newark to prevent this from happening again.”

Whose registered office is, right?

Delta apologized after a California couple and their two children were booted from a plane was overbooked when the parents refused to give up for an extra seat, which they had bought.

Brian Schear said he, his wife and two children on board a flight from Maui, Hawaii to Los Angeles on April 23, and was asked to be an extra chair that they had bought for their older son-he had ultimately with another flight. Because the son was not present, Schear said the family planned to use his seat to one of the younger children.


But the flight was overbooked, and Schear were asked to indicate in the chair. When the family refused, they were made to leave the plane. The family booked new tickets home on another airline.

“Sorry for the unhappy experience of our customers with Delta, and we have achieved them to reimbursement of their travel and to provide additional compensation,” the airline said.

“I would rather go to prison’

Dr. David Dao was sitting on a United struggle in Chicago bound for Louisville, Kentucky, on 9 April, when he was asked for his seat on an overbooked flight to make room for the crew.

Dao declined, explaining that he was a doctor, who had to be at work early the next morning.

“I would rather go to prison.”

– David Dao

“I’m not going,” Dao repeatedly said. “I would rather go to prison.”

Disturbing cell phone images show Dao dragged from the plane, seemingly unconscious, by security officials that went viral. During the altercation, Dao suffered a concussion, lost two of his teeth and broke his nose, his lawyer said.

Dao and the United “reached an amicable settlement” later in April.

“We look forward to the implementation of the improvements that we have announced, our customers at the centre of everything we do,” United said in a statement at the time of the settlement.

Fox News’ Madeline Farber contributed to this report.

Kaitlyn Schallhorn is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @K_Schallhorn.

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