Southwest Airlines Pilot Insults Joe Biden, Announces “Let’s Go Brandon”

The Republican code-meme for ‘screw the President’ has recently become “Let’s Go Brandon!” It started October 2 at Talladega Speedway when NASCAR driver Brandon Brown. When he won, and was being interviewed by a reporter from NBC, the crowd was chanting behind him “F- Joe Biden.” The reporter thought they were saying, “Let’s Go Brandon!”

And so “Let’s Go Brandon” has taken on the meaning that the NASCAR crowd intended, and has been used by Florida Representative in a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives, South Carolina Represenative Jeff Duncan wore a “Let’s Go Brandon’ mask at the Capitol. And it’s been retweeted by Mitch McConnell’s press secretary.

Now that it’s become a thing, a Southwest Airlines pilot made “Let’s Go Brandon” the end of his welcome on board announcement on a Friday morning flight from Houston to Albuquerque. Some passengers reacted with “audible gasps.”

According to Southwest Airlines,

[Southwest] takes pride in providing a welcoming, comfortable, and respectful environment” and…“behavior from any individual that is divisive or offensive is not condoned.

An Associated Press reported happened to be on the flight, and almost got kicked off the aircraft seeking comment from the pilot about the announcement. She happened to be working on a story about the “Let’s Go Brandon” meme and points out that former President Trump, who will merchandise anything from vodka to steaks, now sells,

a $45 T-shirt featuring “Let’s go Brandon” above an American flag. One message to supporters reads, “#FJB or LET’S GO BRANDON? Either way, President Trump wants YOU to have our ICONIC new shirt.”

By the way a passenger recently had American Airlines page “Let’s Go Brandon.”

Five years ago a United Airlines pilot announced that everyone had to keep politics off the plane. Passengers cheered. No matter your feelings about silly memes or the President of the United States, there are some places where we should be left alone. Stuck in a metal tube, you can’t escape a pilot’s politics.

(HT: @crucker)

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. “The reporter thought they were saying, “Let’s Go Brandon!””

    No. No she didn’t think that at all. Watch again.

    1/2 the humor in this is that it perfectly encapsulates the media’s complete dedication to tell us not to believe our own eyes and ears whenever it contradicts their narrative.

    Trump sucked and all, but the people who hate them should be ashamed of what he turned them into and how they reacted to him. They’re too busy hating him to look in the mirror.

  2. Hadn’t heard about this “let’s go Brandon” thing until now. I have to admit it’s kind of funny (in a silly way, for sure, but I find it amusing)

  3. lol whiny little snowflakes. Don’t tell them to stop saying “let’s go Brandon” just give them another reason to live in a perpetual state of victimhood.

  4. Another idiot pilot that can’t concentrate on his job and finds being an ignorant punk is worth his job. And now we should support unions? The employees make it impossible. Just do your job.

  5. I remember the days when flying was a pure moment of peace. No emails, calls, or ability to know anything but the blue sky outside. Now we have this, and fights, and crazies, and alcohol induced nonsense, and and and…the list goes on.

    Driving is looking better and better all the time. If I could just figure out how to get to Europe and Asia via the mythic Northern Highway in my SUV.

  6. A few thoughts….
    @ Andy – Absolutely. That’s a big part of the entertainment value and appeal of it.

    Regarding the pilot. In the “Thing 1” universe, companies would have formal policies to keep politics out of the workplace and the pilot would be officially chastised and warned. But in the real world, airlines have already opened the door (and in fact embraced) the introduction of politics into the flying experience. Trying to put the toothpaste back in the tube is always problematic — particularly when we all know they’ll only want to put half of the toothpaste back in the tube.

  7. I’m a crazy liberal and I get that it’s supposed to upset me, but it just doesn’t. I can’t help but laugh at the absurdity of normalizing telling the president to go F himself. I’m sure Thanksgiving dinner at this pilot’s house will be a lot of fun.

