Billie Joe Armstrong, lead singer for Berkeley punk band Green Day, has said he was removed from a Southwest Airlines flight because he was wearing saggy pants.
The singer posted an item on his Twitter account Thursday around 7 p.m. stating that he had just been kicked off a Southwest flight “because my pants sagged too low!”
Southwest Airlines has not yet returned a call requesting comment on the reported incident, but responded to Armstrong’s tweet with one of its own stating “Very sorry for your experience tonight, someone from our Customer Relations Team will reach out to you to get more details.”
The incident echoed the June 15 arrest of Deshon Marman at San Francisco International Airport after he was removed from a U.S. Airways flight to Albuquerque, N.M.
San Francisco police said Marman, a student and football player at the University of New Mexico, was told by airline crew members several times to pull up his pants to cover his underwear both before and after he boarded the plan.
Police said he refused to leave the plane and then resisted officers when they tried to handcuff him.
Marman’s family has said he told airline staff that he could not pull up his pants because he was carrying bags and his hands were full. After he sat down, however, the plane’s pilot approached him and ordered him off the plane.
The San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office declined to file charges after reviewing the case, and supporters have said the incident was racially motivated.
Marman’s family is filing a lawsuit this week, according to the Rev. Amos Brown, president of the San Francisco chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. The NAACP has asked or an apology from U.S. Airways and has tried repeatedly to meet with airline officials about the incident, but so far has been rebuffed, Brown said.
Brown said that this week’s incident involving Armstrong, who is white, did not change his view that Marman’s arrest was racially motivated.
“This young man was arrested, they didn’t even read him his rights,” Brown said, speaking of Marman. “So that shows a disparity of treatment in terms of the way they handled it. Deshon Marman was not just put off the flight, he was arrested.”
Sara Gaiser, Bay City News