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A passenger on board an American Airlines flight to Washington D.C. says a flight attendant called the cops on her for “flying while fat and Black”, according to Vice.

Amber Phillips, 28, writer and co-host of the of Black Joy Mixtape says that during a 30-minute flight an attendant called the cops on her because a white woman sitting next to her felt uncomfortable.

What started as a verbal argument turned on a flight from North Carolina to Washington D.C. turned into Phillips being questioned by cops on the tarmac after the flight lands. Phillips says that there was an immediate sense of tension between her and the woman in the two chair row.

“I thought, ‘I really hope this woman isn’t mean to me… because I’m fat and black,” explained Phillips. “Because of the intersections of my identity, a black woman who takes up space, this is what my life could look like just because I dare to exist.”

Soon after getting onto the flight, they began arguing because the white woman did not want to be in contact with her.

“She kept being very aggressive and finally goes, ‘Can you move over?’” explained Phillips. She felt embarrassed by the whole situation because she was unable to move anywhere.

“So the plane takes off and I’m so sad,” Phillips said. “I have my hands folded in my lap. I just kept thinking, this is how fat people are treated on planes. Period.”

Upon landing, Phillips snapped a picture of the seats for documentation of the seat size. Taking the picture made the woman sharing the row with her uncomfortable and cause her to complain to the flight attendant about being harassed by Phillips.

Having already got off the plane and onto a shuttle bus, the flight attendant asked her to get off. “I asked why, and she said, ‘I’m calling security, I’m calling the cops and this bus isn’t moving,’” explained Phillips.

When she got off, she spoke with an officer who had previously spoken with the woman sitting next to her. The officer asked for her ID and explained to her that he was looking at the incident as an assault. He never asked for a statement from her according to Phillips.

“So I stepped back and made sure my hands are visible,” explained Phillips. After confirming that she wasn’t going to be arrested she left the tarmac and went home.

In a statement sent to Vice, American Airlines stated, “Upon landing in DCA shortly after 8 p.m. ET, one of the passengers requested to be escorted off the aircraft due to the altercation continuing.” It continues, “The Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority Police Department was called to assist and removed both passengers. We take claims of discrimination very seriously and are continuing to investigate the details of this situation. We have reached out directly to the customers for more information.”

The Washington Police Department explained that both women cooperated with officers on the scene and that they didn’t find a threat and no arrest were made.

Even with that statement, Phillips who regularly uses American Airlines says she will no longer be flying with them.

“Everyone just participated in policing me,” Phillips said. “The CEO… needs to make sure this isn’t happening. These are decisions made by people. (American Airlines) aided in all of this. I want my money back, my flyer miles back, I’m so tired.”

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(Source: Vice)

(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)

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25 thoughts on “Woman Says American Airlines Called Cops On Her For ‘Flying While Fat And Black’

  1. Candy on said:

    OK but WHO gets on a plane and thinks “I hope nobody gets mad at me because I’m fat and I’m black?” that just sounds ridiculous!!!! I’m sure she left out the part where she was talking shit to the lady that’s why the cops were called. She has 2 issues, one of them she can’t do anything about, but the second is well within her control. Stop being fat if you feel it is a problem for you when you travel

  2. Cathy E Mitchell on said:

    Well maybe this is a sign that she needs to become a little bit healthier. When I fly I do NOT want someone’s roll of fat on me either. White or Black. Matter of fact, I don’t care what your race is. As a Black woman, I’ve been crushed, squeezed terribly by some who are just too doggone big for those airline seats. It’s very uncomfortable sitting next to someone who’s big rolled arms are squishing into you, let alone their large shoulders causing you to lose control of your normal breathing. I don’t know who this woman is but maybe it’s time she see a nutritionist and start thinking about getting healthy. Stop using the race card. Fat and black my butt!!!!!

  3. Teresa on said:

    This makes no sense at all. Why can they just make a few seats to accommodate people over a certain size. They should not have to pay more money.

    • jhuf on said:

      Airlines already do make larger seats it’s called first class and if you had some bigger seats at no extra cost then EVERY passenger would want them, and since this is America if you want to drive a Benz you have to pay Benz prices

  4. Mac Ben on said:

    Whitey paid for her seat and should not have to deal with someone elses meat spilling over into hers. Further the cops were called because of the arguing not for being black or fat.

    • DK Wilson on said:

      Hold on there, Mac Ben. Whitey got offended because her precious pale arm was forced to be on contact with a dark-skinned arm. Now, I’m sure you – well, maybe you haven’t – flown on a plane. The seats are not accommodating for ANY passenger, other than children. People are wedged into planes like they are busses. The pale woman instigated the argument and, when her photo was taken had the unmitigated gall to claim SHE was being harassed! THAT is the definition of “white fragility” combined with an unrealistic feeling of privilege.

