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United Airlines found itself in a hot PR mess this weekend after barring some ten-year-old girls from flying because they were wearing leggings. Which was stupid, because what else are you supposed to wear on a plane?

The internet swiftly reacted, with several celebrities rightfully calling the airline dumb for doing that.

Although it is hard not to feel bad for the social media manager who was probably wearing leggings at that very moment, and was also probably very sad to have their first opportunity to interact with Levar Burton be tainted in that way.

Their defense has been that the girls were Pass travelers — meaning that they got to fly for free or for a discount due to being related to a person who works for the airline, and that those customers have a special dress code. The thing is, literally no one, other than the people who check their tickets, would have any reason to know that. Or care. Most people don’t even know that that’s a thing to begin with! The only reason I even know is because I have a friend who works for Jet Blue. Literally no one at the airport was gonna go “Oh man, United! You’re letting ten-year-olds fly on a pass wearing leggings? HAVE SOME STANDARDS!”

No, they were all too busy trying to get a drink and a quick trip to Hudson News for some snacks in before boarding. There was no reason for this.

Jonathan Guerin, a spokesperson for United, explained this policy to the New York Times:

Mr. Guerin said pass travelers are “representing” the company and as such are not allowed to wear Lycra and spandex leggings, tattered or ripped jeans, midriff shirts, flip-flops or any article of clothing that shows their undergarments.

“It’s not that we want our standby travelers to come in wearing a suit and tie or that sort of thing,” he said. “We want people to be comfortable when they travel as long as it’s neat and in good taste for that environment.”

I am going to take a guess here and figure that the ten-year-olds in question were just wearing normal leggings, as one would, and were not exactly trying to board the plane dressed like the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. According to Shannon Watts, who witnessed the event, the girls were appropriately covered up (we asked if they were just “crotching out” all over the place! she said no!). And even if they were not — hey, they’re ten years old, so cool your jets. Normal leggings are 100% appropriate here — if not explicitly necessary, because planes are uncomfortable as hell. Everyone wears leggings on planes. Even fancy model type people like Gigi Hadid.

As a model, I would imagine that Gigi Hadid knows more about fashion than Jonathan from United Airlines PR. So there!

United is now scrambling and scrambling trying to assure customers they can wear leggings on their planes, even issuing a press release to tell them that their “leggings are welcome.” Because they know full well that a leggings ban would have dire consequences for their business.

I think we should all agree that leggings should be “welcome” for anyone who flies in a plane, whether they are a “regular customer” or not. The fact that these clothing restrictions are just for Pass travelers does not make them any less ridiculous. I say this as someone who once walked out of a job at Applebee’s after being told by her manager that her plain black headband could be interpreted as a gang symbol, and also got in trouble at another job for wearing one of those bra strap headbands that were a thing in the ’90s and accused by a 50-year-old man of wearing underwear on her head.

Leggings for customers! Leggings for Pass travelers! Leggings for everyone who doesn’t feel like wearing pants on a plane! Leggings for everyone, period!

[New York Times]

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  • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

    For shit’s sake, United.

    Oh Wells.

    • Historicat

      United sucks.

      The End

  • Hobbes’ Evil Twin

    What are these “pants” of which you speak?

    • Me not sure

      Like jammie bottoms only less casual.

  • Me not sure

    What’s their position on whether one has pants on or not?

    • Msgr_MΩment

      anti-wonketian.

  • writersbloc
  • God Emperor Emeritus

    This kind of shit is exhibit N+1 in “why I would rather spend 8 hours on the train than take a 1 hour flight”.

    I like the idea of flying, but holy shit, the experience is all around terrible.

    • Beowoof14

      Seriously, I love the train, relax, read books have coffee or beer. And my favorite ride drops me in Midtown Manhattan.

      • Liberoid Ron

        Up until the introduction of the 747, airliners were the choice for elites who wished to travel in comfort and style. Then suddenly there were jumbo jets and high-capacity jobs like the DC-8 Super 61, and the emphasis switched to filling as many of those seats as possible. Knee room shrank, first class shrank or vanished altogether, and now the civilised way to travel is by train, while airlines become the flying equivalent of the Tokyo subway.

        • Beowoof14

          I have to admit a bias to trains. My father worked on the railroad, my grandfather was a railroad guy. And I worked at company that made computer controls and wayside signals for railroads. So I am prejudiced as I remember my first real train from when I was 4. Also, remember seeing my dad in the tower in the train yard running the switches. It was a very cool sight.

      • SpideySenser

        IK,R? I got so sick of the whole check-in thingy after 9/11 (3 hrs for a 90 min flight? REALLY?) That I switched to trains. Mostly just from MA to FL. It takes 24 hours, but I did the whole read, relax, booze & snooze, movies and occasionally the dining car experience. But when my daughter started grad school, our window of travel opportunity for AmTrak shrunk, so it’s back to planes.

  • Greyhame
  • Mpeg

    “Sisterhood of the Traveling Leggings” just doesn’t have the same ring to it, somehow.

  • Beowoof14

    United blows, I avoid them thanks to all the bad service I have received in the past. This just gives me one more reason to avoid flying with them. Funny how standing three hours in a line at O’Hare, can influence your thoughts about a company.

    • SterWonk

      I grew up in Houston, which was a Continental hub (IAH), so that’s what we usually flew; I rarely flew pre-merger United. Post-merger, the combined entity has gone straight to hell in every regard. :-(

      • PubOption

        Unfortunately, I think post-USAir-merger American is even worse.

    • puredog

      I am married to United, as I have about 400,000 miles with them (and like 20K with anybody else).

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson
    • Beowoof14

      Love, and wish I knew this was there the last time United screwed me over.

  • formerChild

    Wow. I picked exactly the WRONG week to spend flat on my back in the hospital trying to follow the news through a drinking straw (my phone), instead of my normal fire hose (2 x 42 inch monitors), heh. But I defied the odds again (barely) so now I have time to catch up! I’m no longer a very prolific commenter, but I’m still here with y’all for a couple of hours a day!

    • Saxo the Grammarian

      Get well soon! And completely!

      • Lascauxcaveman

        Either the or die quickly. Oh wait, that’s right… AHCA didn’t pass. Never mind.

    • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

      Get well! <3

      We're glad you're with us. :)

    • Ill-Advised

      Congratulations! We’re glad you’re back. Please resume lurking and not commenting, so that we can continue upvoting your non-comments. (I think the commentczar’s out of town.)

  • MynameisBlarney

    OH FOR FUCKING FUCKS SAKE!

  • Vincent Ricola

    United can fuck off. 10-year-old children should be able to dress however they most feel comfortable when traveling, otherwise they’re twitchy and interrupting my in-flight naptime.

  • snark-lurker

    “crotching out all over the place”? thinking 18 & over hear, my roommate would like to know more about this “crotching out all over the place”

  • tapp_my_wire,please

    So, United’s motto ‘Fly the Friendly Thighs’ is a misnomer?

  • ManchuCandidate

    They’ve got leg(ing)s and United doesn’t know how to fly them.
    They look like jags, United knows how to choose them.
    They’re runnin’ leg wonderin’ how to tweet them.
    Would you get behind them if you could avoid them?
    United’s fiasco, United’s fiasco,
    Yeah, it’s alright.

  • Flashman

    The United “deep state” strikes back.

  • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

    Time to go Flirt – I mean, grocery shop.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/7c999584f527c8a9a69e1925bedbd1adc3248c2569d5dec8d4bcb4219fb73348.jpg

    Fuck the Women’s Clothing Police! The last time I wore this outfit, I got layed by a Gorgeous man half my age, and I hadn’t even found these red stockings yet. XD

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d772f590bf69380b25a19814499a7fa21c0dbfaae75036977424c902c6ca261d.jpg

    Later, Darlings :)

    • snark-lurker

      well chosen, spot on, good luck

      • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

        Thanx, Darlin’ :)

    • Lance Thrustwell

      Knock ’em dead, sweetie.

      • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

        Thanx! :) No luck on flirting, the one woman wasn’t there, but I got eggs and green beans and men were surprisingly polite. No catcalls, and 2 vehicles went out of their way to let me by. I tend to be over-polite when I’m in heels, it takes me a long time to cross, and these were both gentlemen. :)

    • Liberoid Ron

      I hope you’re not flying United!

      • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

        XD She wasn’t at work.

        Naw, I get it.

