Does a company have the right to let their employees decide what is acceptable? In this latest incident American Airlines offered an apology to a customer who was almost removed from a flight simply for wearing a shirt that said “Hail Satan”.
In October, the passenger Swati Runi Goyal was traveling from Miami to Las Vegas, when she was brought to the front of the plane by airline attendants. They asked her to remove the “Hail Satan” shirt or she would not be able to take her flight.
On Goyal’s twitter she posted:
"On Oct 30th, when flying @americanair from Miami to Las Vegas, I was asked to deplane or change my shirt. The crew humiliated me in public." Using the hashtags #ACLU, #NotSoFriendlySkies, #Discrimination and #ReligiousFreedom.
The shirt in question is a plain black shirt with lettering, with no offensive imagery or wording on it. But, the flight attendant felt that it offended her christian sensibilities, and wanted the passenger off the plane, or to remove the shirt. This is a clear example of religious discrimination. Satanism is a legally recognized religion in America.
American airlines reached out to her on Twitter for an apology, claiming that “Discrimination has no place at American Airlines” . However, the airline isn’t exactly clear as to what it classifies as “offensive clothing”.
Goyal is a member of the Satanic Temple, where she had purchased her Hail Satan shirt from their gift shop.
Later on, in a statement from Lucien Greaves at the Cut: “It simply is not the place of an airline crew, or anybody operating any type of public accommodation, to pass judgment upon the beliefs of a passenger or customer, or to deny service based upon assumptions related to religious identity or opinion, in any circumstances…American Airlines owes more than an apology, they owe the public an explanation.”
We live in a day and age in America where Christian privilege is still alive. But when people like her stand up for their rights, and raise awareness, we can create a world where Satanism is just as accepted as any other religion.
American Airlines apologizes after forcing passenger to change ‘Hail Satan’ shirt – By Anika Reed, USA TODAY Dec 12, 2019 accessed 12/16/19
Woman Wearing ‘Hail Satan’ Shirt Ordered to Get Off Plane – By Amanda Arnold, The Cut Dec 6th, 2019 accessed 12/16/19