Sunday, May 31, 2015
You didn't get your way because........... wtf?
"I'm sitting on a United airlines flight in the air 30,000 feet above and I am in tears of humiliation from discrimination," posted Tahera Ahmad.
Tahera Ahmad, 31 is a Muslim chaplain and director of interfaith engagement at Northwestern University and she was traveling from Chicago to Washington for a conference that promoted dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian youth. Ahmad's problem began when they were serving the complimentary beverages during the flight. The flight attendant asked her what she would like and she stated that she wanted an unopened can of diet coke.
The attendant returned with an opened can which Ahmad objected to. She stated that she wanted the unopened can for hygienic reasons and even though the attendant stated that no one drank from the can, she still did not want the drink. She again demanded the unopened can and the attendant explained that they could not give out unopened cans to passengers. Ahmad was further upset when the attendant handed an unopened can of beer to a passenger in her row.
In her post she has already begun to explain that she was being discriminated against because of her style of dress so I am going to guess that she was already escalating the demand for a can. She somehow thought that the other passengers would come her aid and chime in on demanding Ahmad be given a full, unopened can of soda. They did not according to her statements but instead verbally attacked her. She added that she was crying because she thought that people would defend her demand and they instead attacked her.
United has stated that the crew talked with Ahmad when the plane landed as well the attendant trying multiple times to work out the situation while in the air. The company had also reached out to Ahmad on Saturday to apologize to her but it seems that Ahmad is not happy with their attempts. She posted on Sunday that she felt that United failed in it's labeling the incident as a can issue and not a discrimination problem. She is waiting for a written apology for the pain and hurt she experienced as well as the hurtful words.
I am not sure what world Ahmad lives in but any time I have flown in the past years......... it is extremely rare if I can get an entire can of soda when they are serving drinks. It has been opened every time that I ever got one as well. I never realized that I was being discriminated against while I flew all those airline flights. I should have loudly stood up for my right to demand a service from the one I was paying to fly me, even though it is not guaranteed?
I do feel that she should not have had to take the brunt of the name calling but I think just from her description of incident, she did a lot to escalate it in the beginning. As I have said, I fly often and I know that there are many uncomfortable, cranky people jammed in too small seats who would use it as an excuse to vent their own frustration. I don't think United needs to crawl on it's knees to apologize to Ahmad and the online rant parade supporting you has missed a very important point........ the airlines don't make it a habit of handing out a full can of soda to anyone who asks.
The simple solution would have been to do what I do on flights, if you were so concerned about hygiene Ahmad....... buy a bottled soda before you board the plane and you have it all to yourself and you can verify that it is clean enough for you. Stomping your feet and trying to claim this "horrible" thing happened to you because you are Muslim is a cop-out and whiny excuse for not getting what you thought you should get.
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