  • Msgr_MΩment
    • Liberoid Ron

      Oh, that is wonderful!

    • Rags

      So ryunnn thinks 4-5 is his bitch?

  • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

    I’m trying to wrap my head around this one, since the dress code for a Pass traveler is probably so deep in the handbook-weeds that the only employees who would know about it, and apply it, would be an employee 1) whose stick up their ass has a stick up its ass, or 2) who was actively looking for a reason to kick these girls off the plane.

    Since this is “Puritans never mind their own damn business” America, option 1 is definitely on the table, but I’m guessing that someone just had a grudge against Pass travelers living high off the mooching hog and decided to fuck with their day.

    • Ghenghis McCann

      The reason for having a dress code is to provide employment for the sort of people who see enforcing the dress code as their main purpose in life.

      • Celtic_Gnome

        A new administration came in at work that decided to tighten up the dress code, which had become lax under the previous administration. Their argument? Dressing professionally encourages you to act professionally. We minions pointed out that everyone in the previous administration who ordered us to lie to the public was dressed professionally when they did it.

        • Ill-Advised

          The more questionable the policy, the better-dressed it must be.

  • goonemeritus

    I have flown over 750,000 miles with United and on my best day I dressed like member of the Donner party after a hard winter.

    • Lance Thrustwell

      Many of the members were eventually… dismembered.

      • goonemeritus

        Just the small and the weak.

      • Ghenghis McCann

        Mmmm… Donner kebab.

        • Lance Thrustwell

          What they wouldn’t have given for a little curry!

    • formerChild

      I can’t recall what a well-dressed Donnerite would wear. Does the ensemble still require a bib?

      • puredog

        If it’s a long-like-Trump bib, it can serve the purpose of pants fairly well.

    • snark-lurker

      before or after dessert?

    • Ill-Advised

      I’m thinking you weren’t guilty of traveling while female, though.

      It’s kinda like driving while black, or voting while Latina, but with special anti-incentives randomly provided by both uniformed staff and helpful random fellow passengers.

  • MynameisBlarney

    So…a goddamned Puritan UA busybody got all titillated over young girls in tight pants?

    Perhaps they should search that persons search history.

    • Vincent Ricola

      TEN YEAR OLD GIRLS FFS!

    • snark-lurker

      good idea!

  • Lance Thrustwell

    When I first heard about this, I thought they had thrown grown women off the plane (which would have been bad enough). But a couple of little girls? What – were they supposed to be wearing – gingham frocks? Bonnets?

    • schmannity

      Amish Air.

  • Chadwells
    • snark-lurker

      ho-boy

    • SpideySenser

      Do you own a mirror?

  • Relativicus

    I know what this is. It’s a dress code for employees and family who fly without a reservation. I know it as flying “non-rev.” Though I haven’t worked at an airline for 20 years, the concept was becoming out-moded even then. As long as you looked “nice” more formal wear like a tie was beginning to be overlooked. How strictly UA applies it these days is unknown to me but this incident sounds like an over-zealous employee thinking with the rule book and not his/her noggin.

  • Red Bird Ω

    I used to fly on Pass tickets when I was young because my Dad worked for the airlines. And yes, I pretty much had to dress like I was going to a casual business event to get through. It was worth it for us because we often got bumped up to 1st class.

  • Bill D. Burger

    Well…the little tarts might have offended the delicate sensibilities of many of the people who do get on board. Like this chap:

    http://assets.nydailynews.com/polopoly_fs/1.1942973.1410975648!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/article_750/passanger-shaming.jpg

    or these tasteful trend setters:

    https://i.ytimg.com/vi/AkCkF6CFVZA/maxresdefault.jpg

    • Nockular cavity

      OK, that’s it. Burkhas for EVERYONE!

    • snark-lurker

      1 out of 3 not bad

  • schmannity

    THIS IS ALL REINCE PRIEBUS’ FAULT!!@1!!1

    • snark-lurker

      why must you continue to torment me with that Hannity mug or Is That You, Sean?!

  • Crystalclear12

    How much money are they going to spend cleaning up this completely avoidable mess?
    But the important thing is to put those pass travelers in there place!

  • Me not sure

    United needs to consult with Wal-Mart. Acceptable fashion has become far more flexible these days. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fa402730f9c0b192eb4f79214b31a512b61bdfa3178b4b68dd96336b55be1695.jpg

    • snark-lurker

      i got no prob w/dat. free world (sometimes in some places)

    • Villago Delenda Est

      If the woman is paying for her groceries, no problem! If she’s a “pass” shopper, well, let’s treat her differently!

      • Me not sure

        She puts the ass in pass.

  • Liberoid Ron

    On the off-chance that I fly on an airliner again (I love flying, but an airliner is just a bus with a lousy view and cramped seats) I think I shall invest in some leggings.

  • Msgr_MΩment
    • I have dubbed them the dupedplorables.
      New word, heard It here first, I made it up, must credit Jen B.

  • Mike

    I can understand a dress code…for adults!
    Lawd knows I don’t want to sit next to some Bannon looking hobo who hasn’t showered in 3 days while making the red eye run back to NYC.
    But 10 year old kids gotta somehow be exempt, it’s just common sense.

    • I can even understand a dress code for children. Fine, cool.
      But what part of leggings is inappropriate to wear, exactly? Especially for a child?

  • arglebargle

    Personally, I would like to shake the hand of the man or woman who invented yoga pants. Unless I’m in Wal-Mart for some unknown godforsaken reason.

    • snark-lurker

      yes, isn’t spandex a wonderful thing?

      • DainBramage
      • Liberoid Ron

        It is. I have an undersuit of white spandex I use when fursuiting. It’s washable, keeps sweat out of the fur, and makes it far easier to put the suit on since it just slithers over the material.
        However, I do not wear it in public. I have no wish to inflict my shape upon the world, nor do I relish the inevitable ‘Macy’s parade’ comments. A pony can’t stomp on feet ALL the time, I got places to go.

    • Haribo Lector

      That would be Sir Markus Yoga; 1824-1891.

  • MeerkatsRMammals

    The only people who wear leggings are girls & ladies. Sexist much with your dress code, United? I can understand having rules for their passes, but kids should be excluded. So stupid…this isn’t the 50’s anymore. People don’t dress up like that. Have you seen how people fly? Shit…there’s people out in the supermarket in their PJ’s! C’mon.

    • It was only that one time, gees. You ever gonna let me live that one down?

      • MeerkatsRMammals

        I made REALLY poor fashion choices in the 80’s/90’s, so I have NO room to talk ;) Just an observation….United wants to have these strict rules & all. Like they’re not in the real world.

        • Jennaratrix

          Jeez, the 90s. Wide-leg denim bib overalls with a crushed velvet short-sleeved mock turtleneck and Doc Martens, with fucking butterfly clips in my hair and sparkly makeup.* Like I’m ever going to make fun of ANYONE for how they dress, ever, as long as I live.

          *Allegedly. There’s no photographic evidence, so…

          • snark-lurker

            *oh i wouldn’t be too sure about that

          • Jennaratrix

            Trust me. NO EVIDENCE.

      • snark-lurker

        hey, you scandalized an entire nation so nope, not ever, never gonna forget that fateful day which will live in infamy

    • Vincent Ricola

      Personally, I judge the elitist people at my grocery store who aren’t in their jammies or workout clothes.

    • Liberoid Ron

      I have never worn PJs to the grocery store. Partly because what I wear to bed isn’t considered suitable for public… umm, exposure.

      • I wear nothing to bed. PJs are for late night grocery shopping and or lounging about in the house with other people in it.

        • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

          I don’t even have PJs. I sleep in my undies, at most. I should buy a robe, I guess.

    • DainBramage

      What really bothers me are grown men who wear jeans or shorts to a wedding.

      • cough husband cough
        He keeps a nice pair of jeans, however

        • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

          Yeah, my redneck family all have the one pair of “dress” jeans for weddings and funerals.

        • DainBramage

          My condolences.

      • LucindathePook

        Mr. Pook’s cousins wore cut offs and tees to his dad’s funeral. They were black, though….

  • Girls, if you want to know what to wear on a plane…

    Ask an International Man who gets around a lot.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3af0ba575ac942a247ea51d2f5da90cdf62f042b4b0c844194edb38acfade7f3.jpg

  • Nockular cavity

    LeVar Burton further commented, “Dude, I have a visor that can see in X-rays. I can see right through clothing anyway.”

