Video: Angry Woman Kicked Off Plane For Harassing Trump Supporter
Jay Dawson February 10th 2017 Entertainment
It's been a turbulent year for airline passengers. With incident after incident of people being dragged of planes, abused, and - thanks, British Airways - not even being able to get on flights, flying as a mode of transport just seems to get worse and worse. But this particular episode took airplane theatrics to an all-new low. This is the moment that shocked an entire cabin full of passengers...
People were settling in before a six-hour flight from Baltimore to Seattle when it all went down. Boarding had only just finished on the Air Alaska flight, and the plane was still sitting at the gate. All of a sudden, a furious commotion erupted. But it wasn't some full-on drunken brawl - it was just one very angry woman, piling abuse after abuse on one poor, innocent man.
Air travel is a highly-charged environment these days, full of weird rules, long delays and impatient customers, and no flight attendant was going to put up with this kind of scene. The crew of the Air Alaska did what they had to do, and did it swiftly, calling the police. They stormed onto the plane and dragged both the woman and her husband off. And the other passengers' reactions were priceless...
Who Was She?
We actually don't know who she was, since her details seem to have been suppressed by the airline. From the video, it's pretty clear that she and her husband are in their late 50s to mid-60s, and we do know that she was a Portland resident trying to make her way home. What's also clear - painfully clear, actually - is that she's also a pretty staunch Democrat supporter.
Which is where the abuse that she dished out all started from. She's a liberal, but not the kind that seems to practice the tolerance they so dogmatically preach. No matter what your political views are, and no matter what their candidate does to marginalized members of society, it didn't give her the right to then bully and belittle another person, let alone a fellow citizen of the United States. It still remains to be seen, though, if she took home that message.
All About Trump
In case you've been in a coma for the last year, or living on an island with only a volleyball for entertainment, it's our duty to inform you that Donald Trump is now the President of America. More than possibly any other leader in the history of the States (although we're quick to forget Reagan, Nixon, Johnson, and Bush), he's divided the population with his sometimes archaic, sometimes wistfully American-Dream-like views.
His presidential campaign, and the aftermath of it up until the present day, has seen mass protests, brawls, name-calling, and a general media frenzy. Not a day has gone by that there's not some new controversy or some new think piece on Where It All Went Wrong. His election has channeled some primal fury on both sides of the political table, and like this incident suggests, these fresh wounds don't look like they'll be healed any time soon.
At the risk of getting arrested ourselves by the TSA, we can only describe the atmosphere of the flight as a powder keg, ready to explode. Most of the passengers were flying home after attending President Trump's inauguration, many of them Republicans and wearing their Trump supporter merchandise. But there were also more than a few there who had gone into Washington as hardcore Democrats, joining the masses who were marching on Capitol Hill. If there was ever a meeting of two so disparate groups, this would have to be it.
When Scott Koteskey got on his flight, he took his window seat next to the woman and her husband. According to later reports by Alaskan Airlines staff, the woman had already been confrontational to a number of passengers in the boarding area. Koteskey didn't know that yet, though, and given the hat he was wearing, he was surprised by the seemingly innocent question the woman put to him: "did you come here to cheer or to protest?"
Koteskey's response was priceless: "I came here to celebrate democracy, ma'am." Not a bad way to try and defuse the situation, except that on this particular person, it didn't work. And that's what we have to remember through all this. No matter what happened - and let's leave the Russian hacking stuff out, it's a red herring - Trump's election was a result of democracy. If you don't like the result, it's kinda too bad. Your fellow citizens decided it for you. If you're really so sore about it, change it for next time.
But like we said, no matter how Koteskey responded, his effort to be civil was doomed from the start. The woman had a bone to pick, triggered by his Trump supporter gear, and she was going to let loose no matter what. So she launched into a tirade that stunned the cabin...
There was no defense against the woman's torrent of fury. Aside from Koteskey's initial response, he was helpless in her tirade. It was all one way - and here are the choicest cuts: "She said it was good that I didn't have children [because] they didn't deserve to be raised by someone like me". "You pretend that you have the moral high ground but you put that man's finger on the nuclear button," she said. "That man doesn't believe in 'climate change.' Do you believe in gravity?"
That wasn't the end of it. In disbelief at his treatment, Koteskey started to record the incident on his phone, as did a few other passengers. "I'm entitled to get drunk and puke in your lap! I'm going to throw up right in your lap! You make me sick! Don't talk to me! Don't look at me! Don't you dare even put your arm on that rest. You disgust me! You should be ashamed of yourself! You are a bigot. You should get off this plane!"
She Just Doesn't Give Up
At this point, she's raised the attention of the cabin crew (along with most of the plane). When they come over to investigate, the woman gets even more furious. At first she demands that Koteskey be removed, on the sole basis that he's a Trump supporter. When that request is (understandably) denied, she refuses to calm down, starting up once again with the stream of bile.
The reaction from the crew is swift and sure. They call the airport police, who come on board and drag both the woman and her husband (who's no doubt not very impressed at the whole situation) off the plane. What else are they going to do? Sure, there's been a few strange incidents in the last year with people being kicked off for no reason, but all in all, the cabin crew do a damn fine job.
The Chants Strike Up
This is where the fun really began. As the woman was taken, kicking and literally screaming off the plane, the passengers started cheering. Some applauded, while a couple more started up a rousing chant of "USA! USA!". These weren't just Republican flunkeys, mind you: the Democrats in the crowd were cheering just as hard. It was almost as much fun - and uniting - as watching Canada go down in the hockey.
What's more, after the older couple were pulled off, another man took the place next to Koteskey. According to Koteskey, the man was a Democrat, and their pleasant exchange was almost the polar opposite of what had just taken place. "[We] had a very good discussion about the beauty of free speech and coming together when people insult and commit acts of violence just for having differing views."
In Praise Of Unity
And there, ladies and gentlemen, is the whole point of this entire ugly scenario. Views differ. That's a fact of life, and a very big fact of political debate. People have a whole range of personal and public reasons, selfish and selfless, for voting for who they think will best do the job. No matter what their candidate proposes to do, or how atrocious they may seem, they are not their voters. The people who vote for them are regular folk, doing what their beliefs tell them to do.
Creating this weird divide between people, just because they voted for someone who you think is wrong, is never going to fix anything. Insulting people and making them doubt their self-worth is never going to help. All it does is make the problem worse, and make their opinions even more entrenched. There's a reason that people voted for Trump, and there's a reason that people voted for Hilary: because people were on the defensive. Because they felt they were underrepresented. And an inclusive society, one which doesn't make people feel like they're less than nothing, will make people listen, think, appreciate, and not desire to smash a system that's not working for them.
All On Video
Whether you agree or disagree, whether you wish that this woman would get a medal or wish she was stripped of her citizenship, there's never been a better time in the world that these sorts of debates can be had. This isn't just something that got the whole aircraft cabin talking - it's something that's lit up the internet. It's something that's become so much bigger than what it started out as.
Both Koteskey and another passenger captured this whole ugly affair, so you can watch it for yourself and learn a thing or two. It's fascinating stuff, especially when you consider how neatly it captures this whole "nation divided" kinda thing. It also really makes you appreciate that some people ignore the warnings about using their cellphone on a plane. Otherwise we would never be able to catch a glimpse of humanity at its most embarrassing.