The “Youtube sensation” Adam Saleh recently made an accusation that he was kicked off a Delta Airlines flight for speaking Arabic. My first reaction to this story was utter shock and horror. According to Mr. Saleh, he was speaking on the phone to his mother when a “white” lady nearby said she was uncomfortable. There was a verbal altercation, and he and his friend got kicked off the plane. Adam Saleh recorded part of the episode, and aired it on his popular Youtube channel.
What is or was your reaction upon hearing this story for this first time? Anger? Sadness? Confusion? What is the world coming to, right? Well, this is one of those situations where it pays to check the facts before drawing a conclusion. Who exactly is Adam Saleh? My independent research (cough… Google) has shown that he is a young man well known for “crying wolf.” For example, he once published a video of himself being allegedly frisked by a policeman for dressing like a Muslim. It later emerged that this video was faked and that the “policeman” was an actor. Adam’s defence? Apparently it was a re-enactment of what had happened earlier. I agree that a person’s prior wrongdoing does not conclusively prove that their current action is wrong. It does however make you think twice, thrice and even four times about the integrity of their current position.
An alternative version of events, according to a witness on the plane, is that Adam Saleh randomly pumped his first in the air and shouted in Arabic on 3 occasions, causing her to state that she was uncomfortable, and that this is what kicked off the whole debacle. Now that puts a whole different spin on things. I know I would feel extremely uncomfortable under those circumstances! Here is a great summary by David Wood.
Whatever the facts, this is a lesson that life has taught me well. There’s always another side to the story, and you are forming your opinion on incomplete facts, if you have not heard that other side. As much as possible, always seek out both sides of the story, digest them, and then decide what you believe.
What is your opinion of Adam Saleh and the #boycott Delta trend?