  • alwayspunkindrublic

    From an article I read some time back in, I think, the New Yorker (I know…”I have heard”, “many people are saying”. Sorry), the business model for the airline industry is to make basic regular ticket-price travel so miserable, excruciating, and degrading that customers will be forced to purchase luxury “extras”… like bathroom visits, seat belts, and a stewardess abuse waiver. If these stupid 10 year-olds had just ponied up 30 bucks apiece for the Leggings Rewards program, we wouldn’t be having this conversation, would we?

    • Haribo Lector

      I would pay a small amount for some of these minor extras. But I don’t know any airlines that offer a slightly-less-shitty-but-slightly-more-expensive-economy ticket. It’s usually economy or business class, and that’s your lot. Economy to business is a pretty big jump.

      • alwayspunkindrublic

        The idea, according to the article, was to offer these things on an a la carte basis, beyond the economy ticket price. Do I think I may have to pee during the flight? Better get the $20 restroom pass. Am I bringing luggage? Do I want to not have my legs crushed by the seat ahead of me? Pay up. I’m exaggerating, of course…but not much.

      • PubOption

        Air New Zealand has seat only, seat plus bag, seat plus bag plus food.

      • Rags

        Delta has something like 4 or 5 flavors now from super shitty to first.

    • Vienna Woods

      The point is that they hadn’t paid for their tickets at all- they were flying on an employee pass. If they had paid for their tickets, they could have worn leggings to their hearts’ content.

  • proudgrampa

    We are definitely NOT the greatest country in the world anymore…

    https://youtu.be/ML3qYHWRIZk

    • Proud Liberal

      I miss that show.

      • proudgrampa

        Me, too!

    • Villago Delenda Est

      What is really great about that is not the rant…it’s the explanation.

      • proudgrampa

        Precisely.

  • Anna Rompage

    “Although it is hard not to feel bad for the social media manager who was probably wearing leggings at that very moment”

    If that social media manager was a follower of the almighty Wonkette, they would likely not be wearing any pants at all, at least during the times they work from home…

  • Jennaratrix

    I keep going around in circles on this one. On the one hand, I hate leggings as pants, and don’t wear them out in public. On the other hand, who the fuck cares what I think? On the other hand, if there is a dress code, then employees should know about it and make sure everyone subject to the dress code follows it. On the other hand, “no leggings” is apparently not specified in so many words. On the other hand, when in doubt, overdress. On the other hand, the girls were 10 for fuck’s sake, and I’m a little tired of hearing what females of all ages should and shouldn’t wear due to the oversexualization of our bodies.

    As you can see, there are a lot of hands in this argument. Where I’ve come down, finally, is this: I don’t give a good goddamn what other people wear in public; I may raise an eyebrow if you’re showing off the goods, but really, what other people wear is none of my fucking business, nor anyone else’s. And I came to that conclusion after hearing my asshole father go off on a yoga pants rant on the phone one day. I don’t wanna be that guy. So wear what you want as long as it isn’t physically endangering someone else, and shut up and let people get on the damn plane. It’s not like it’s going to be dignified for anyone regardless of what people are wearing.

    • IOnlyLikeCats

      It’s not any of your business but I know of at least three legitimate reasons someone would be wearing leggings as pants. Poor, plus sized, laundry day (and needed groceries).

      • h4rr4r

        Are leggings cheaper than normal pants?
        Really?

        • chortlingdingo

          They are if you aren’t buying Lularoe or something.

          • My wedding dress cost less than a pair of Lularoe leggings. One of my friends was having a FB Lularoe party. I figured I’d help her out, so I checked out their stuff. For one thing, finding the price of their clothes took forever. When I finally found a price list, I almost fell out of my chair. I’m a bargain shopper/cheapskate, so there was no way I was paying over $100 for a pair of goddamn leggings.

          • chortlingdingo

            Whoa, someone was jacking up the prices. My sister’s friend did one, and the leggings were just $25, so I bought a pair, and was the lucky winner of a second free pair. They are ridiculously comfy, but I’d never spend $100 on a single pair of leggings.

          • Holy cats, really? I have no idea why the prices I found were so high. I just know I went into sticker shock.

        • IOnlyLikeCats

          Do you know how expensive women’s clothing are? (Comparison: leggings are $3-10 usually, so, yes.)

          • h4rr4r

            I know how much my wife spends on it. She does like the fancy stuff though.
            My shoes cost way more than hers, so we are even.

          • aureolaborealis

            Seems like anywhere you could find leggings for $3-$10, you could also find pants for $3-$10. And a brand-new bicycle for $65. And car tires. And house paint. And a bag of breakfast cereal. And an AR-15.

          • IOnlyLikeCats

            That is incorrect. You can find $10 leggings at Macy’s. Methinks you don’t know about women’s clothing.

          • aureolaborealis

            OK. Let’s go with the $3 leggings then, and see where that leaves us.

          • IOnlyLikeCats

            No, Icing doesn’t sell pants. And if you could find size 16 pants at Rue 21 before two years ago, please correct me (leggings stretch a lot more than pants).

      • Jennaratrix

        That was kind of my point, although it maybe got a little lost in all those hands – the fact that I personally don’t like leggings doesn’t make them an illegitimate or inappropriate clothing choice, but you know, I had to get there. Being judgmental comes with humanity, it seems, and we have to train ourselves out of it. It was hearing my dad be a dick about it that woke me up. I would never have *said* anything, but now I don’t even think it. Other people’s clothing, and the reason they wear it, is out of my wheelhouse, and I like it that way.

      • Haribo Lector

        Also don’t forget 4; given up on life.

      • aureolaborealis

        A couple of those reasons also mandate a tube-top at least two sizes too small.

        • IOnlyLikeCats

          And it would be a legitimate outfit and none of your business. <:

      • Ω cynmac will never surrender

        I am disabled with neurological problems and I wear them for comfort. As I will be 55 on Friday, I look at them as stretch pants. Everything I wear has stretch. Dresses, jeans, leggings, tops. I try to look neat and clean. But I could give a fuck what anyone else thinks. I dress for my own comfort and dignity.

    • Lance Thrustwell

      I don’t think there are really two sides to this argument – kids are kids and this was silly. But I totally agree with your larger point. I’m not even directly offended by male nudity, let alone female. I am only offended by proxy if I think some dude is making others (e.g. women or children) uncomfortable.

      • Haribo Lector

        Kids are kids, it’s true. But also rules are rules. If you don’t like United’s rules, you should by all means travel for free on complimentary tickets with someone else.

    • SpideySenser

      Leggings are not pants, but on little kids vs. adults I can deal with it. And a couple of years ago when everyone was pairing them with riding boots I thought to myself “Now that is so NOT a look!”

  • IOnlyLikeCats

    Why does it seem like their clothing police focused on women’s attire? And you better not expect ten year olds to come to the airport wearing suits. This entire thing is insane but I’m going to use it as an excuse to remind everyone not to police other people’s clothing (unless they’re on a job and you are their boss or something). If you don’t think leggings are pants, don’t wear leggings as pants.

    • Vagenda of Rebel Scum

      Having an employee show up in inappropriate attire sucks, especially if you work in a place that doesn’t have a dress code. Flip flops, camel toes, guys with hygiene issues, wearing badly wrinkled clothes to work, shoes coated in mud, and much more. And this in a government agency where people regularly met with the public.
      Try writing and enforcing a dress code in an era where you can no longer say ” jackets and ties for men, and professional attire for women (and somehow everyone knows what that is)”. Not that I want to go back to that, it was just simpler.

  • Oblios_Cap

    Making America Grate Again, one pair of leggings at a time.

  • Crank Tango

    That’s not Gigi, that’s Misnomer.

  • Crystalclear12
    • Proud Liberal

      Doesn’t he understand that informing a target of a criminal investigation of facts in the investigation is called aiding and abetting and obstruction of justice?

      • Liberoid Ron

        No.

        • Proud Liberal

          I hope the FBI will inform him soon.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      He’s a Rethuglican. He was thinking about saving his own skin and future employment possibilities. Too bad he’ll have to inform future employers of his status as a convicted felon.

    • Vagenda of Rebel Scum

      He is not the sharpest tool in the drawer in case anybody missed it.

      • Crystalclear12

        He is the spoon of knives.

