Southwest Airlines says the reason "L Word" actress Leisha Hailey and her partner Camila Grey were removed from a flight was not because of a public display of affection — which has been described as a lesbian kiss — but because of "loud profanity," according to The Hollywood Reporter.
As previously reported, Hailey said in a series of tweets that she was kicked off the plane because she kissed her girlfriend. In a subsequent statement the actress said the display of affection was "modest," and stressed that she would pursue a complaint against the airline.
But Southwest Airlines shifted the focus to what happened after airline staff contacted the couple. “Additional reports from our employees and customers onboard flight 2274 during a stop in El Paso on Sunday now confirm profane language was being used loudly by two passengers,” Southwest said in a statement. "Although we have reports of what customers characterize as an excessive public display of affection, ultimately their aggressive reaction led to their removal from the aircraft."
Southwest added, "We do not tolerate discrimination against anyone for any reason."
The THR story also notes, "This updated [Southwest Airlines] statement and the one released by Hailey and Grey earlier on Tuesday actually agree on the point that the verbal exchange became elevated. The couple admit they became ‘verbally upset’ after they claim the flight attendant told them the company is a ‘family oriented airline.’ "
THR continues, "The two statements also seem to agree that the couple was approached initially based on customer complaints stating that the display of affection was ‘excessive.’ And that may be the point of contention for Hailey and Grey, who state, ‘We were not making out or creating any kind of spectacle of ourselves, it was one, modest kiss.’ Southwest Airlines did not immediately return a request for clarification."