Green Room

Gay kissers led off plane for making a scene

posted at 11:18 am on September 27, 2011 by

Full disclosure: I am not familiar with the work of actress Leisha Hailey. In fact, I never heard of her before today.

That would probably still be the case if she and her better (other?) half hadn’t made headlines for “kissing and telling” on a commercial airliner mid-flight.

Actually a word about those headlines is in order. The banner at The Hollywood Reporter, which is typical, reads “’L Word’ Actress Leisha Hailey Tweets She Was Kicked Off Southwest Airlines Flight After Kissing Girlfriend.” That gives you the basic outlines of the story, but the ostensible chronology and cause and effect are wrong. The women were taken off the plane after it landed. And it was not because they had been kissing.

As best as I reconstruct (the details vary depending on the source), Hailey and her girlfriend, Camila Grey, were exchanging saliva during a flight from Baltimore to St. Louis. Nearby passengers complained that the women’s expression of affection was “excessive,” which in turn prompted a flight attendant to tell them their behavior was inappropriate. Hailey concluded she and Grey were the targets of discrimination.

Apparently, words between the actress and airline personnel grew heated. Once the plane landed Hailey and Grey were led off the plane—in Hailey’s own words—“for getting upset about the issue.”

Upon deplaning, Hailey went to work compiling a complete dossier of the incident on her Twitter page via a half dozen outraged tweets, beginning with:

I have been discriminated against by @SouthwestAir. Flt. attendant said that it was a ‘family’ airline and kissing was not ok.

An employee at Southwest followed, tweeting: “I’m so sorry! Can you please follow/DM [direct message] me more details so we can get to the bottom of this? Thanks!”

The airline later tweeted the following statement:

Initial reports indicate that we received several passenger complaints characterizing the behavior as excessive. Our crew, responsible for the comfort of all Customers on board, approached the passengers based solely on behavior and not gender. The conversation escalated to a level that was better resolved on the ground, as opposed to in flight. We regret any circumstance where a passenger does not have a positive experience on Southwest and we are ready to work directly with the passengers involved to offer our heartfelt apologies for falling short of their expectations.

Were the passengers who objected “homophobes” who overreacted to a simple peck between two women? It’s possible. It’s equally possible that Hailey and Grey were making a public display of their “equal rights” by vying in front of a planeload of hapless passengers for membership in the Mile High Club.

All I know is if what happened to these two women once the plane touched down—viz., getting to exit before all the other passengers— qualifies as being “kicked off,” I urge the airlines to kick me off the next I fly. I promise not to accuse them of heterophobia if they do.

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Except that they were asked to stop because they were being inappropriate in an enclosed public space where others were forced to be in their immediate company, not becuase they were being lesbians.

The same thing would have been asked of a straight couple.

Good Lt on September 27, 2011 at 11:23 AM

Southwest probably needs to start considering cameras in the passenger cabins to document passenger behavior for incidents like this (and Southwest has had a few other problems with passengers behaving badly in recent years).

jon1979 on September 27, 2011 at 11:45 AM

Publicity stunt for herself and for the gay community.

rbj on September 27, 2011 at 12:00 PM

I’m hetero, but would be offended by overt displays had heteros been the perpetrators.

Bottom line is, there is a time and place for such things. A plane full of people is not that place. If you want to be affectionate in this way, may I suggest a private plane, private train car, car, or private bus.