        • Villago Delenda Est

          A dull spoon. Unsuitable for votes in these parts.

    • Thinking? lolz

  • h4rr4r

    If I can get free tickets I would wear nothing but leggings on the flight.

    Oh wait, United. They were better off being denied.
    Seriously folks, it is always worth the couple bucks to avoid United.

    • UncleTravelingMatt

      I flew out of Seattle on United a lot to either Chi or DC in the mid-90s. I had a streak going once where United lost my luggage on 7 consecutive flights.

  • Villago Delenda Est

    Exqueeze me, but how the hell is anyone to know by just looking at a passenger if they are “representing” United as a pass person or a paying customer? Would United behave this way to someone paying full freight? This entire situation is utterly absurd, and this is an unforced error on United’s part. They’re just being dicks toward “pass” passengers because they have some power to do so.

    Fucking assholes on power trips. Plague on our nation.

    • Alan

      People talk.

  • UncleTravelingMatt

    I thought leggings were what 10 year-old girls generally wore for pants.

    • Carpe Vagenda

      They’re super popular with pre-pubescent girls (and their parents) because they don’t restrict their range of motion like jeans but they also don’t encourage them to be less active to protect their crotches.

    • Liberoid Ron

      Mine did at that age, when they were too young to REALLY need pockets.

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      My daughter loved overalls the most. We bought most of her clothes in the boys department. She was rough on clothes being a tomboy and athletic.

  • WotsAllThisThen

    Pants on a Plane, one of Samuel L Jackson’s lesser known works.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      “There are motherfucking leggings on this motherfucking plane!”

      • Jocelyndmcclellan

        Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours & have longer with friends and family! !dg386c:
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        !dg386c:
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    • Wild Cat

      Self-genocidal NR Token Ex-PauletteTwink Armond White used to refer to Samuel L. Jackson as a “walking mugshot.”

      Guess we know who didn’t sleep with whom . . .

    • JesusWasAHippie

      A follow up to an even lesser known lesser known work, Pants On The Ground.

      http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/035/704/19553_251044573722_588688722_3516171_3055245_n.jpg

  • fawkedifiknow

    I just spent most of a day in airports from Washington D. C. to Chicago. I wasn’t doing a survey, or counting, but my guess is that more women under the age of 35 were wearing leggings than not.

  • Martini Ambassador 🍸

    There is, in my opinion, such a thing as leggings that are just too revealing (recall the Lululemon scandal). So, I guess I can understand that United has rules that apply to special passes and deems *all* leggings too informal, because it’s hard to draw the line at when things are too sheer.

    THAT BEING SAID…

    This is dumb, and United was being dumb. Particularly because these are younger kids we are talking about, and policing that is kind of silly, especially if they were not wearing the too-sheer kind as the tweeting observer indicated. The gate crew could have noted the rule, asked that the kids comply next time, and let them on. Instead they made a big PR nightmare for themselves, and we’ll probably end up with a bunch of redonkulous and overly-complicated rules about the “right” kinds of leggings and tights, etc.

  • Angela Ruzzo

    I do not wear leggings, because I am 60 years old. The number of 60-yr-old women who look good in leggings is very small, and limited to celebrity anorexics and Wal-Mart shoppers. However, I remember being 14 years old and wearing a halter top (shocking!) in 1970 when I was invited to a “group date” at a bowling alley. Yes, I said a bowling alley. That’s what we did in 1970 because there was nowhere else to go in my town, not even a mall. Now, my mother would not have let me leave the house in a halter top (given to me by my older sister who couldn’t wear it, as she wore a 38EE bra), even though I had a figure like a bean pole, so I put a t-shirt over it, which I took off when I got to the bowling alley. Mom never noticed.

    If I were 14 years old today I would be wearing leggings and a midriff-exposing top, just like all the other 14-yr-olds, and I would look normal. Whether my mother would let me out of the house dressed like that is a different story, and is irrelevant, because she is dead.

    I have sat on airplanes next to people who were dressed like escapees from a homeless shelter. What the fuck is wrong with leggings?

    • Little Doll

      Gawd, what’s wrong with where you grew up? I mean, no roller rink? Sheesh.

      Then again, my town only had the bowling alley too. Movie theater? Thirty miles away. Roller rink? Fifteen miles away. Gawd, we didn’t even have video games yet. How did we survive?

      • Ω cynmac will never surrender

        Books and TV. Playing outside. Unsupervised. We also walked to school, unsupervised. My parents moved to the ass-end of the county, so it was 10 miles to the nearest McDonald’s. My brother loved me much more after I got my driver’s license and we went everywhere. Until I left for college.

      • aureolaborealis

        I came here to say something about roller rinks.

      • Angela Ruzzo

        We held a lot of single-sex sleep-overs, and fantasized about being old enough to drive a car.

        A pair of 12- and 13-yr kids in my neighborhood who each have a 60″ TV with 400 channels, a computer with high-speed internet, an XBox, an iPad and a Smart Phone (but who don’t own a single book), decided they would spray paint several houses last Friday afternoon in broad daylight. When caught and asked why they did it, they said they were “bored.” Both sets of parents have now grounded them for a month, which means they have to stay in their houses after school, alongside the TV, the computer, the XBox, the iPad and the SmartPhone. Some grounding! I suggested to one parent that they take away the cell phones for a month. He was absolutely shocked!!!!

        • Little Doll

          I love technology. I love my cell phone. BUT, I have to say, I’m glad I grew up in the 1960s/1970s.

          One of my son’s friends was staying with us for awhile a couple of years ago. Our internet went out. After an hour I was ready to slap him about the face and neck. He was just frantic! Wandered from my room back to the living room, back to my room. He didn’t know what to do with himself without a screen to stare at.

          • Angela Ruzzo

            My 38-yr-old niece came to visit last year. Her cell phone never left her hand for 3 days, she even took it to the bathroom with her. She kept checking for messages and replying to texts while we were talking or eating or watching a movie. I wanted to slap her about the face and neck, as you say. Next time she wants to visit, I will tell her cell phones are banned in my house. I don’t expect I will see her again.

          • SpideySenser

            Jesus, poor neurotic kid.

        • SpideySenser

          Kids love being grounded and sent to their rooms. That’s where all the tech gear is.

    • Vienna Woods

      Hell, I’m 56 and I almost exclusively wear leggings and yoga pants, although for public forays I always wear tops that cover the crotch. No one complains, and I’m certainly not anorexic. And damn they’re more comfortable than jeans!

      • Angela Ruzzo

        I find them very uncomfortable. I like loose pants – they are easier to get in and out of in the bathroom. This might have a psychological origin, because when I was young, girls weren’t allowed to wear pants to school, so in cold winter weather we wore heavy, knitted wool tights to keep our legs warm, and they were itchy and scratchy and bagged at the knees. Leggings remind me of tights.

  • Haribo Lector

    I’m going to say that Jonathan from United’s PR department probably knows more than Gigi Hadid about United’s dress codes though, so he wins that one. This wasn’t an asshole on a power trip; this was a frontline low-paying grunt doing what the rules say because not doing what the rules say is how you end up as a no-paying ex-grunt.

    • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

      In right-to-work America that’s a fair point, but said low-paying grunt can just ask around if they actually even enforce that policy anymore. Much in the same way cops ask each other if they still enforce the ordinance about shooting at non-whale sea creatures from a moving car (don’t ever change, California).

      • Easy fix anyway. Says lycra or spandex- Wear cotton leggings instead.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      The power tripper isn’t the guy who enforces the rules, it’s the guy who makes the rules. The rules are stupid on their face because unless the “pass” passenger is wearing an orange hat that says “I’m representing United Airlines!” no one will know they’re a “pass” passenger but the United Airlines employees on the plane, who are in uniform already officially being United Airlines representatives.

      If there’s a dress code to make the paying customers comfortable, it applies to everyone on the plane regardless of how they got a seat on the plane. People used to “dress up” to fly, back in ancient times when public dress rules were much less casual than they are now. Men walking around hatless were unheard of until JFK broke the rules and caused the fashion to change.

  • Oblios_Cap

    We want people to be comfortable when they travel as long as it’s neat and in good taste for that environment.”

    I thought that the new administration said we don’t have to care about the environment anymore.

    • Proud Liberal

      Executive Order cutting Obama’s clean air initiative will be signed tomorrow.

    • Little Doll

      And as long as they paid full price for their ticket.