  5. Mac Ben on said:

    Whitey paid for her seat and should not have to deal with someone elses meat spilling over into hers. Further the cops were called because of the arguing not for being black or fat.

  6. Rhonda Jeffers on said:

    I only fly Amerian because they purchased US Air – I ate this airline! Going to have to start shopping elsewhere!

    Come on black folks it’s only going to continue to get worse. Use the little power you have to make change – if nothing else your econominc power! And stop shopping at thsoe Asian shops while you are at it!

  7. Tiana Nonbasic on said:

    I’ve been set next to skinny people on planes and they were to close and touching me but it did not require me to call a flight attendant or the POLICE?? Come on now this “You’re to close on a PLANE WITH SMALL SITTING” is RIDICULOUS And the cops being called was going TOO FAR. I do not know if it was race but 9 out of 10 white people are racist and 1 out of 10 white people don’t have Black friends. So, you do the math.

  8. Niecee on said:

    The airlines have a monopoly. The costs increase, the services decrease along with the seat size. I agree, you shouldn’t have to share your seat with someone else’s spillage, but why the extra drama. Something needs to be done about the room on planes. The want you to pay extra for everything while being uncomfortable

  9. My issue with the story is that they treated her as a criminal. It’s not a crime to be overweight. I am not overweight but I find it horrible that people are on here not looking at the true issue. All they had to do was say that she needed to buy another seat. That is the policy for most airlines. Why the cops? That is the racism part. So wake up my fellow black people and realize that sometimes it’s the extreme way that we are treated that’s the racism. I bet if she was white and overweight they would’ve told her to buy another seat and would’ve said it without all of the commotion.

  10. jhuf on said:

    Sounds like an incentive to lead a more healthier life style, maybe she should have jogged to D.C…… Sorry but I am sick to death of my fellow AA’s playing the race card every time something doesn’t go our way I’ve seen countless videos of fat white people
    being denied boarding and even being taken off the plane and required to buy two seats

    • Tiana Nonbasic on said:

      9 out of 10 White people are condescending, bias and racist. 1 out of 10 white people has black friends.

  11. Ted Gravely on said:

    I think obese people should buy two seats. If the airlines can put that stupid display up for carryon bags, then why can’t they put up a display when two seats are required. I’m kind, but if I’m on a flight and you have spillage into my space, I’m taking pictures and getting compensated. I’m not nasty about it – I’m just as frustrated as the person who refuses to acknowledge that they have inconvenienced me. I don’t want to go skin to skin with a hairy sweaty anybody. I don’t know why she felt like crying, can you imagine how the other person felt? This isn’t a race problem (stupid white lady asked for the police), this is an airline enforcement problem. Take a picture and write to them like I do.

  12. Airplanes are not known to have spacious seating and these days it seems as if the airline companies have taken to packing folks in like cans of sardines.

    I have had the misfortune of sitting next to an obese person on a plane.
    It was a big far white guy. He knew his ass was fat, however, there was no drama.
    I could not wait to exit from the plane-to finally get enuff oxygen.

    This story is what it is–that white b–ch simply DID NOT WANT TO SIT NEXT TO
    A FAT BLACK WOMAN!!!!!!!!!!

    • MariAnne Bolton on said:

      TO “L”: You R correct. In this world of: REQUEST-As-Much-Money-As-U-Possibly-Can-While-RENDERING-As-Little-GOODS & SERVICES-As-You-Can-Get-Away….these AIRLINES couldn’t give a “Happy F” as to How UNCOMFORTABLE the customers are……just so they GET THAT MONEY!!! The seats are all built so small and UNCOMFORTABLE, Bc their objective is to crowd as many people on each Plane as they possible can to MAKE-AS-MUCH-MONEY-AS-THEY-CAN……What A World!

  13. African American Woman on said:

    LMAO, lol, Bol and all other kinds of laughter! These discrimination typrs are getting funnier by the day, LMAO…..FAT and black? I dont care what color you are; if I’m flying and pieces of your fat body are on me, I’m gonna tell you about it!

  14. Her perception of this story is ridiculous.“Everyone just participated in policing me” –Really?! Amber is the one calling herself “fat and black.” It’s one thing if her arms were over the seat touching the woman because she was “not skinny,” shall we say, but nothing in this article concluded that there was a problem because she is black. I know…racism could have been a
    factor as well, but her take on it seems overly dramatic. I’m familiar with Amber’s ideas about black men, etc., and I would say in general that her interpretations and perceptions of reality are a bit out of sync, so this story as well fits the usual for her.

  15. americanize on said:

    Ha Ha this is funny and this black woman Anber Phillips she go’s around talking very negatively about black men.Well you got ur ni**a wake up call.

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