There are fewer things scarier than when entitled and mean people have money. If you're in a business establishment with them and they're spending more than you, it puts the owner of said establishment in a prickly situation once they start giving other customers a hard time.
Do they risk losing money by speaking up against them? Or do they try to quell matters quietly and not really threaten their big spender?
But what if that same big spender was sexually harassing another customer? That's exactly what happened to Randi Zuckerberg when she was seated next to a man on an Alaska Air flight.
Zuckerberg, sister of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and creator of Facebook Live, public speaker, Sirius XM radio host, TV producer, and all-around successful and influential woman, was stuck seated next to a man who wouldn't stop making lewd comments to her and other women on the plane.
From "rating" the women walking on board, to asking Zuckerberg if she had sexual thoughts or if she touched herself, to commenting on the Harvey Weinstein scandal and chalking the outrage up to Millennial women not knowing how to give themselves up sexually for a job, this creep allegedly did it all.
And the worst part? Alaska Airlines staff reportedly chalked his behavior up as him having "no filter." They offered to ameliorate the situation by giving Zuckerberg the opportunity to move her seat to the back of the plane, which is about as great as it sounds.
Zuckerberg wrote to Alaska Air to notify them of her treatment on the aircraft. She also posted her letter on Twitter.
Feeling disgusted & degraded after an @AlaskaAir flight where the passenger next to me made repeated lewd sexual remarks. The flight attendants told me he was a frequent flier, brushed off his behavior & kept giving him drinks. I guess his $ means more than our safety? My letter: pic.twitter.com/xOkDpb0dYU— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) November 30, 2017
Turns out that sexual harassment on airplanes, and staff not doing much to stop it, isn't an uncommon phenomenon, unfortunately.
also that 'move to a middle seat in the back' thing is a pure threat. they could have asked a man in 1st or business to trade seats. or even a window seat. NO ONE would have been upset about that move. or moved the guy. they wanted to make it clear that you were being punished— sarah kunst (@sarahkunst) November 30, 2017
Others pointed out that because of Zuckerberg's influence, she'll have her voice heard, but there are tons of women who aren't in the same position.
Imagine all of the women flying who don’t have the same platform to be heard or affirmed.— Kimberly Kay Hoang (@kimberlykhoang) November 30, 2017
Yes that is why, even though I was embarrassed and humiliated beyond words to post this, I felt it was necessary to highlight— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) November 30, 2017
There's also the obvious fact that Alaska Airlines likely had no idea who they were dealing with when they wrote off Zuckerberg's valid concerns.
As I just tweeted, you could BUY the freaking airline! If they couldn't manage to respect you over some drunk guy,I Idon't know there's much hope.— Arngrim (@Arngrim) November 30, 2017
While others highlighted that flight attendants may have been trained, consciously or not, to just accept this type of behavior from men.
What's infuriating is that as women (ex: the flight attendants) we're programmed to grin & bear it, giggle it off & make excuses for men who don't know how to behave. It's seared into our brains after decades of making up for other's poor behavior. TY for screaming IT'S NOT OK!👿— Elizabeth Galbut (@design4innov8) November 30, 2017
I'm sure these same flight attendants have been sexually harassed by this passenger & many others their entire careers. And their training, rather than empowering them in these situations, systematically keeps them grinning, demure & accommodating of vile behavior.— Elizabeth Galbut (@design4innov8) November 30, 2017
Alaska Airlines responded to Zuckerberg's tweet and asked her to DM them further details about the incident.
What you have shared with us is very disturbing. We have launched an investigation and have revoked this passenger's travel privileges pending the outcome of that investigation. We wish to discuss this further with you. Please DM us so we can connect tonight.— Alaska Airlines (@AlaskaAir) November 30, 2017
In an update, she wrote, "While it should never have happened in the first place, I am thankful that they are taking the situation seriously."