Singer Jason Derulo seems to have had an unpleasant experience at Miami Airport a few hours ago, which he’s going off on a tirade about. He started by Instagramming a picture of an American employee with the following caption:
.@americanair I spent millions on your airline throughout the past ten years between myself and my entire staff but have still experienced racial discrimination today at miami airport!!! Called 15 police officers on me as if I’m a criminal!
It’s not ok that when you find out who I am the gears change!
Fuck that!! I want answers #conciergekey#conciergekeymember#thecaptainneedstoshowrespecttoo cause he could #cashmeoutsidehowboutdat#notypo#ifiwasanyoneelseiwouldhavebeenarrested
So, what did American do to racially discriminate against Jason?
Well, according to TMZ, Jason is an American Concierge Key member, which is their invitation only status. He was traveling with his crew of eight people from Miami to Los Angeles, and allegedly they showed up too late to check bags. Unfortunately he had 19 bags to check, which would have been fine if he showed up on time, since his companions traveling on the same reservation can take extra bags as well.
However, since they arrived late, he left one person on his team behind with all the bags. As you’d expect, when one person has 19 bags, they’re going to be charged a lot of money. Baggage limits don’t “transfer” in the way Jason imagined. That’s where the incident started, where Jason claims to have experienced racism:
That’s when all hell broke loose. By this time, Jason and his team were on the plane and it had pulled away from the gate. His cellphone rang, and the guy he left with the bags said AA wanted to charge him $6k for the excess luggage. Jason was outraged and demanded that the plane go back to the gate so he could get off.
He says the pilot went nuts on him, and the cops were waiting as he got off. And, he says, if he wasn’t Jason Derulo and instead just a random black guy, he’d be in jail.
So Jason demanded that the plane return to the gate and presumably didn’t follow crewmember instructions, and then the flight was met by the police. It doesn’t sound to me like this has anything to do with race. Demanding a plane return to the gate and presumably not following crewmember instructions is a huge violation of FAA regulations, and a flight will be met by police in such a situation regardless of what race you are or who you are.
It sounds like he’s playing both sides here — he wants special treatment because he spends “millions” on American, but then claims the airline is being racist when they don’t make an exception.
Now, all that being said, I do think American could have made an exception and checked his bags, given his status and the situation. If he is in fact spending a lot of money on the airline and has their invitation only status, then accommodating the bags on the next flight shouldn’t be a big deal. It seems short-sighted not to. But that doesn’t in any way warrant his behavior, and that’s not something he’s entitled to.
Here’s a video of Jason explaining his side of the story:
Even by his account he comes across as a grade-A jerk. He says he told the pilot not to talk to him like he was on a lower level than him, and then says the situation is above the pilot’s “pay grade.” He says “don’t speak to me like I did something wrong.” Uh, dude, if you forced the plane to return to the gate, you did do something wrong.
What do you make of this Jason Derulo & American Airlines situation?