Friday, June 22, 2007

Email Crap

A version of the following story was emailed to me. It included "congratulations", probably undeserved, given to British Airways, confidently asserted that "this story is true" and said that if I was against racism, I would not delete it, but pass it on.

Because I am against racism, I DID delete it, since it promotes a racial (national) stereotype. I don't understand why some people seem to miss that.

Collected via e-mail, 1998]

On a British Airways flight from Johannesburg, a middle-aged, well-off white South African lady has found herself sitting next to a Black man. She called the cabin crew attendant over to complain about her seating.

"What seems to be the problem Madam?" asked the attendant. "Can't you see?" she said, " You've sat me next to a kaffir. I can't possibly sit next to this disgusting human. Find me another seat!"

"Please calm down, Madam," the stewardess replied. "The flight is very full today, but I'll tell you what I'll do - I'll go and check to see if we have any seats available in club or first class."

The woman cocks a snooty look at the outraged Black man beside her (not to mention many of the surrounding passengers). A few minutes later the stewardess returns with the good news, which she delivers to the lady, who cannot help but look at the people around her with a smug and self-satisfied grin:

"Madam, unfortunately, as I suspected, economy is full. I've spoken to the cabin services director, and club is also full. However, we do have one seat in first class." Before the lady has a chance to answer, the stewardess continues . . . "It is most extraordinary to make this kind of upgrade, however, and I have had to get special permission from the captain. But, given the circumstances, the captain felt that it was outrageous that someone should be forced to sit next such an obnoxious person."

Having said that, the stewardess turned to the Black man sitting next to the lady, and said: "So if you'd like to get your things, sir, I have your seat ready for you . . ." At which point, apparently the surrounding passengers stood and gave a standing ovation while the Black man walked up to the front of the plane.

See for more info, esp. re. what happened in New Zealand when this story was used in a promotional campaign for breakfast cereal.

Please, please, join me in taking the 5 or fewer minutes it takes to research this stuff that gets sent to us and conclude that almost all of it is crap and should NOT be forwarded or put in our Christian newsletters. Please.

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