  • C4TWOMAN

    Meanwhile the dumpster fire at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave burns…
    Way to give us perspective, United!

  • jowgajen

    I think it’s silly that United put two kids off the plane who had clothes on their body. However, I don’t see how this is a blow-up-top-line-of-the-news-feed-type story. They have an outdated policy, small Twitter fight ensues. That’s enough, find some car crashes to report on people.

    • I personally think all journalists should stick to finding lost airplanes and or worrying about the fate of famous couples.

  • Lizzietish81

    OT: Why is it so hot in this office? Christ I would get more done if this place wasn’t so overheated and stuffy.

    • Liberal conspiracy to make us take off all our clothing and get all promiscuous.
      OR, your peeps have not de-winterized the HVAC as yet.

      • Lance Thrustwell

        It’s gettin’ hot in hurrr….

    • timpundit

      Let me guess, you are also in a hermetically sealed modern building where you cannot open the windows and the indoor temperature is pre-set by the Home Office that is located in a completely different climate.

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      Here in Atlanta, on my last contract, I had the best supervisor, someone I had known since the 90’s. In 2010, we started having the 100 degree days in May on the regular. Our uniform was Dress Bra Panties or DBP for short. Until my supervisor confessed to going commando many days. I am just glad for the death of pantyhose. I have a few pairs for wearing to formal events like funerals.

    • Historicat

      There are only two office settings – overheated and stuffy or bone-chilling freezer. Nothing else is possible.

  • Indivisible Snark Tank

    Just out of curiosity, and playing devil’s advocate for a second…

    Would you have the same position if it was a guy in Richard Simmons-length short shorts?

    • Yes.
      AND also if it was a guy in baggy shorts and stuff.
      Because policing people’s clothing is fucking fascist.
      So, there is that, though the two (full growed dude in short shorts versus lil girls in leggings) are hardly comparable.
      Might snicker about said dude, however.

    • MynameisBlarney
      • Jennifer R

        Ok my ass hangs out way less than that.

        • Villago Delenda Est

          Probably a lot more curvy and less hairy, I’d think.

        • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

          I have one pair that shows some cheek, buuuuut not like ^.

          XD

          • Jennifer R

            Yeah I don’t know what the style SHOULD look like, but I am pretty sure it isn’t that.

      • timpundit

        Thank the internet there is no pic from the front.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      If Richard Simmons is paying full freight for the ride, United wouldn’t give a flying fuck. Or a taxiing fuck.

    • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

      My position is that I’d point and laugh, make a John Stockton joke, and might take a picture for the interwebz. And that’d be about it.

      • Ω cynmac will never surrender

        10 points to Ravensclaw for the mention of John Stockton, famously the last man in the NBA to continue to wear nut-huggers after Micheal Jordan brought in appropriate pants.

    • Little Doll

      Their dad was wearing shorts. They didn’t make him change.

      • Greg

        Because the dress code allows shorts and not leggings.

    • Me The People

      I don’t accept United’s premise that girls wearing leggings is even arguably an example of ‘inappropriate’.

      The Richard Simmons guy’s case is at least arguable. I think there is a reasonable argument that we should insist on a certain level of coverage for travelling long distance with close proximity to strangers. We don’t know the hygeine level/amount of sweating etc for a given passenger, so a general rule about adults not wearing shorts/being topless etc on the plane would seem to have a rationale that sane people could possibly understand, in contrast to the case in question.

  • Shoto

    First it’s leggings, then it’s Communism! Wake up, Sheeplez!!!

  • Lizzietish81
    • tehbaddr

      Jeggings!

  • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

    When Ivanka stops selling leggings on her website, I’ll stop wearing them. And just why did the Russian Puppet give his “favorite” (if you know what I mean) daughter a Russian name? Just askin’.

    Edit: I have no idea if she sells them on her website. Just figured that if there was a buck to be made, she’d be on it.

    • Pretty sure the wives got to name the girl children.
      Makes sense. Would sure explain Donald Jr, Eric and Barron

      • Villago Delenda Est

        There are no rational explanations of any type for Uday and Qusay, regarding anything.

        Barron may have a chance of avoiding that sad fate.

      • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

        At first I thought he sold the naming rights to all of his children. Now I think you are correct.

        • Villago Delenda Est

          “Donald Trump Jr., brought to you by the Trump Taj Mahal!”
          “Eric Trump, brought to you by Trump University!”
          “Ivanka Trump, brought to you by Trump Steaks…what a piece of meat!”

  • mailman27

    To paraphrase Slim Pickens, I’ve been to a state fair and two rodeos and that’s the stupidest thing I ever heard.

  • Manhattan123

    In good news, passengers who got to board were able to score a stale plastic-wrapped cheese & cracker platter and a beer for only $12.00

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      It’s amazing to me that people don’t realize that they can bring on their own snacks. One evening, I was flying standby on an earlier flight than I had booked, so I sashayed to the TGIF on the concourse and got the amazing large salad with strawberries to go. Made the flight, was eating my salad as the dude in the next seat was trying to masticate the ice cold stomach bomb sub sandwich. He was envious but all it takes is a little planning.

  • wait! what?

    #spanxsgate

  • Kakkeltje

    What bugs me about this story is that the family themselves are not the ones that tweeted this. They had free tickets and apparently those came with special clothing requirements. Maybe they were not aware of that. I don’t really know how the discussion at the gate went.

    The problem I have is that a bystander decided to make his her cause and tweeted about this, and now a family that just wanted a holiday suddenly finds itself in the middle of this media madness.
    Personally I would like to decide for myself if a disagreement with a company is important enough to go public with. I would definitely not appreciate being thrown into a media storm by a well meaning busybody who happens to be near.

    • I do not think the family or families were doxxed or brought into anything.
      As it is, employee, company, witness. That be about it.
      The poor families of course had to have the humiliation of being pulled out of line and told their 10 year old dressed like a slut, tho. So there is that!

    • Villago Delenda Est

      A well meaning busybody who apparently could not understand why this family was publically humiliated in this way.

      This is not Gladys Kravitz.

  • Mavenmaven

    A few texts suggesting that United was enforcing Sharia laws of modesty should put an end to this idiocy.

    • Vagenda of Rebel Scum

      Funny you should say that0- the young woman sitting on the plane next to me yesterday was wearing a head scarf- and leggings.

  • MynameisBlarney
    • Jennifer R

      Animals are helpful for anxiety and stress conditions.

      • MynameisBlarney

        Indeed they are.
        But none are as helpful as mah puppeh!

      • AJ Milne

        I’m pretty sure one of my cats views me as her emotional support human.

    • wait! what?

      Like in the Carrie Fisher documentary. Her brother’s wife had what she called a service rooster.

      • bupkus23

        Aren’t they all? ( I mean, aren’t all roosters only useful to service the hens? )

  • An Outhouse for the Resistance

    What next United Airlines? requiring burkas? UA is implementing sharia law in ‘Murica! BOYCOTT!

  • wait! what?

    The Internet for wonkette broke, again…

    {# The script below injects the embed bootloader and then modifies CSP rules to disallow inline scripts while keeping the rest of the rules defined automatically by headers intact with a very broad `https:` rule. Keep in mind that this still forces the page to load all scripts via HTTPS. #}

    • tomamitai

      So NOW they allow comments?

      • Villago Delenda Est

        I blame Obama.

        • Ω cynmac will never surrender

          “The Black Guy”

      • wait! what?

        Depends.

        Are you wearing leggings?

      • Mehmeisterjr

        That would be an outrageous break with tradition.

      • Ill-Advised

        “I see everything twice!”

        “Get up and run, dammit! Everybody get up and run!”

  • Alan

    Sorry guys, the airline, just like any business, has a right to impose a dress code when they give out free tickets to employees.

    • And we have the right to ridicule them for singling out children and telling them they were not dressed appropriately :)

      • Alan

        Sure, but that’s an interpretation of what happened.

    • Villago Delenda Est

      Well, certainly. However, the enforcement seems to be…um…inequitable. Dad was wearing shorts. EXPOSING FLESH.

      Also, too, as I’ve pointed out before, how is any passenger to know that someone next to them is flying space-A for free as an employee or relative of an employee? How is United’s public image impacted if you don’t know? In this case, being assholish about the dress code is backfiring on them bigly, hugely.

