A Jewish couple has accused a Spirit Airlines flight attendant of anti-Semitic behavior onboard a flight from New York to Florida. Spirit says the couple did not follow the rules.
Chana and Yisroel Beck were flying from Newark to Ft. Lauderdale earlier this week on Spirit Airlines with their 6-week-old, two-year-old, and three-year-old.
It started with a baby stroller, which was FAA-approved for in-cabin use and OKed by the gate agent. But upon boarding, Chana claims the FAs immediately stopped her.
There is no way this is coming on. I don’t care who approved it at the gate. I’m the boss here and I’m going to decide if it comes on or no.
Alrighty then. I (now) know better than to argue with FAs onboard, but the Beck’s gave it a try. They transformed the stroller into a seat and showed the FAs that it was intended for use in-flight.
Nope. It wasn’t coming on.
Per the New York Post, another passenger heard one FA complaining to another about “those retarded Jews” before the plane took off. He was so horrified he came forward and offered to vouch for the Becks if asked later.
But that wasn’t all. Once the flight took off, Yisroel moved up to his wife and two children. He was holding their two-year-old.
A FA ordered him back to his seat, noting that there were not five oxygen masks in that row. Yisroel returned, but did not like the way the FA spoke to him and asked for his last name. The FA, named José, answered by telling Yisorel to shut up.
Once the plane landed in Ft. Lauderdale, all passengers were asked to remain onboard. Two police officers and two Spirit supervisors boarded and escorted the family off. Apparently, the FAs had already written a report claiming the family did not follow instructions and were disruptive.
Chana claims one of the Spirit supervisors said their return ticket would be cancelled and they were banned from flying Spirit Airlines.
Spirit claims the Becks have not reached out to the airline yet. A spokesman did tell the Post:
Records indicate that this guest ignored flight and ground crew instructions multiple times, beginning with the boarding process and continuing through landing.
He also added:
Spirit Airlines does not tolerate any form of discrimination. We are extremely proud of the diversity of our team and strive to provide exceptional service to all of our Guests.
I’m not going to make any speculations about this, but I do not see why the eyewitness would make up a lie about what the FA said. Maybe the family did ignore crew instructions, maybe not. There are two sides. But nothing justifies insulting the family the way one FA did. There is no defense.
One footnote. I first saw this story on news.com.au with the following video:
Oh my goodness! What a hilarious video. At first I thought this was the female passenger above, since she is wearing a huge Star of David necklace, but this incident occurred several months earlier…