On October 18, passenger David Lawrence captured video of a heated conflict onboard RyanAir flight FR9015 from Barcelona to London. The video shows another passenger who is irate because he was sat next to an elderly black woman. The man becomes more and more incensed, shouting racial epithets and causing a scene. When RyanAir staff intervened, they asked the woman if she would move, instead of removing the blatantly racist man.
This racist white man refused to sit next to an elderly black woman on a Ryanair flight. He called her an "ugly b… https://t.co/7Lp1z3tyOW— StanceGrounded (@StanceGrounded)1540066914.0
As passengers tried to calm the situation and a relative of the black pensioner implored the man to "give her a chance," the man called the woman an "ugly black b*****d" and shouted at her:
Don't talk to me in a foreign language, you stupid ugly cow!
He should have been removed from the flight and handed over to the police. We assume the aircraft was in the UK. If… https://t.co/1jQDvYahV9— Karl Turner MP (@Karl Turner MP)1540080119.0
The man even went so far as to threaten the woman, saying:
I'll tell you this. If you don't go to another seat, I'll put you into another seat.
This really is appalling @Ryanair . You will know the identity of the man and the level of training given to your s… https://t.co/seWC4eAZUx— Stuart McMillan MSP (@Stuart McMillan MSP)1540080918.0
After those words, the woman, who was later identified as "Mrs Gayle, a 77 year-old pensioner from London" whose husband has recently passed away, asked to be relocated.
RyanAir is facing harsh criticism over their handling of the incident—they essentially gave the racist man exactly what he wanted at the expense of the innocent woman's seat.
@AamerAnwar @Ryanair Where are all these racists morons coming from? It’s like they’ve appeared from a hole in the… https://t.co/etxe7gBPc8— James Dornan SNP (@James Dornan SNP)1540077533.0
Just watched the shocking footage on a @Ryanair aircraft, utterly disgusting. Racist male passenger should have bee… https://t.co/pmgssdmUN4— Margaret Ferrier SNP (@Margaret Ferrier SNP)1540065405.0
RyanAir offered this statement when asked for comment by Indy 100:
We have reported this to the police in Essex and as this is now a police matter, we cannot comment further.
That was far from enough for Twitter.
If you were on that Ryan Air flight and heard the abuse directed at the woman would you have challenged the man who was shouting at her?— Dan Walker (@Dan Walker)1540186924.0
@SarahHemm @Ryanair A clearer picture of the racist offender. https://t.co/Ml5cGL5OgJ— Fiona (@Fiona)1540110826.0
Horrific. Just horrific. And shame on you @Ryanair for moving her not him. Should have thrown him off the plane. https://t.co/YpWIIr5eEc— Sarah Hemming (@Sarah Hemming)1540107141.0
@cnni It is a moral and social obligation in the interest of it's passengers to ensure that the all travel safely.… https://t.co/yajoc1oJjn— Collin (@Collin)1540199168.0
@jessbrammar @Nadine_Writes How appalling that @Ryanair can't even be bothered to pick up a telephone or even visit… https://t.co/vbbw3cvi2s— hussein al-alak (@hussein al-alak)1540202098.0
Many are calling for a boycott of RyanAir to protest their inaction.
@SkyNews People chose to be racist, no one is forced to act that way. Failure by the flight crew to not have acted… https://t.co/p08bX4dTrn— Mackie Veli (@Mackie Veli)1540191001.0
Though RyanAir reported the incident to local police, no consequences have yet to befall the racist man in the video. Despite his outpouring of hatred and refusal to respect any rules, he was given exactly what he wanted, and allowed to stay in his seat while the innocent people around him were inconvenienced for no reason. Perhaps European customers should take this into account when booking their flights for the future.