      • Alan

        I’m sure they did it because they had a problem in the past and it’s way easier to just ban a particular piece of attire than to do inspections of individuals that would certainly result in a lawsuit. Probably they had some employee board with her genitals exposed through her leggings and just decided no leggings. As long as the policy is enforced uniformly it’s legal. I’m sure that’s what they were going for.

    • Jennifer R

      And the entire internet still has the right to tell them that their rules can get fucked. Airlines piss money like a drunk with a saxophone, any bad news can be enough to bankrupt one of them again.

    • shivaskeeper

      I have to agree as far as it is their right to impose a dress code for free employee tickets. However this is the result of not actually applying a functioning brain before applying a policy.

      There is a way to handle a situation like this and this was not that way.

    • Boscoe

      And everyone has the right to tell united they suck donkey balls on twitter. FREEDOMZ!!!1!

      • Ω cynmac will never surrender

        My favorite part of the exchange was when @United asked @Shannon if she were talking to the kids affected. My answer would have been “mind your business”.

    • texcynical

      Nice strawman you constructed there. The question isn’t whether they can. The question is whether they should.

      • Alan

        You realize that’s not what strawman means? Actually, I think you’re just trying to be ironic.

        • natoslug

          Black fly in your chardonnay ironic, deliberately contrary from what is expected ironic, or heavy metal object made of iron with pointy bits on it (and accompanying bloodstains and questionable chunks of what might be scalp) ironic?

          • Alan

            No, that would be the incorrectly claiming that someone could actually commit a logical fallacy for merely stating a fact while simultaneously admitting that it is only a normative discussion in the first place kind of irony.

    • birdbrain53

      Actually the tickets are not free. The employee pays the tax on the ticket if it is on the employee’s airline. If there is a reciprocal agreement between 2 airlines, and the employee flys on the other airline, the employee gets a big discount on the fare.

      • Alan

        Someone has to pay the tax, the ticket was free.

    • Can 10 year olds really be considered employees?

      • Latverian Diplomat

        If kids “work for” their parents, and if “work for” is a transitive relation, then yes? :-)

        • Do kids work for their parents? Because I’m pretty sure my kids think it’s the other way around.

          • Latverian Diplomat

            Thus, the quotes around work for, as well as the ? at the end.

      • Alan

        No.

  • gamera23

    I agree, Robyn.

    But, okay, guys. Okay, um, fellas. I implore you not to be smartasses and board my plane wearing yoga leggings. Please.

    • timpundit

      No deal.

    • HazooToo

      I have exactly zero pairs of jeans and one pair of trousers. I guarantee if I’m wearing leggings, it’s not to be a smartass.

      • DrPills

        Too many of us are missing the point. You can wear anything you care to. If you want to ride on a space available free ticket, you have to follow the rules of the airline. Too many of us are over reacting. .

        • bupkus23

          I have no real reaction, except – Why the fuck does anyone think “representing the company” is a perfectly fine excuse?

          Even for a free ticket, this type of micromanaging of their image strikes me as a perfect reason to NEVER give them MY money.

          • DrPills

            You may have a hard time spending your free ticket almost all airlines have this requirement. Where do they sit? Often times it is First Class

        • HazooToo

          Where do these ticket holders sit? Is there any clear difference between a pass holder and a person with a normal ticket? Can you tell just by looking at them that they supposedly represent the airline? If not, then it doesn’t matter what they wear, and they shouldn’t have the policy at all. It’s a stupid policy, and mocking them for being stupid isn’t over-reacting.

          • DrPills

            Often times it is in first class. I just came back from Barcelona and I sat in first class with a giant smile on my face. Seems to me it is a very easy thing to fix. I give the airlione a reasonable well dressed guy for a free ticket. I’m very OK with it

          • HazooToo

            Still, even in first class, there’s no telling who used what ticket to board the plane. And you can see the model’s picture in the above article, I’m pretty sure she’s familiar with flying first class, leggings or no. Besides that, these are 10 year olds who got caught up in this. Who expects a child to dress professionally? What even IS that, for kids? It was stupid.

  • House0fTheBlueLights

    Man, don’t tell them about what we [don’t] wear around here.

  • Villago Delenda Est

    /raises hand

    I lived for YEARS in an organization that dictated in very small detail my appearance every single day. The thing was, everyone in the organization knew the rules, and they were applied equitably across the board.

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      Thankfully, I started working in the telecom industry in 1989. The telephone companies were an early adopter of “business casual”, primarily because the staff is not “customer facing”. When you are on the phone, nobody can see your pants.

      • chortlingdingo

        A lot of the tech industry is like that too. Where I work, if you see someone dressed in business attire, they’re either in for an interview, or they’re meeting a client face-to-face. Everyone else is in jeans, flip-flops, t-shirts. Super casual.

  • Debbies are like taco trucks

    Actually, leggings seem like appropriate choices for 10-year old girls to wear for a plane trip; much more comfy than jeans, less revealing or “fiddly” than dresses or skirts.
    OMG, I am coming home from Spain tomorrow, and my planned outfit is leggings & a sweater (as it was for the trip here). I feel like such a rebel now!

  • The Librarian

    First off, if you have to wear pants, leggings are the next best thing to no pants. Second, being 10 years old should not require one to “represent the company”, even with a special pass. Another reason to hate United, besides the other gazillion reasons.

  • wait! what?

    Bally Total Fitness gyms wouldn’t allow members to wear tank tops in their facilities until the early 90s even though their TV ads showed people working out in their gym’s with tank tops.

  • birdbrain53

    My dad worked for United and we flew as pass passengers many times. My father wore a suit, my mother a dress, and us children in sunday best. It was the dress code and we were representing the airline when we flew. Now that I pay my own way I dress more casually.

    Standby employees are listed at the gate as employees of an airline. And there is a dress code for the employee and their families. It is the responsibility of the adults to make sure their children follow the dress code. Paying passengers can know because the Standby Passengers are called by name to the gate to check in before boarding, and called by name to board after paying passengers have boarded. If there are seats available.

    • DrPills

      My son is a Captain for one of the majors. I fly frequently.. Once you enter your info on the stand-by list, You’ll get an e-mail with the clothing requirements. These kids or parents just didn’t pay attention. Frankly flying used to be so much more. Now it isn’t unusual to see a guy in dirty

      • chortlingdingo

        I think perhaps part of the reason people don’t dress up on airplanes anymore is because there’s just no space. It’s too cramped and uncomfortable to wear formal clothes unless you can afford to fly first class.

        • DrPills

          I wish that were true. Used to be that you’d get on an airplane and every guy on the plane would be wearing a suit. The only places men wear suits today is to the courthouse and the Funeral Home

          • chortlingdingo

            Men do look awfully snazzy in a suit.*

            *a well-tailored suit

  • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

    Let me just state for the record that I despise the Women’s Clothing Fashion Police. I don’t give a fuck if you don’t like leggings, I don’t want to hear it if you don’t like *my* leggings, and I am *really* tired of being asked “aren’t you cold” when I am wearing coat, hat, scarf, gloves, boots, skirt, and yes: leggings.

    • chortlingdingo

      And if you really are cold, there is such a thing as fleece-lined leggings, which are pretty toasty.

      The winter trend I never understood was in the mid-2000s at my university out in West Texas where it did snow, occasionally. I saw so many girls wearing North Face jackets, Ugg boots, and those itty bitty volleyball shorts. In the snow.

      • Anna Elizabeth, Tifosi Suprema

        Honestly, I wear shorts in the Winter quite a bit. My legs don’t get cold the way my torso does – and my legs are prettier than my face, and I like to show them – so I’ll do Moto jacket and shorts. I walk everywhere – no car – so if it isn’t windy, I have no problem.

        Except all the people that ask me “aren’t you cold?” SRSLY, every fucking day in my old neighborhood. If I wore shorts and it was not 70F, I heard it. I heard it from guys that were in shorts!

  • Mehmeisterjr

    This incident confirms my long-held opinion that people who write and enforce dress codes are recruited from the clueless class.

    Back when I was in high school, mumbledy-mumble years ago (OK, OK it was fifty years ago. Fifty. Years. Ago, dammit. Now are you satisfied?) the dress code was dead-set against culottes, even though it was obvious to me and every other red-blooded American boy, that culottes were much less revealing than the alternatives.

    I noticed things like that in those days. And in these days.