  8. The whole “Let’s Go Brandon” thing actually would be pretty clever – in elementary school. For anyone even pretending to be capable of adulting it’s just pathetic. What’s next, opposites day?

  9. Employers force liberal agendas on their employees, but gold forbid someone have a little fun with LGB.

  10. I guess I don’t keep up with people on the fringes of nasty partisan politics do. Never heard of this. As a registered Independent I think both parties are a disgrace right now. In any case, I do want pilots to be focused on their job instead of politics, at least while they are on board an aircraft.

  11. @joey How was the pilot being a whiny snowflake? He wasn’t whining at all. Please stop trying to make people you disagree with look like snowflakes. Call out someone who truly is whining and calling themselves a victim a snowflake.

    I also don’t agree that the pilot should be able to say that and I don’t think it’s helpful to say F the president (whether Biden or Trump in the past).

  12. Unfortunately, this doesn’t surprise me. An AA pilot once wrote “MAGA” in the comments part of my 3 year old’s Junior Aviator book. A 3 year old they had just met in the cockpit, with parents who didn’t happen to be wearing certain red hats or any other political statements.

  13. I hope they fire that pilot. We don’t need unvaccinated scum like that on a plane potentially killing children (because you know he must be unvaccinated). Finally, a use for the
    FEMA “camps.” Let’s round up these
    domestic terrorists!

  14. “AP Reporter”….also more accurately referred to as a public assistance-collecting, purple-haired, socialist, journalism dropout “frerlancer”. An all-around loser who has disappointed her parents because they spent a bunch of money for her to amount to nothing.
    She should have become an AA flight attendant.

  15. @ Gary — And people wonder why America is so hated. People like @CHRIS are so childish and incapable of making an intelligent statement, it is sad. The behavior reminds me of their moron leader.

  16. I feel sorry for Brandon Brown, the actual Brandon. He didn’t ask to become a meme.

    Everyone urging destruction of another’s career for one offensive phrase or tweet should look in the mirror. Watch the movie Lives of Others. That’s not the kind of country I want to live in.

  17. The most hilarious thing about this post is….tRumpf is now a tshort salesman. Great job for a 1 term only prez

  18. Everyone wants to live in a country where children are taught, and adults encouraged, to use vulgarities to show visceral disdain for any and all people around them who happen to disagree with them? What a country! Not that we all have a choice about that.

  19. Way to force your politics on people that just want to get from point A to point B and on your company. Bet the pilot thinks ‘the left’ are the ‘socialist tyrants’ too.

    The right is out of control with insanity (been for years).

  20. @CHRIS — Haven’t heard that one since third grade. Thanks for confirming my earlier comment.

  21. Eff the president. More wonderful behavior from the party of Christianity and Leave it to Beaver white bread nonsense. Go cry your baby tears with your orange king you pathetic hillbilly losers.

  22. I think the Southworst pilot should have kept it shut, but…..when you have a media that is so obviously slanted left (it’s as bad in the UK and Europe) I can understand that people who have opposing views feel frustrated and well… things get said. If we truly had a broadcast and print media that broadly represented all facts and views such things would be less likely to happen.
    And @Gary, c’mon. There’s no way that silly cow mis-heard the crowd chant. All she’s achieved is to make herself a laughing stock.
    And speaking of laughing stocks…. were we not to have a drooling idiot for a President who can’t string a sentence together by himself….. God knows, poor Dr.Jill probably has to dress him too. As perfectly stated by Sky News Australia: “Joe Biden ‘needs a nursing home and a bowl of soup”
    That’s why we have “Let’s Go Brandon” and Southworst pilots who’ll puke it out on the public address system

  23. Incredibly unprofessional. I noticed it was the FO that made the PA? Whole thing is weird and makes me wonder how focused are these pilots on their actual job: Flying the jet.

  24. According to an actual passenger on this flight, there was a kid flying for an organ transplant named Brandon and the flight deck knew. So consider that.

