Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Flying Fools

A man was just awarded $240K for being harassed by JetBlue. His transgression? He wore a shirt with Arabic on it:

Jarrar, a US resident, was apprehended as he waited to board a JetBlue flight from New York to Oakland, California, and told to remove his shirt, which had written on it in Arabic: "We will not be silent."

He was told other passengers felt uncomfortable because an Arabic-inscribed T-shirt in an airport was like "wearing a T-shirt at a bank stating, I am a robber,'" the ACLU said.

Are people really this dumb? The shirt could have said anything -- "I love America" or "I'm With Stupid," but since it was written in Arabic, it means the same thing as "I am a terrorist!" Really? That it actually said "We will not be silent" is deliciously ironic. I guess we can chalk this up to one more reason Arabs hate us so much.

This of course comes on the heels of 8 American Muslims being kicked off an AirTran flight over the holidays because one of them wondered aloud where he would be sitting in the plane. Concerned citizens reported them as threats and they were not allowed to fly, even after the FBI cleared them.

I have an idea how to solve these problems. Anyone who is uncomfortable sitting next to a Muslim or someone with Arabic on their shirt should immediately rebook themselves on a different flight. Airlines should not be in the business of making bigots feel comfortable.


brownie said...

I think it's a little presumptious to stay that because someone is uncomfortable they are automatically a bigot. A bit of a stretch don't you think? People who have B.O. make me uncomfortable, but that doesn't mean I hate them.

Anyway, now that he has $240K, he can actually afford to finance a terrorist attack.

How's that for sweet irony?

Dan S said...

I'm not saying that someone is a bigot because they are uncomfortable. I'm saying someone is a bigot if they are uncomfortable simply because someone is wearing a shirt with Arabic on it.

Fingtree said...

"now that he has $240K, he can actually afford to finance a terrorist attack";
Very true statement, this is an expample of how bigotry and hateful sterotypes create terrorist types. Dropping bombs on their families and friends doesn't help either.

Robert Sievers said...

Neither does electing a government who claims a whole nation "should not exist", and then indiscriminately firing rockets into it randomly.

brownie said...

Symbols are powerful things. That's why people use them. And people are afraid of what they don't understand. Most of those people on the plane probably couldn't understand what his shirt said. For all they knew, it said "I'm about to become a martyr," therefore, they were afraid.

The guy wearing the shirt obviously was trying to make a point, given that we now know what it said. But he also didn't want many people to know what it said, at least not in this country, in order, I think, to SPECIFICALLY make people uncomfortable. Why else would he choose to put it in Arabic, and more specifically, to wear it on the day he happened to be flying.

I think the guy was baiting people on purpose and he expected to cause a stir. Maybe he was just clever enough to make a quick buck off of people's fears.

equa yona(Big Bear) said...

Yeah, those sneaky, calculating sand jockeys! No doubt having his shirt in Arabic was a plot to bilk the true blue patriotic airline. No way could he be checking to see if this really is the"land of the free and home of the brave". OOPS, guess he found out.