The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion United’s new pre-flight checklist

United Airlines said a man wouldn’t give up his spot on a flight. According to witnesses, he was pulled screaming from his seat by security and back to the terminal at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. (Video: The Washington Post)

Before you seek to board a plane, please ask yourself the following questions. Better to ask them before something happens than after! You may not deserve to fly, it turns out.

  1. Are you completely without sin?
  2. Are you sure? Think back onto your past. Have you stolen, committed adultery or eaten of unclean meats?
  3. What is in your browser history?
  4. Have you ever lusted in your heart?
  5. Have you been rude to your mother?
  6. Have you smoked the Demon Weed, even a single time?
  7. Have you committed a crime, any crime, doesn’t matter if you’ve already been punished for the crime, just that it’s there on your record to mark you apart from the Good People. If so, why did you leave your house? Society is not meant for FLAWED people like yourself. You should be covered in sackcloth and ashes and your health care should be taken from you.
  8. Okay, but have you ever done anything GOOD in your life?
  9. Do you compare favorably or unfavorably to Mother Teresa?
  10. People like to think that bad things do not happen to good people. If something bad were to happen to you, is there something in your past that could be used to justify it?
  11. Has a picture ever been taken of you that could be used to paint you in an unflattering light? Halloween costumes count.
  12. Are you a child (white person under 40)?
  13. Have you left luggage unattended?
  14. Have you left luggage unattended in your heart?
  15. Did you ever do something just a little wrong, like someone asked you “Can you watch my laptop?” and you said “Yes” but then you forgot until they came back from the bathroom, and fortunately it hadn’t been stolen, but honestly that was entirely on the universe and had nothing to do with you?
  16. Did you ever do something majorly wrong but completely irrelevant to whether or not you paid for a ticket to ride this plane?
  17. Are you an angel? Angels fly free.
  18. What are you wearing? This may be used against you.
  19. Are you one of those Boys Who Will Be Boys? You know the ones I mean. If so, ignore the rest of this questionnaire and good luck with your promising swimming career.
  20. Actually, wait, are you white? (If so, you may disregard the previous 19 questions. If not, I have another questionnaire for you before you drive from place to place or attempt to make a purchase from a store.)