A Muslim man was told to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after another passenger overheard him speaking Arabic on his mobile phone.
Khairuldeen Makhzoomi, a 26-year-old Berkeley graduate, was removed from the plane at Los Angeles International Airport in April this year.
Once seated, he had made a brief call to his uncle in Baghdad, telling him how excited he was to ask a question to the UN secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, during a dinner the previous day.
Before hanging up, he said the Islamic phrase in Arabic of “inshallah”, meaning “God willing”.
He noticed a woman staring at him as he hung up the phone. He thought at first she had been irritated by how loud he was speaking.
“One guy came with police officers within two minutes — I can’t believe how fast they were — and told me to get off the plane,” he told CNN.
An agent escorted him outside and asked him why he was speaking in Arabic considering “today’s political climate“.
Southwest should have told the woman that people are free to speak any language on their planes that they wish and the mere use of Arabic doesn’t count as an act of terrorism. Furthermore, they should have reminded her that she uses Arabic every day, every time she writes a number.
America has degraded itself to the point of stupidity such as has never been seen in this country before. It’s time to say no to the fearmongering ignorance that sees even the use of an Arabic word as a threat. Stop it, you ignorant dullards. Stop it.
And Southwest, because you aided and abetted, I will never, ever fly with you. Ever.