American Airlines Wants Hate Crime Laws In All 50 States, LGBTQ Inclusion In Civil Rights Law

United Airlines is woke but American Airlines wants you to know that they aren’t just opposed to voting law changes that target people of color, they are “taking a stand..for LGBTQ rights and hate crimes legislation.


  • Is supporting the federal Equality Act to make LGBTQ a suspect classification for protection under federal law
  • Wants to see hate crimes laws in all 50 states, and is working towards this in South Carolina, Arkansas and Wyoming

“The rise in hate crimes against the Asian community are a reminder that bias crimes and racism are not limited to one race, ethnicity or sexual orientation. The necessary work required to combat targeted attacks requires all of us not just to watch with heavy hearts, but to also act with commitment,” said Cedric Rockamore, American’s Vice President, Diversity Equity and Inclusion. “At American, caring for people is not limited to one ethnicity or origin, one gender or age. We are tasked with caring for all people of all walks of life.”

American celebrated the Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges which legalized same sex marriage nationwide, a decision I applauded as well. So this isn’t new.

Some people, not unreasonably I think, feel that punishment should be based on the criminal action taken, without a sentencing enhancement due to the bias of the perpetrator. American rejects this view.

Recently American’s CEO Doug Parker reminded employees of the airline’s opposition to so-called ‘bathroom bills’ and noted that these are bad for business since they lead to boycotts and cancellation of events which reduce travel.

There are some brands which are, themselves, a social statement. American Airlines isn’t really one of them, people don’t choose American as a reflection of their beliefs. But we’ve reached a place where politics is as much or more about cultural identification than about policy, where politics at the intersection of bathrooms and sexual orientation is more controversial than priorities embedded in multibillion dollar pieces of legislation, and where there are few spaces in which these political issues don’t pervade.

Perhaps RouteHappy should begin offering rich political content to help people choose their airline itineraries?

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I am an openly gay man and I am just so tired of this woke nonsense. Please just fly your customers to point A to point B safely.

    A crime is a crime and the perpetrator if convicted is sentenced for the crime. Most hate crimes legislation seeks to criminalize thought or belief or idea

  2. As a minority, I find “hate crime” laws offensive and patronizing. Either we’re all equal or we’re not.

  3. If we needed a poster child for why overseas airlines should be allowed to fly domestic US routes, this is it. Just what would Akbar Al-Baker say about this??? 🙂

  4. We’re all equal. All persons – white, black, Asian, native, gay, straight, male, female, other categories – should be protected by hate crimes laws.

    A white man was viciously beaten and attacked on the basis of his being white. Hate crime laws were held constitutional by the Supreme Court in this case.

    Good for American. Proud to have bought a premium transcon ticket on them last week.

  5. LOL. What a joke. Isn’t AA still partners with Qatar Airways (from a country to where same sex couples are subject to arrest and imprisonment)?

    Doesn’t AA also partner with other airlines that are owned by governments where LBGTQ activity is subjected to capital punishment?

    Corporate fascism is over 120 years old at this point.

  6. If businesses are people (Citizens United) and businesses can contribute to candidates then they sure as hell can take a position in a debate about a citizens right to vote. If one party wants to make it more difficult to vote so as to retain control over the majority then don’t be surprised where this goes.

  7. Remember when the left wanted big business out of politics? Now that all of these companies are woke, they are expected to pontificate about all manner of different political and policy debates. It is not healthy for our republic and I hope that it is a passing fad.

  8. Interesting irony that the political right actually claimed to want business involved in politics until those businesses didn’t agree with them. Then they declared that they only wanted the money from those businesses. I’m no leftist or Democrat but until there is something close to parity in attacks and punishments, having hate crime laws benefits our society. As much as some people are trying to change this, hate is not an American value.

  9. seems from this small sample, most want them to keep out of politics, but i bet if we were fed the polls from the media, the vast majority would all be for so called bullsh1t “woke” companies aligning with one party.

  10. There was a an old saying – “you can want in one hand and s**t in the other then see which gets filled up first”

    This seems like virtue signaling and won’t have any impact. I guess after Delta stepped in it commenting on GA voting laws everyone else is stumbling all over themselves to see who is the most woke. Very sad!!

