Kevin Smith was ejected from a Southwest Airlines flight over the weekend for being "too fat to fly." Now the plus-sized Clerks and Mallrat director has launched a very public, very profane verbal assault against Southwest on Twitter, saying he was humiliated and treated unfairly for being overweight.
(As you continue to read this post, keep in mind that Smith has a new film, Cop Out, opening on Feb. 26.)
Smith is irate because the airlines threw him off the plane after he was already seated. He tweeted:
"I know I'm fat, but was (the pilot) really justified in throwing me off a flight for which I was already seated?"
He argues that Southewest was wrong to make him leave because he had fastened his seat belt and, therefore, was not a safety risk. However, the airlines, though issuing an apology for the handling of the situation, maintains that Smith was ejected "for the safety and comfort of all customers" because he was unable to put down the armrest, thereby breaking a safety regulation.
Since then, Smith and his fans have launched a barrage of tweets relentlessly attacking Southwest for its discriminatory policies.
Although, I'm a Smith fan (most of the time), I'm having a difficult time siding with him on this one: If passengers are unable to comply with safety regulations (be they overweight or otherwise), they should be unable to fly. Right?
Do you think airlines should do more to accomodate overweight people? Or was Southwest justified in kicking Smith off the plane?
Or is the entire situation just a convenient publicity stunt?