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      Back in the olden days, we weren’t allowed to wear sundresses with bare shoulders. We had to wear a t-shirt with our dresses, because bare shoulders turn teenage boys on oh so much. Also we had a “fingertip” rule on skirt and shorts length – could not be shorter than your fingertips reached down your leg. I learned quickly that that is a 19-inch skirt, which is also the most flattering, hitting me right at the knee. Did not work as a testosterone deterrent.

      • JustDon’tSayMicrowave

        In high school, there is no such thing as a testosterone deterrent. I was drunk on the stuff, FFS.

      • The shoulder thing is still happening in schools. Girls in spaghetti straps being thrown out of classrooms because it’s apparently easier to disrupt their education than to teach boys not to stare. (And they stare anyway.)

        • chortlingdingo

          The fingertip rule is still a thing too. Or at least it was ten years ago.

      • M.E. Lawrence

        I kind of favor school uniforms for that reason; fewer rules involved, less expensive for the parents, the girls feel all rebellious rolling up their skirt waistbands, and then everyone can go wild on Casual Friday.

        (Somewhat O,T,: Just remember, you young punks, we SoCal females had to wear skirts–not trousers, not jeans, bloody skirts–to public school until the late ’60s.)

        • Ω cynmac will never surrender

          Private school in GA in 1974, we were allowed to wear pants – navy blue double knit pants with matching vests. Think leisure suits for girls. I skipped it.

      • calliecallie

        Finger tip rule. That was my dad’s rule for my high school attire. I would not wear a top over leggings to finger tip length these days! To think I wore skirts like that, with hose and heels. OMG. I don’t know how those boys survived it. Back in the day, I ran track, and had legs that did not quit. (Much, much later I learned from a fellow student that the boys in the senior lounge had voted me “best legs” senior year. It would have been nice to know that then!)

      • Lark_in_the_AM

        Yep, still happening, Cyn. My daughter just flips out when the dress code gets mentioned, as it is super sexist, with all kinds of restrictions on what the girls can wear, but the boys dress code consists of “no sagging” and “no hats, including baseball caps, worn indoors”. She always asks why only girls have to cater to the hormones of the boys, instead of the boys being told to keep eyes and hands to self. I wish I had an answer that would budge the school board, but she’s a senior, so she is looking forward to wearing her sundresses to college classes in August. 😀

    • unclejeems

      Mmm. I’ve always favored the sans-cullottes myself.

  • This is so stupid. Why do men always insist on policing what women wear? It’s none of their GD business.

    • Maree Martin

      “Mr. Guerin said pass travelers are “representing” the company and as
      such are not allowed to wear Lycra and spandex leggings, tattered or
      ripped jeans, midriff shirts, flip-flops or any article of clothing that
      shows their undergarments.”

      The tattered or ripped jeans, flip flops and clothing that shows undergarments…and who knows maybe even the spandex and midriff shirts would be restrictions for men as well as women. This isn’t sexism, it’s just stupidism. Nobody would know a passenger is a relative of a company employee and traveling for free.

      • Rager

        Actually, they do know. Comes right up on the screen when you check in. Prints on your boarding pass.

        • Dodgerdog1

          Actually, I feel certain Maree Martin was referring to other passengers not knowing.

  • KnaveOfSwords

    “We find these children far too sexy to allow them to represent us.” – totally non-creepy United spokes-(alleged-)person

  • tehbaddr

    Tell me more about this “crotching out”.

  • How does the Wonkette “no pants” policy account for leggings? I feel like that may be a grey area…

  • anon_the_great

    From other accounts I read the story as recited here is at best incomplete. The airline was dictating a dress code to pair couple of adult women who were flying on the airline’s tab, not a 10 year old. If you want to jet around in your labia-enhancing Luluemons, you buy an effin ticket like other ‘leggings’ wearers and the airline won’t say shit about your questionable fashion choices.

    And now for my Olds kvetch. Fer Christ sake put some fucking pants on! I don’t saunter around in public with my testicles and penis and ass on conspicuous display for reasons ranging from aesthetic to criminal. Is it too much to ask for the same consideration?

    • Ω cynmac will never surrender

      I must say too, stockings are not leggings. I always wear a tunic top that covers my ass, as God intended. Now, if you wanted to saunter arounf in bike shorts, like many men I see, that is your right. Although I don’t want to see your moose knuckle.

    • Lark_in_the_AM

      Nope, not adult women. Pre-teen and young teen. Also, see Robyn’s inquiry in the article above: According to Shannon Watts, who witnessed the event, the girls were appropriately covered up (we asked if they were just “crotching out” all over the place! she said no!).

      So, it sounds as if they were dressed entirely appropriately for normal passengers. I wear my yoga pants on flights all the time, though with a tunic top or sweater, because even at 5’1″, I find airline seating ridiculously uncomfortable. Guess I’ll be flying more Southwest flights to register my disapproval with United’s misogynistic policy (the man flying with the girls, ostensibly their father, was wearing shorts, so showing knobby, hairy knees is apparently not an offense to the dignity of the company).

      • Greg

        Sorry, Southwest has the same dress code for pass riders. All of the airlines do. If you want to truly take a stand, don’t fly anymore.

  • Ω cynmac will never surrender

    Confession – I love yoga pants, but the long ones with flared bottoms. If I went to get on a plane in my favorite black yoga pants, I’d cut a bitch. That is all.

  • puredog

    When I read this story initially, the reporting was that the girls, or at least one of them, were/was 14, not 10. Which might make a small difference, depending.

    • Rachel Book Harlot

      It shouldn’t, though. A 14-year-old girl is still a child.

  • redarmyzombie

    “Leggings for everyone, period!”

    Just so long as this doesn’t get in the way of my no pants policy…

  • natoslug

    I’m still pissed that they made me where pants when I flew. My work attire is bottomless, as should be my flight attire, dammit!

  • Bitter Scribe

    Seriously? There was someone at that airport who had nothing better to do than worry about what a couple of 10-year-old girls were wearing?

    • DrPills

      No you are, by the rules, inspected. A while back one airline would not let employee stand by wearing denim and ride in first class. I was at the gate counter and the ticket agent asked me to step back a little so she could see my pants.

      Is all of this stupid or silly. Certainly if you think so, but I love the free ticket and have no problem with it. The rules are more than well known and if someone feels put upon, buy a ticket

      • Bitter Scribe

        Those kids were not employees.

        • DrPills

          No, but they were using employee standby. My guess if it were their Mom that was the employee she’d know the rules. My guess a neighbor or their aunt supplied the tickets. And I don’t know who brought them too the air[port. Real tough for people to follow the rules.

          • Lark_in_the_AM

            The point is – there should not be this sort of rule. It is NOT 1952. No one fucking cares what anyone else is wearing, and not a soul on the plane who is not a United employee knows the provenance of the tickets used by those 10 year old girls, so they were in no way “representing” United Airlines. I sure hope the hue and cry makes the airline think thrice about the existence of rules directed at (mostly) girls and women on Pass tickets.

          • DrPills

            Hey, I don’t want to feud with you. You can believe want you like. I know this stuff and I like the free rides. What I don’t understand, why don’t you let United and just about all the other airlines run their airline as they like? When I was 10 I knew the rules and knew the consequences if I didn’t follow the rules.

          • Lark_in_the_AM

            You’ve still missed the point. :-)
            Not feuding, just pointing out that the rule makes no sense, and even if it did, the rule doesn’t specifically state that leggings on little girls aren’t allowed. The idea that pass passengers are representing the airline when no one but the gate agent knows they’re flying on a pass is ridiculous. But, gotta keep the little girls (but not their dad, who was wearing shorts) in line.

          • DrPills

            All airlines do the same thing. Is it logical, maybe not, but that is how they do business. Next time you’re flying watch the last 5 or so passengers. They are pass riders.and no leggings.

        • DrPills

          But they were flying on employee tickets.

          Do you believe people shouldn’t play by the rules, even if you don’t like the rule?

  • Rager

    Dad was a pilot. We had to do the dress code thing. EVERY DAMN FLIGHT. Every try to get a five-year old boy to wear a suit and tie for four hours? (the rules are not as awful now as they were) It matters because you’re flying with all your mom or dad’s co-workers, and some of them may hold grudges or whatever and rat your parents out to management. I feel really bad for the parents of these girls because it IS going to be a problem with their management, and because it went public, even the C-suite will get involved. Someone/some people will lose their jobs. Yes, it is utterly stupid. Welcome to America.