  11. For me, safety, FF programs, fares, and inflight service are all parts of the puzzle, but what a company stands for is a piece, too. I am more likely to fly American and Delta, because they are reflecting my values.

  12. ‘But we’ve reached a place where politics is as much or more about cultural identification than about policy, where politics at the intersection of bathrooms and sexual orientation is more controversial than priorities embedded in multibillion dollar pieces of legislation.’

    Did you pause and think that this is precisely because politicians don’t want you to focus on this and pass bills in obscurity while encouraging fighting about other unrelated things?

  13. The populist/republican movement in this country is less and less corporate friendly. Historically Republicans were the pro corporation party and democrats the pro worker/people party. Since repubs/populists are turning more and more against corporations and becoming more working class, and the elites/whites are becoming more democrat, the corporations are gonna have to find a new daddy. Guess its the democrats now and hence their “wokeness”.

  14. Well, for those of you who think airlines (and business) should stay out of politics, too late. The Supreme Court affirmed their right to free speech, and they hand over millions of dollars in donations every year.

    What you are hearing now ain’t “woke”, it’s doing what they’ve always done, just a little more transparently. It’s nice to see them demand something other than subsidies for a change.

  15. The people saying “stick to doing your business, Corporation X” are likely the same ones saying “stick to sports, Athlete Y”.

    Guess what – it’s not the mid-20th century anymore. Join the 21st whenever you’d like.

  16. @David

    Equality is a myth. It doesn’t exist in nature. Nothing is equal. A poodle is not equal to a Dalmatian. They have different genes and thus have different traits and characteristics. It’s ridiculous we can have preference for sports teams/ice cream/coke vs Pepsi/destinations but we can’t have preferences for things of substance like race/sex/sexual orientation. Equal treatment under a law is not the same thing as races or groups being equal. If entities are classified into distinct groups they can’t be equal by definition of the word.

    What’s dangerous here is American grouping free speech with a crime. For the record, George Washington fought cops and soldiers with violence to secure the right to free speech. People are entitled to make comments and show a preference for whatever race or sexual orientation they choose. Free speech doesn’t end just because feelings get hurt.

    All rational white people should oppose hate crime legislation because we know it will exclusively be used to persecute innocent whites who practiced self defense against thugs who intended to do them harm and be used to persecute whites who exercised their right to free speech. We hear stories of 3000 black on Asia attacks this year but we don’t hear that millions of whites every year are victims of black on white crime. Blacks are 13% of the population and commit 52% of the violent crimes. Blacks commit interracial rape at a ratio of 50,000 to 1. Whites aren’t allowed a voice/a caucus/to act in their interests/their own living space and countries. No one says China/Kenya/Saudi Arabia aren’t diverse enough. Diversity just means less whites. The media is not allowed to tell the truth to the public about what groups commit a disproportionate amount of crime. To dispel the myth of equality, races don’t commit crime at equal levels to their population.

    If white Americans started waking up and mobilized and used their numbers, the anti white hate and genocide being perpetrated through open borders/government intervention, and demographic replacement could be defeated. It’s unfortunate our political leaders are too cowardice to call a spade a spade.

  17. @Jackson Waterson – were you born a racist/white nationalist, or did you just evolve into one over time? Nature vs. nurture debate at its finest.

  18. Not only is it wrong for a corporation to try and take a stand on matters that have no nexus with their business, but it’s also outright bad business. If you as a corporation stay out of a controversial issue, you have alienated 0% of your potential customer base. If you take sides, you have alienated 49-51%. Sounds like bad business to me.

  19. More likely, @marco, they’re losing maybe 2% of their business (old racists who will actually follow through with actions instead of words), and cementing their progressive rep with 20-40 yr olds who will actually follow through with only giving their business to progressive companies.

    They’re looking towards the future instead of towards the old racist codgers.

  20. @Marco – Citizens United opened the floodgates, so of course they now want to have a voice.

    Most of these corporations, smartly, don’t want to be on the wrong side of history. Not speaking up against voter suppression and hate speech? Now that’s bad business.

