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?