She reclined her seat, he began punching it endlessly — who do YOU think the jerk is here?
A video of an American Airlines passenger punching the seat of the woman in front of him for reclining her seat has gone viral, and also has many people on the internet divided on who is actually in the wrong here.
Spoiler alert: it’s definitely him, no argument. Look, we all hate it when the person sitting in front of us reclines their seat. Fat people, tall people, and average-sized people — it doesn’t matter, we all hate it. Reclining your seat (if you have no reason to do so) goes against unspoken plane etiquette. But. BUT. Being uncomfortable does not warrant punching the seat of said recliner repeatedly like this guy did.
The video was shared on Twitter by journalist Marina Marraco, and quickly picked up steam from there.
This video has the internet legitimately divided .
Dude is in the last seat on the plane. Seat doesn’t recline.
Hers does. And she reclines.
He’s upset, and is punching her seat incessantly— so she records.
Who is right?!
Who is wrong?!
— Marina Marraco (@MarinaMarraco) February 12, 2020
Male violence is never an acceptable solution to anything, especially not against a woman who simply reclined her seat that, for all intents and purposes, has a reclining functionality!
And if it’s that much of an issue — this man’s seat was the last one in the back of the plane, and did not have a reclining option — what’s wrong with asking the woman if she wouldn’t mind putting her seat back to the upright position? We don’t know for sure what happened prior to this video being recorded, so maybe he did. Maybe she refused. Maybe he never asked. BUT STILL. This is not how you respond to another human being on a flight. Wonder if he’d try the same stunt if it were a man sitting in the seat in front of him?
Many Twitter users pointed that out (and other ways this is just plain wrong), and many others defended his actions.
What is wrong with you people? Reclining is impolite but punching someone’s seat over and over and over because you’re upset that they reckoned, as is actually their right? That is even more wrong. And threatening and mildly violent.
— roxane gay (@rgay) February 13, 2020
This tweet and it’s responses are filled with alot of white, alot of male, and alot of privilege.
— I weigh 237 lbs. (-10) (@Nils187) February 14, 2020
he isnt hitting the seat because she is reclining. he is hitting the seat because she is a woman. if thats a dude in front of him hes not gonna do a damn thing. hes a coward and a loser. he is wrong.
— m i t h (@ManlnTheHoody) February 13, 2020
The airlines are at fault for forcing human beings into these depraved Lord of the Flies type situations
— Jon Levine (@LevineJonathan) February 13, 2020
How is this even a question? She is clearly in the wrong, 1) for reclining, 2) not asking & not pulling forward when it was a clear problem, 3) for filming it, & 4) for sending it in to Bravo. (Granted, he could’ve handled it better).
— Tim Rege (@The_Rege) February 13, 2020
It’s rude to ever recline your seat. I angle my air conditioning vent on the back of their necks until they turn around to adjust it. I tell them I’ll turn it off for a raised seat. Always works.
— BridgeFaithful (@bridge_faithful) February 12, 2020
im 6’2” nobody is reclining over me. man woman or child.
just because your seat can break my legs doesnt mean im gonna let you
— Nenad (@devijantan) February 13, 2020
That video of the woman in a reclined seat on a plane and the man in the seat behind her punching her chair:
1. He’s a piece of shit
2. He’d never do that to a male passenger
3. Men are socialized into owning public space.
5. This is what happens when a woman owns it
— Mona Eltahawy (@monaeltahawy) February 13, 2020
The woman in the video, Wendi Williams, says she recorded the man punching her seat after she had asked him not to and tried to get the flight attendant to de-escalate the situation, to no avail.
“Here’s a great jackhole! He was angry that I reclined my seat and punched it about 9 times — HARD, at which point I began videoing him, and he resigned to this behavior,” Williams tweeted with a video of the man behind her hitting the back of her seat. Again, it’s not clear what happened before or after Williams started filming.
After much consideration, and exhausting every opportunity for #AmericanAirlines to do the right thing, I’ve decided to share my assault, from the passenger behind me, and the further threats, from an American Airline flight attendant. She offered him a complimentary cocktail!
— wendi (@steelersfanOG) February 8, 2020
Had I not recorded this, no one would’ve believed it! As far as speaking up for myself, he was crazy and so was the FA. He should be shamed! He knew he was being recorded and still acted that way, but you’re right, I’m sure we could’ve shared some tea and had a nice, calm chat. https://t.co/ZZHxQVvEXr
— wendi (@steelersfanOG) February 10, 2020
She may have inconvenienced his space, but he is HITTING HER. Relentlessly. In the enclosed space of an aircraft where there is no way for her to escape the situation.
If he wants to be mad at someone, perhaps get angry at the airlines and aircraft companies for designing these seating situations to resemble a pack of sardines. That’s the real issue here. American Airlines has yet to release a statement about the incident.