UPDATE ON THE AMERICAN AIRLINES INCIDENT:
the airline's straights-only security rules don't fly
I have now heard from our friend David Leisner, who was quoted in the The New Yorker story I wrote about on Thursday evening. David was one half of the couple which witnessed the threats delivered to two other passengers seated in front of them, a homosexual couple, by (successively) the flight attendent, the purser and the captain of an American Airlines flight en route from Paris to New York. Both he and his partner Ralph Jackson were quoted in the magazine, but David has added some perspective and one damning fact which makes the airline's confrontation even more outrageous than initially reported.
David writes, in part:
You can assure anyone that questions the degree of affection these guys were showing that it was very innocent - hand-holding, resting one's head on the other's shoulder and repeated kissing (but not French kissing!). Nothing disturbing about it at all, unless it had been a straight couple :-).
Also, the New Yorker writer got the punchline wrong: what the captain said to one of the couple was that he would divert the plane not if the arguing continued, but if he heard any more reports of such behavior (kissing). [my italics - JAW] It made an increasingly weird situation even more surreal and disturbing.
[image from pedalcarzone]