Public backlash in response to the recent events that took place on an overbooked United Airlines flight this Sunday has drawn such attention to the issue that officials in Washington are now feeling the need to give their view on the situation.
In case you’re currently uninformed on the events that took place in Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, witnesses reported that a passenger who refused to give up his seat on an overbooked flight was violently struck and dragged down the center isle of the aircraft by security.
According to the Washington Post, the sequence of traumatic events unraveled shortly after the airline supervisor had announced to on-board passengers: “We have United employees that need to fly to Louisville tonight. … This flight’s not leaving until four people get off.”
After a few minutes had passed and disgruntled comments filled the cabin, no progress had been made; causing security to step in and order people to leave the plane. The first couple who had been asked to leave exited the aircraft swiftly, but visibly annoyed, however, the next man who was ordered to leave refused. Eyewitness Tyler Bridges told reporters “[the man] says, ‘Nope. I’m not getting off the flight. I’m a doctor and have to see patients tomorrow morning.” Bridges continued: “The man became angry as the manager persisted, Bridges said, eventually yelling. “He said, more or less, ‘I’m being selected because I’m Chinese.’”
Shortly thereafter, one police officer boarded the plane, followed by a second, who was then followed by a third. At that point, passengers began recording the even, as it became more and more obvious something serious was about to occur.
Hours after details of the incident became available to the public, the America’s overwhelming response to the situation has now caused Congressional officials to share their viewpoint on the situation.
Senator Amy Klobuchar addressed the issue, stating in a tweet: “Travelers deserve to be treated w dignity. That’s why I fought for Passenger Bill of Rights. This is unacceptable.” Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Maryland) wanted to federally investigate the incident, stating in a tweet: “#United must do more than “apologize”. Full investigation needed. Airlines must start treating passengers with respect, not like cargo.”
White House press secretary Sean Spicer was even asked to comment on the situation, and was questioned about whether or not the federal government should get involved. Spicer responded: “There is plenty of law enforcement to review a situation like that… Let’s not get ahead of where that review goes.”
I, as much as anyone, hate to agree with Sean Spicer, but I have to side with him on this one. There are currently MUCH bigger things on America’s plate, primarily the situation going on in Syria, to the point where it’s silly for Washington to get involved in the United Airlines incident. Although the action taken by airport security was completely blasphemous, our politicians need to get their priorities straight and address our foreign conflicts, considering we are on the brink of a third World War. Not to say the United Airlines incident shouldn’t be dressed, because it absolutely should be, Washington should be involving their time and effort elsewhere and lesser authorities handle the situation.