In the latest story of white privilege gone wild, an Ohio man has been charged with three counts of battery following an incident on a Frontier Airlines flight. Max Berry, a 22-year-old from Norwalk who looks like every fraternity’s president, was caught on video going completely berserk on a Frontier flight from Philadelphia to Miami on July 31.
The video, which was posted on Twitter by ABC News reporter Sam Sweeney, has already been viewed over 9 million times. In the clip, Berry can be heard yelling, “My parents are worth over f*cking 2 million goddamn dollars. And you know what? You f*cking suck”. I mean, I know he’s flying a low-cost airline, and while I am certainly worth nowhere near $2 million (take off six zeros and that’s hitting closer to my net worth), $2 million is not exactly the flex Berry thinks it is. I’m sure the airline that pulled in over $2 billion in 2018 is shaking over this guy whose parents… own a nice house in the suburbs.
Later on in the video, he screams, “My grandpa is worth more than this f*ckin’ plane” before screaming something about a “f*cking attorney” and telling a flight attendant trying to get him to calm down to “shut the f*ck up.” Really checking all the boxes for white dude rage fits. (The New York Times was unable to confirm if Mr. Berry did, in fact, retain an attorney.) Other passengers can be heard laughing, probably because this is truly the embodiment of a terrible joke—or, more accurately, a hateful comment one tries to pass off as a joke upon realizing nobody’s laughing. He later appears to punch a male crew member.
Frontier passenger allegedly touched 2 flight attendants breasts, then screamed his parents are worth $2 million, before punching a flight attendant. Frontier suspended the crew for duct taping the passenger to his seat as they landed in Miami. 22 yr old Max Berry is in custody. pic.twitter.com/4xS9Rwvafx
— Sam Sweeney (@SweeneyABC) August 3, 2021
Things started to go south for Mr. Do You Know Who My Dad Is when he ordered his third drink on board (he had already consumed two drinks prior to the meltdown). According to the criminal complaint filed with the Miami-Dade Police Department, Berry brushed his empty cup against a flight attendant’s backside. The flight attendant told him, “don’t touch me.”
Then, Berry spilled his drink and went to the bathroom, from which he emerged shirtless. A flight attendant informed him that he needed to be fully dressed and even helped him get a new shirt out of his carry-on. Re-clothed, he walked around the cabin for about 15 minutes.
That’s when he groped the breasts of another flight attendant, who told him not to touch her and instructed him to sit down. The complaint also said that Berry put his arms around the same two flight attendants later and groped their breasts again. When the male flight attendant approached Berry to ask him to calm down, Berry punched him in the face.
The crew had no choice but to restrain Berry by duct taping him to his seat. (The NY Times reports that a seatbelt extender was also used to restrain him.) He was arrested upon landing at Miami International Airport, which surely put a real damper on his Miami trip.
At first, Frontier Airlines released a statement saying that the flight attendants involved with duct taping Berry had been suspended “pending further investigation”, saying, “unfortunately, the proper policies for restraining a passenger were not followed.” Frontier did not elaborate to the NY Times about what said proper policies for restraining a passenger were, and whether duct tape qualified.
The Association of Flight Attendants dragged Frontier’s initial response; its president, Sara Nelson, said in a statement, “Management suspended the crew as a knee-jerk reaction to a short video clip that did not show the full incident. Management should be supporting the crew at this time, not suspending them.”
After receiving backlash for suspending employees who were allegedly sexually and physically assaulted, Frontier quickly backtracked and at 4:10pm ET on August 3, amended their statement.
“Frontier Airlines maintains the utmost value, respect, concern, and support for all of our flight attendants, including those who were assaulted on this flight. We are supporting the needs of these team members and are working with law enforcement to fully support the prosecution of the passenger involved.” The statement also clarified that the flight attendants involved were placed on paid leave, which the airline says is “in line with an event of this nature pending an investigation.”
Berry was released on a $1,500 bail, and the FBI declined to press felony charges. Berry graduated in May from Ohio Wesleyan University where—and you truly cannot make this up—he was given an award from the Greek life community for being a “perfect role model” and for working to “fight to dismantle fraternity stereotypes.” Stereotypes he singlehandedly embodied all of on that 2 hour and 37 minute flight.
A spokesman for Ohio Wesleyan told the NY Times in an email that the university is “saddened to learn of this situation with one of our graduates.” The spokesman, Cole Hatcher, also asserted, “The case does not involve the university, and the incidents depicted do not reflect Ohio Wesleyan’s values.”
Images: Jason Schronce / Shutterstock.com; SweeneyABC / Twitter; Giphy
I will complain about almost anything hate to complain, but this “genocide celebration” three-day weekend has really thrown me off. Specifically, I’ve been convinced it’s Friday since Tuesday, and my mood has greatly suffered for it. On the bright side, the rest of America seems to be feeling cranky too. One Florida woman, for example, tried to take an emotional support squirrel on a plane this Tuesday. While this kind of story doesn’t exactly renew my faith in humanity, it definitely makes me feel better about acting like a crazy b*tch all week. There’s crazy, and then there’s emotional support squirrel-on-a-plane crazy. Here’s how the real-life drama of Snakes on a Plane a squirrel on a plane played out.
The woman (unnamed, but pictured here) was flying out of Florida, which makes perfect sense. Case closed, bring in the dancing lobsters. JK. She notified Frontier Airlines that she’d be bringing an emotional support animal when she booked her ticket. But of course, she failed to mention the species. Somehow, the presence of a squirrel in her purse didn’t become an issue until the plane was fully boarded. I have a TON of questions for Orlando TSA, because I can’t seem to get an extra half-ounce of makeup remover through security, let alone a f*cking SQUIRREL.
Unsurprisingly, passengers objected to the presence of a squirrel in their midst. I can’t speak to Florida squirrels, but the ones in NYC are bushy-tailed disease monsters, so I’m fully on the passengers’ side here. Frontier Airlines—who clarified that their emotional support policy covers cats or dogs, but not rodents—asked her to exit the plane. When she refused, police came and all passengers evacuated the plane, leading to this spectacular video.
— Brandon Nixon (@bnix4) October 10, 2018
Ultimately, this whole debacle delayed the flight by two hours, which would have been enough for me to murder that squirrel in front of her throw a small fit. According to one extreme pushover fellow passenger, “for the most part, people found it funny.” I mean, they’re right that it’s f*cking hilarious, but very big of them to see that in the moment.
I just feel like if you are able to wrangle an actual squirrel without getting rabies and THEN teach it how to provide emotional support, the airline should just let you take it on the plane.
— sarafcarter (@sarafcarter) October 11, 2018
In the past few years, we’ve seen an increasing number of “weird support animals kicked off planes” stories, including one ostrich and one pig. In comparison, an emotional support squirrel seems pretty tame. But it got me thinking that we haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of emotional support animals. So, without further ado, here’s a list of support animals I hope to see kicked off planes in years to come (y’know, assuming we still have a planet):
Support Pet Rock
Support Chia Pet
Support Bratz Doll
The point here? Uh, people are f*cking nuts and it’s really funny. Also, if you’re going to delay someone’s flight, at least have the decency to make it a good story.
Images: Bram Naus / Unsplash; bnix4, sarafcarter / Twitter