Sikh mother Valarie Kaur was forced to show her breast pump on a flight from Minneapolis to Los Angeles to prove she wasn’t a terrorist. The experience was reportedly so embarrassing, Valarie decided to share details about it in a Facebook post. Now, that post has gone viral. According to the Daily Mail, the ordeal began after she boarded an outbound Delta Airlines flight to Los Angeles on Wednesday, December 2.
— Sr. Simone Campbell (@sr_simone) December 3, 2015
Initially, Valarie was excited about the trip to Los Angeles, because she was traveling to celebrate her baby’s first birthday. But, the excitement was slightly overshadowed when she was profiled. Apparently, some of the passengers became angry when she boarded the flight.
— Sunny Hundal (@sunny_hundal) December 4, 2015
Valarie Kaur, an American and a Sikh, who is also a lawyer, filmmaker, and interfaith leader, was profiled by passengers who believed she was a terrorist. One passenger in particular reportedly became alarmed when she removed the luggage tag attached to her carry-on bag where her breast pump had been stored. The passenger interrogated her about the bag, and the interrogation reportedly led to the terrorist accusations.
“He was a white man and his face was angry,” Kaur wrote in the post. “He asked why I removed the tag. I offered to explain, but he said he didn’t want to know.”
Instead, a gate attendant intervened. However, she did not do so for Valarie Kaur’s safety. Based on the claims, the gate attendant seemed just as “alarmed and angered” as the passenger. She was asked to remove her belongings from the luggage bag, which revealed her breast pump, acccording to Yahoo! News.
“I explained that I was a nursing mother, but she still didn’t let me board with my bag. Her face was just as angry. I had to pull out the breast pump to show her. Only then was I allowed to take my seat. All the passengers in first class watched and I smiled weakly to show them I wasn’t a terrorist.
“I’m sitting on the flight now, shaken,” she wrote. “I’m thinking of the countless subtle acts of profiling of Muslim, Sikh and brown bodies in the last 14 years. The double-pain: I was reading tweets on my phone about the #SanBernardino shooting while in line, but my grieving was interrupted by a passenger seeing me as suspect.”
Here is the Facebook post Valarie Kaur shared:
— Valarie Kaur (@valariekaur) December 3, 2015
Almost immediately after Valarie Kaur’s post was shared via Facebook, it went viral. In fact, Valarie’s post garnered so much attention Delta Airlines issued a statement of apology for the incident via Twitter. Valarie shared an update about the apology on Facebook.
“Delta responded immediately over Twitter and offered an apology. The rest of the flight crew was truly professional and respectful. The responses to this post are overwhelming. Thank you!”
Due to the rise in terrorist attacks, many Americans fear any Muslim may pose a threat or have some type of affiliation to ISIS. Unfortunately, even innocent Muslims are being profiled for their beliefs. Unfortunately, there is no way to determine how long foreigners will suffer for the heinous works of others.
Do you think Valarie Kaur should have been searched or was the airline wrong? Share your thoughts.
[Image via Facebook]