  25. How about you keep YOUR politics out of the conversation. You love to hate on 45 but now that it’s saying something upsetting to your guy it’s now time to keep it out of the air.

    #LGB 🙂

  26. @Jorge Paez – You do realize vaccinated people such as myself can catch and spread covid, right? It is amazing how dump people are when they think it is only “unvaccinated scum” spreading the virus. Have you ever wondered why the CDC doesn’t share the data for how many vaccinated vs. unvaccinated are testing positive each day? They want people to think it is only unvaccinated testing positive but the reality is much different.

  27. That pilot should be shamed and doxxed. He kicks off passengers — even autistic two year old children — for not wearing masks (as Southwest pilots have repeatedly done), yet has the audacity to cry about Joe Biden?

    If that pilot truly hates Joe Biden (which is odd since he’s doing the job of enforcing Biden’s mask mandate), then why doesn’t he remove Joe Biden from office himself? Scared?

  28. Let’s go Brandon divisive? Fire someone for this? Please. America is sounding more like China EVERY DAY! Cancel “cancel culture!”
    Enough with corporations getting political. Just fly me from point A to Point B. Respect the people that work for you and patronize you.

  29. The only thing I would want to hear from Southwest about this is that the pilot has been terminated. I don’t trust the judgement of a pilot who thinks something like this is remotely appropriate.

  30. Sounds like someone might be out of their pilot job soon and on the unemployment line. And in this case, it’ll be his fault and can’t blame the employer for setting him up for wrongful termination. If he had only kept his mouth quiet and did his job and left politics out of his pilot job at Southwest Airlines, he wouldnt’ve gotten the negative press attention he did today.

  31. 1. America has freedom of speech (except for something like screaming fire in a crowded theatre when there isn’t one).
    2. Anyone “triggered” by LGB can spend their money on another carrier.

    LGB is a lot better than the real phrase lol I would have been nervous that the pilot was having a mental breakdown had he actually used the real one.

  32. Have we found a more vicious totalitarian progressive in Jorge Paez than we have in UA-CCP?

    The UK government recently released data showing that infection rates for those aged 40-79 are higher among the vaccinated than those who are not (see page 14). But those damned unvaccinated folx are literal murderers!

  33. The liberal double standard: Comedian with bloody severed head of President Trump is free speech. Rapper portraying shooting pistol at President Trumps head is free speech, a play portraying assassination of Trump is free speech. Pilot chants F Joe Biden and liberals cry “FIRE HIM!”

  34. @ cargocult — Thanks for the info. This is very interesting data. However, personally, I am primarily concerned about death, and clearly vaccines provide strong protection against death.

    Your ‘totalitarian” comment is completely out of touch with reality. Biden wants to help save lives, while Trump wants to shred the US Constitution and become a dictator. Which do you think will result in a better long-term outcome for the US and the world? Caring about others or caring only about one’s self?

  35. #FJB
    #Let’s Go Brandon

    That said and done, even with my political leanings, my intense dislike of anything left of center…

    I probably wouldn’t have said that unless that was my last flight before retirement. Kind of like a cops who has his/her last sign off who makes a statement.

    The airlines brought politics into this a long time ago. If an airline [any one of them] didn’t want politics involved in their front line employees, they should have stopped it at the Sr. Mgt and in the name of the company a very long time ago.

    As someone stated, the toothpaste is out of the tube already. Not much you can do about it

  36. Potato Joe needs to be insulted.
    As Barry once said “Joe can F*ck things up”.
    I laugh as his term drives America into the toilet further than it’s ever been.

  37. With conservatives its always the EXACT same disingenuous bullshit.

    “Keep politics out of ____” really just means “I don’t want to hear ANY liberal politics ever and if I do I will have a tantrum.”

    But the SECOND they can bring up politics in a cowardly disingenuous way? Count them the fuck in.

  38. So many comments
    Also those Southwest pilots will be gone in a few weeks
    They probably aren’t vaxxed and will be let go soon

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