The leader of the powerful Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) wants Trump protestors who stormed the U.S. Capitol yesterday banned from commercial airlines.
AFA Wants Trump Protestors Banned From Airlines
Yesterday, the U.S. Capitol was invaded for the first time since the War of 1812, when the British looted and burned the building. Pro-Trump protestors descended upon the Capitol and overwhelmed Capitol Police, taking over offices and even descending to the House and Senate floors.
This came after a day of several disruptive flights in which pro-Trump supporters heckled Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT), projected a Trump sign on the ceiling of the aircraft, and in which many refused to wear masks.
The preceding days have prompted airlines to move flights crews out of downtown Washington, DC hotels and forced American Airlines to add staffing at Washington National Airport in order to better pinpoint potential agitators.
But the AFA is not stopping there. President Sara Nelson has demanded that such protestors be banned from flying.
“Air travel is safe because everyone follows a strict set of rules, based on the spirit that ‘we’re all in this together.’ The mob mentality behavior that took place on several flights to the D.C. area yesterday was unacceptable and threatened the safety and security of every single person onboard. It will not happen again. There’s a reason that there are strict penalties and fines for failing to comply with crewmember instructions. Enforcement keeps everyone safe.
“Our first priority in aviation safety and security is to keep any problems on the ground. Some of the people who traveled in our planes yesterday participated in the insurrection at the Capitol today. Their violent and seditious actions at the Capitol today create further concern about their departure from the DC area. Acts against our democracy, our government, and the freedom we claim as Americans must disqualify these individuals from the freedom of flight.
Nelson is an extreme partisan zealot…just read her tweets from the last four years. Her response to extreme partisan zealotry is also extreme: ban them.
View From The Wing argues to “capriciously deny freedom of travel to people outside of the rule of law – is a mob response and no better than that of the protestors.”
He also adds that such a move “fails to draw a distinction between people who exercised their first amendment right of protest and those who acted illegally and violently.”
Maybe I’m not reading between the lines in Nelson’s comments, but I do see that distinction. If she is indeed singling out those who stormed and looted the Capitol versus those who peacefully protested, I would be in agreement with her.
Then again, beyond the few who very publicly showcased their identity, how do you actually determine who engaged in these activities? The answer is you likely cannot and her action plan becomes impossible to actually act upon.
Sadly, I don’t see this ending well. Protestors will point to Nelson’s silence when protestors stormed and looted over the summer, finding her outrage selective and convenient to her partisanship. That may fuel even further disruptions onboard. This isn’t about equivalency, mind you, but perceived equivalency. I expect disruptive flights in the days ahead and even more violence as President-Elect Biden assumes office in two weeks. Folks, if you have time, take a look at U.S. history in the 1850s todays. The parallels are not comforting…
Do you agree with the AFA that those Trump protestors who entered the Capitol should be banned from flying commercial?