An American Eagle flight was grounded on the runway in NYC (during a heat wave) for five hours. People started to complain. Jose Serrano, flight attendant for American Eagle, yells back at the passengers.
“If you have the balls to try [and get off the plane], now’s your chance.” Etc.
(No one tried.)
The facts of the case are not disputable, because there are phone videos all over the place. Nevertheless, in the face of objective evidence, the news story, as the agent of the corporation, manages to do something that even almost swayed me:
American Airlines issued an email from a first-class passenger defending the flight attendant and blaming the incident on “the most horrible display of passenger aggressiveness” toward Serrano.
And suddenly I was in the midst of the class struggle hardwired into all our lives. Suddenly, this wasn’t about gay=crazy flight attendants who open emergency chutes to get TV shows. I suddenly felt the class distance: those animals in coach drove this guy crazy, reliably narrated by a gentleman in first class.
The point isn’t who is more reliable, cameras or passengers; but rather how instinctively I reacted to the class divide– even against my own nature. We are the 98%, and we are too slow.
At no point should you ask if five hours on a runway is a kind of torture, especially in coach. NB: the air condition doesn’t run well if the plane’s not flying.
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