A viral video showing an Arabic man's removal from a Delta flight has inspired a "Boycott Delta" movement to proliferate online. The situation has become more complicated upon discovering that said man is a YouTube star with a penchant for making prank-style videos onboard airplanes.
"#BoycottDelta" is currently a top trending topic, due to a viral video shared early this morning showing a pair of men getting removed from a Delta Air Lines flight. In the video, the man alleges that he and his friend are getting kicked off of the flight for simply speaking to one another in Arabic. "Guys, we spoke a different language on the plane, and now we're getting kicked out," he says, visibly distraught about what's happening.
The man speaking in the video, Adam Saleh, happens to be a YouTube personality with sizable followings on social media. Saleh has posted a handful of "prank" videos of himself -- and some with the same friend from the latest viral clip -- on airplanes, and he seems to be interested in making fellow passengers uncomfortable due to his Arabic ethnicity.
"Guys, we spoke a different language on the plane, and now we're getting kicked out," he exclaims in the new video.
Some of the other passengers appear to be upset about the apparent profiling of Saleh and his friend, while others can be seen waving them goodbye as they are escorted out. At one point, Saleh shouts in the direction of those who appear to be pleased about him leaving the plane. "I spoke a word, a different language, and you said you feel uncomfortable?" he asks angrily.
Saleh then mentions that the conflict that perhaps led to his removal involved "six white people against us bearded men." He claims that at least one of these men told him to "shut the f*ck up."
As the company now finds itself as the source of unsavory headlines across the web, Delta has just issued a statement regarding Saleh's controversial video. The statement alleges that the removal of Saleh and his friend was prompted by a "disturbance" that led to "more than 20 customers expressing their discomfort." Read the full statement below.
Two customers were removed from this flight and later rebooked after a disturbance in the cabin resulted in more than 20 customers expressing their discomfort. We're conducting a full review to understand what transpired. We are taking allegations of discrimination very seriously; our culture requires treating others with respect.
Saleh has continued to speak about the incident on Twitter and is actively encouraging his followers to boycott Delta. He has confirmed that he was rebooked on another flight, on which there were no reported mishaps.