A YouTube star is at the center of a firestorm after he was booted from a Delta Airlines flight shortly before takeoff this morning, reportedly for speaking Arabic to his mom on the phone.
Time magazine reports that Adam Saleh, whose popular prank videos have brought him more than 1.6 million subscribers to his YouTube account, was removed from the New York-bound flight from London along with another person after his conversation caused “discomfort” for other passengers.
Saleh posted a video of the incident on Twitter in which he can be seen saying, while still on the plane, “We’re getting kicked out because we spoke a different language. This is 2016.” He goes on to say, “You guys are racist,” as a number of other passengers appear transfixed by the incident.
“Saleh says in the footage that about six white people complained about him after the phone conversation with his mother,” Time reports. “His videos quickly went viral and sparked intense outrage on Twitter from people who promised to boycott Delta.”
Delta released a statement in which it said two people were kicked off the flight after a “disturbance in the cabin resulted in more than 20 customers expressing their discomfort.”
The Delta statement adds: “We’re conducting a full review to understand what transpired. We are taking allegations of discrimination very seriously; our culture requires treating others with respect.”