It’s obvious they were doing this, just to push an envelope, then want to make everyone a homophobe for not being entertained by it.

capejasmine on September 27, 2011 at 12:15 PM

Also…I knew Leisha looked familiar, but not from the L Word. I don’t get the channels that play it. Anyway…I did a look see, and she was the pixie haired girl in the Yoplait commercials, that sat around with another woman saying that it the yogurt was so good, and compared it to something. lol Just an fyi. 😀

capejasmine on September 27, 2011 at 12:23 PM

Man, I used to be agnostic on the whole gay issue, but they pushed me into the opposing camp by consistently behaving as bullies. This is just one more shove AWAY from acceptance of their point of view.
They’re so hungry for a Woolworth’s Lunch Counter moment, believing their situation to be on the same level as that of the Civil Rights protesters of the 60s, that they resort to pushing and pushing and pushing the limits of acceptable public behavior when they fail to get any reaction from the alleged “homophobic” American public. If they want to continue undermining their own cause in this manner, so be it.

mugged on September 27, 2011 at 12:28 PM

Totally not a fan of PDAs. My pet peeve: Hetero PDAs at our community pool. I call this species the “love birds”. They lock in an embrace, with woman’s legs wrapped around male, and instead of swimming they kinda bounce up and down, with some kissing mixed in for good measure. It’s the ultimate, “Get a room!” moment and particularly inappropriate around children. Apparently it got bad enough one day with one couple that the pool monitor had to ask them to “disengage”:)

Buy Danish on September 27, 2011 at 12:44 PM

So, to recap: sucking face in public, 18 inches from other people who paid good money just to fly somewhere and wish you’d stop, is the political equivalent of being black and trying to get served in a restaurant in Alabama in 1962.

J.E. Dyer on September 27, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Correct, JE Dyer. And if you disagree, you probably are a closeted Gay with urges who is a misogynistic blah blah blah and can’t help but oppress the poor, picked on actresses and you probably need to be beaten to a pulp and forced to watch Folsom Street Fair events for the next 20 years to teach you “tolerance” and “respect”, because you are a bigot! America’s freedom depends on those consequences!

Vanceone on September 27, 2011 at 2:12 PM

membership in the Mile High Club.

They wish. Maybe if they were nicer to the pilot?

Twana on September 27, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Trust me, I know gays like this. They do things like this to create a scene.

SouthernGent on September 27, 2011 at 2:27 PM

I looked up pics of both of them and, frankly, I probably would have enjoyed watching that.

I’m a pig. What can I say?

SWLiP on September 27, 2011 at 2:36 PM

Trust me, I know gays like this. They do things like this to create a scene.

SouthernGent on September 27, 2011 at 2:27 PM

I know straights like this. Daddy didn’t hug them enough when they were little.

Kataklysmic on September 27, 2011 at 3:15 PM

This is the entire gay issue in a nutshell.

Nobody cares that a girl is kissing a girl.

Everybody thinks they should get a room.

Girl and girl claim to be victims.

I can bet money that if it was a girl and a guy going at it hot and heavy, they’d have faced the same scrutiny.

Gays are only victims of their own made-up reality.

uknowmorethanme on September 27, 2011 at 3:21 PM

SWLiP on September 27, 2011 at 2:36 PM

I’m pretty sure what you said is adequate. So, would you have enjoyed it with your 7 year old sitting next to you?

PDA…ughh…Grow up.

pannw on September 27, 2011 at 4:11 PM

They picked the wrong airline. In their employment practices, SWA is very gay-friendly.

Pensees on September 27, 2011 at 11:42 PM

Ditto to all comments except

SWLiP on September 27, 2011 at 2:36 PM

Nice response to that foolishness,

pannw on September 27, 2011 at 4:11 PM

itsnotaboutme on September 28, 2011 at 7:02 AM

Were the passengers who objected “homophobes” who overreacted to a simple peck between two women? It’s possible. –Howard Portnoy

Possible that a slutty attention-whore Hollywood type was accurate & a variety of witnesses were wrong? Not.

itsnotaboutme on September 28, 2011 at 7:06 AM

It’s equally possible that Hailey and Grey were making a public display of their “equal rights” by vying in front of a planeload of hapless passengers for membership in the Mile High Club.

Indeed. The militant homosexual version of the “Flying Imams” strategy. Create a scene then have your constant grievance group declare some kind of “day of rage” or another.

whatcat on September 28, 2011 at 6:17 PM

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