This video is just bizarre. An old guy wearing a red “Make America Great Again” cap made a big scene on a United Airlines plane in Shanghai, China bound for Newark, New Jersey. He was eventually taken off the plane by Chinese police.
Apparently the guy thought he deserved an upgrade and was trying to forcibly take one by not letting anyone sit in the same row.
It’s unclear whether Chinese police did jail the man or who he was. As others on the United Airlines flight described it, he started arguing before he stepped onto the plane.
“Obviously, the hat provoked some of the stuff,” said Alexis Zimmerman, who was flying back to Newark from a business trip.
The man took an aisle seat three rows in front of her. She said he refused to let anyone sit beside him.
“He wanted to sit in the whole row by himself,” Zimmerman said.
Her video shows him leaning back in his seat — hands folded behind his red hat, feet propped on someone else’s arm rest — while a woman in crutches and many others stand in the aisle, snap photos and glare.
But the United crew in Shanghai remained polite and patient throughout Sunday’s ordeal, said Clark Gredoña, another passenger.
“He was trying to explain to the crew and captain … because he had points, he felt he deserved an upgrade,” he said. “So this was his way of getting it.”
But he got no upgrade. And before long, as seen in video, the man was waving his arms and shouting: “I have a seat here! … Shut up! … Moron!”
This went on for the better part of an hour, passengers Gredoña and Zimmerman said. And somehow in all of it, U.S. politics came up.
Of course U.S. politics came up. There is no escaping it.
“I know people don’t like my hat,” Zimmerman heard the man say.
“He berated a female passenger,” Gredoña said. “I think he called her Hillary. Then he called her a lesbian. I think he called a stewardess ‘sweetheart.’ ”
The man became “increasingly disruptive when asked to deplane,” a United spokesman said in a brief statement. “Local law enforcement was called to assist.”
Police had no more luck persuading him than anyone else. So Zimmerman, Gredoña and every other passenger had to return to the terminal and wait for the officers to remove him from the plane.
The crowd of people inconvenienced by the man started chanting “Lock him up” as police took him away—an obvious dig inspired by the Trump hat and the rallies where “Lock her up” was changed about Hillary Clinton.