Activist and #BlackLivesMatter supporter Imani Cezanne says she was wrongfully kicked off a plane because of her t-shirt. Last weekend, Cezanne was on a American Airlines flight leaving Charlotte heading to Atlanta wearing a t-shirt that bore the names of black men slain by police when a flight attendant says she felt “threatened” and Cezanne was asked to exit the plane.
Cezanne claims while talking with the passenger next to her the flight attendant asked her ‘is she going to be a problem.’ Cezanne says she asked the attendant the same thing and inquired on why she felt the need to ask her that. Shortly afterwards, the police were called and Imani was essentially escorted off the aircraft by two white male officers and was subsequently banned from flying on American Airlines. Earlier this week, Cezanne took to Twitter to detail her experience.
Long story short, Cezanne believes that she’s a victim of #FlyingWhileBlack. American Airlines released a statement denying her claims and calling Imani an unruly passenger who didn’t follow directions. In an emailed statement sent to JET, American Airlines stated:
An unruly passenger was removed from American Eagle Flight 5192, operated by PSA Airlines, from CLT to ATL due to failure to comply with crew member instructions. The passenger refused to exit aircraft when asked, so local law enforcement was called.
The airline has plans to “work with the customer to resolve the issue.” The company also said it “values diversity and we do not discriminate for any reason.”