  21. Wrong side of history? That’s pretty presumptuous and arrogant, these corporations are carefully trying to navigate pleasing their politicians they are beholden to (which control their regulators), their work groups, their shareholders and their customers, trying to piss off the least amount of people. Don’t fool yourself!

  22. @UA-NYC – So you think that players have a right to speak up about social issues. Ok, but then they need to be consistent and not hypocritical about it right?

    So have you/would you publicly call out athletes like LeBron who are very vocal on social matters, but straight up avoided the question about China censoring Morey and the NBA as hypocritical?

    Clearly supporting BLM as an NBA a TV let’s does not hurt his bottom line. Not toeing communist China’s line clearly does. So he’s vocal with one and not vocal with another.

    Let’s not pretend that people and organizations are not protecting their bottom line through their virtue signaling and “social activism” on many, many occasions.

    If individuals and corporations want to be taken seriously, then need to put their money where their mouths are and not act hypocritically. Simple as that. Then they would at least receive begrudging praise for their stances.

  23. Perpetrators of hate crimes should receive additional penalty; similarly, those engaging in the active support of hate organizations/activity should be sanctioned, eg the chicken sandwich people booted out of San Antonio Airport. American is to be applauded for this stand.

  24. @Ben

    UA-NYC is just going to call you a racist homophobe now for having a differing opinion. Your efforts to have a reasoned debate with them is pointless as they are just here to agitate.

  25. A crime is a crime and guilt or innocence should dictate whether a punishment is required. Mitigating factors, such as motive, can be considered during sentencing. But the concept of a “hate crime” is incredibly discriminatory. It says that some lives are more valuable than others. A black child murdered may be more valuable than my white child – but only if killed by a white person. If killed by a black person, meh.

    It’s crapola. And AA (and these other woke companies) need to STFU and worry about doing business. Since when did corporate boardrooms become so idiotically woke and misdirected?

  26. Doug Parker cannot even run an airline but he wants to be the poster boy for ESG accountability. What a loser he is. Fly airplanes, provide good service, and stay out of politics.

  27. so many homophobes on this site, disgusting and shameful….and the self hating homosexual on top is a toady disgrace. So much hate. But Gary you incite the racism and homophobia on this site. Wow, you cultivate racists and homophobes….you are just another hate blog. I trust you have earned a national boycott and here we go.

  28. Allen,

    Looks like you are the one consumed by hate! You are disgusting and shameful! Don’t let all that hate burn you up!

  29. And the “beat goes on.” American has morphed into some sort of “civil conscience” of what ever. Other than self ordination, who ever appointed them to this role? They can’t run their business without big brother government spoon feeding them. The only good news is, based on their miserable performance as an airline, their worthless executive managements will again fail in this ill gotten adventure. Next thing you know, they will be having protest rallies onboard their planes.

  30. @Dan777 – seems like you are pro-voter suppression and may be bummed about the Chauvin verdict today…sorry for your loss.

  31. Dougie only cares about White LGBTQ people (and maybe those of color in the US). Let’s see Dougie cut ties with foreign airlines owned by governments that criminalize LGBTQ lifestyles. If he doesn’t, he’s either a bigot or a shameless hypocrite.

    He want’s the praise of taking a “tough” stand that he knows will not cost him anything. Yeah, real courage there, Dougie. Put up or shut up. Start dropping international partners who criminalize their LGBTQ populations, or drop the fake virtue signaling. Or just acknowledge LGBTQ lives stop mattering the minute action hurts your bottom line.

  32. UA-NYC,

    You are so jaded you probably are incapable of contemplating that I condemn voter suppression and am happy with the Chauvin guilty verdict. It’s a shame you are so full of hate that you would push would be allies away like myself with your hyper partisanship.

  33. AA needs to stAAy out of political issues that are not directly related to the airline industry, aviation, travel and airports.

  34. Why is everything about politics?…Corporate organizations at one time were only concerned about delivering great service and how to increase their customer base..for profit….no one likes to be lectured as if they are a child or without intelligence or discernment. Dollars matter.

  35. When it’s bakeries not serving gays, and Hobby Lobby firing gays, Republicans are A-OK with business intermixing with politics.

    But NOW when the market speaks it’s “get business outta politics!”


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