  • aureolaborealis

    A long-standing mystery in my life has been resolved by this. I traveled for a post-9/11 family emergency, across the country needed multiple connecting flights. Presumably because I was male and traveling alone, and because I had purchased the ticket within some amount of time of my departure, I was pulled out of every security line for extra-special attention from highly competent TSA heroes.
    What extra bit of information makes this interesting, you ask? I had forgotten a knife in an external web pocket of my carry-on bag (which I also used for day-hikes). This was not noticed by anyone at any point until I was home and unpacking. It all makes sense now; they were on high alert, looking for the real danger to America: leggings.

  • Marr

    Leggings are a total staple clothing of any female in Colorado. In many cases they aren’t​ the tissue paper thin “yoga pants” but frabocs with substance to provide warmth. It is easy to see why someone flying from Denver wouldn’t think twice about their appropriateness in almost any setting.

    Just to take the other side for a moment: as a former 10 year old, quite often they read everything like tickets and know the rules and try to see what they can get away with.

    • H0mer0

      what is this “reading” you speak of?

  • M.E. Lawrence

    Wait a minute–these were 10-year-olds? Really? Not teenagers in torn black-lace leggings and corselets and 6-inch heels, but little girls in leggings? Bloody hell.

  • whitroth

    10 yr old girls? So, the staff that refused to let them on is hot for pre-teens?

  • It’s a good thing we never fly. I was just thinking that my 10-year old darn near lives in leggings and other stretchy pants-things. She says jeans are too stiff.

  • Hither and Yawn

    Uh, free ticket? The airline doesn’t have to offer this benefit to anyone, much less relatives/guests of employees.

    Ms. Watts may have witnessed the entire situation and offered her own opinion of their attire, but she doesn’t work for United.

  • Grokenstein

    The employee who provided the passes is going to catch hell over all this (which you can be sure is coded in the pass policy) but hey, enjoy your public foot-stomp of phony outrage, everybody.

    • Gregory Brown

      It is delicious, and my feet feel invigorated from all the stomping, thank you very much.

  • Michael Loraine

    What century is this again? And the reason for “dress codes” is what?

    Puritans! Feh!

    • andreamd

      I told a young woman about public school dress codes in the 1960’s- and she was shocked. I am shocked that leggings are an issue now.

  • Steko

    Fake outrage, my wife works for the airlines and on multiple occasions when flying with United I’ve been asked to change to comply with the standby dress code. It’s spelled out very clearly that employees who give people passes need to make them aware of the dress code.

  • laineypc

    At our elementary school in WA that is all the girls wear. Except the jock girls, who wear running leggings, whatever those are called. My daughter is the weird one who wears jeans sometimes.

  • Celtic_Gnome

    When I was a boy, we wore pants on aeroplanes, and we liked it!

    • Gregory Brown

      What are these “pants” you speak of?

  • laineypc

    As silly as this is, it’s another case of social media amplifying issues and humiliating people that perhaps don’t quite deserve THAT level of exposure and condemnation. JMO.

    • Hither and Yawn

      Definitely. The woman who started this failed to get the full story before her tweeting outrage kicked in.

  • Shanzgood 🥓

    On the same ticket, a 10yo boy would probably have been rejected for wearing sweat pants.

    I hate body shaming but this is a dress code thing. Yes, I know the dad was allowed to board wearing shorts. The rest probably would have as well.

    • Rejecting a kid for wearing sweat pants would have been stupid too. Flying is difficult and uncomfortable enough, especially for kids. Why shouldn’t they dress comfortably? Who the hell cares what children are wearing on a plane, as long as they aren’t disrupting the flight?

      • Shanzgood 🥓

        I agree. If the dress code was a jacket and tie for all the male passengers, I expect they would have rejected a boy of any age without them and it would still be stupid. I don’t like the sexism angle here.

        • Gregory Brown

          I remember the jacket-and-tie days, albeit vaguely, and the people who fly now would have been barred from entering the plane then, and the authorities would have been summoned to deal with the riffraff, ne’er-do-wells and hoboes who were attempting to board.

  • foog

    Why make shit up? The girls were teenagers, not ten-year-olds. Gigi Hadid as a paying customer (and not an employee/family passholder that is subject to and perfectly aware of the dress code) can wear all the leggings she wants. And, here’s the kicker, in light of the above facts it was still an egregious and idiotic thing for United to do.

    But your bullshittery only serves to give idiots shiny baubles with which to distract themselves in the mistaken belief that finding a detail or two that you got wrong somehow makes what United did all OK. How about not embellishing the story and letting it stand as is?

    • Serai 1
    • Carpe Vagenda

      One was ten and two were teens. Read the story.

      • foog

        Again, why muddle the whole thing by implying they were all ten? What the fuck purpose does that kind of obfuscation serve, other than to give ammunition to mouth breathers looking for any flaw in the story so that they can distract, dissemble, and tar the whole thing as wrong? The actual facts stand on their own as reason enough to be pissed at United. Why embellish?

        • Carpe Vagenda

          No-one did. Please don’t flail because you didn’t bother to read the story.

  • BeachLoafer

    Much as I love Robyn, this piece is disingenuous, at best.
    These people were flying on free passes provided by United to their employee, and those passes came with a dress code.
    If you don’t like the restrictions, then you pay for your damn ticket like the rest of us.

    My kids don’t like some of the rules that come along with their room and board under my roof and tuition at their colleges, and I tell them the same thing United is telling its employees – it’s my house/airplane/money, so I make the rules, but you’re free to purchase accommodations elsewhere.

    • Carpe Vagenda

      And their rules are unrealistic, and regressive, and demand a level of archaic gender conformity a lot of people aren’t comfortable with. There is no way cargo shorts on a grown man are more appropriate than leggings on a ten year old.

      • Shanzgood 🥓

        Unless it’s the dress code and EVERYONE can wear cargo shorts and NOBODY can wear leggings or sweat pants. I have a teen girl in a HS that has a really fucked up sexist dress code that’s really unevenly applied but I can’t work up a lot of outrage over this.

        • Steko

          That is exactly the relevant portions of the United standby dress code. Shorts need to be 3 inches above the knees or longer and no form fitting fabrics.

          • Shanzgood 🥓

            Yeah, this is why I’m like “I have more egregiously sexist shit to worry about than this” right now. I had to cancel a flight recently but I didn’t lose my mind about how inconvenient or expensive it was because I read the damn terms of conditions beforehand and agreed to them.

            Sure, the dress code is ridiculous to the current everyday traveler but it’s what they agreed to when they got the tickets whether they paid for them or not. I also think it’s ridiculous to have to pay for checked luggage but that doesn’t mean I can show up with two 50lb bags like I’ve done in the past and expect them to go for free again.

          • Greg

            Kudos to you for reading the terms and conditions. If every passenger were like you I would have had a lot less irritation at my job for about 30 years.

        • Carpe Vagenda

          I can’t work up outrage but I think it’s stupid.

          • Shanzgood 🥓

            Ayup.

      • BeachLoafer

        Without weighing in on cargo shorts vs leggings, none of our opinions on that score are relevant.

        The airline that’s handing out the free tickets on their airplane is, aside from illegally discriminatory restrictions, entitled to dictate what you have to do to get the free tickets.

        For a fee, I upgraded my seat on a cross-country United flight this past weekend. If United had offered me the upgrade free if I wore a pink tutu, I’d have considered it (not for long, and undoubtedly with a few snarky comments) and elected to pay the fee instead. It would have been my choice.

        These passengers had a choice. They accepted the terms of the free tickets, and it’s not unreasonable for the airline to compel them to abide by those terms.

        • Carpe Vagenda

          Mazel tov. I’m pleased that you’re at peace with it. That doesn’t stop it from being a rule which imposes a higher, regressive, standard on women. You’re free not to be offended by that.

          • Gretchen

            Are men allowed to wear leggings? Well that changes everything!

          • Hither and Yawn

            We call them “compression pants,” and save them for the gym. Most guys still don shorts over them. I have, on occasion, seen fitness models traipsing around to the beach in UA boxer briefs as though they’re swimwear.

          • Gretchen

            I learn something new everyday. Probably best not to wear them if you fly as a guest on this airline. I don’t believe I own any leggings. I wouldn’t want to frighten my fellow Wal-Mart shoppers. I do have a rather airy caftan I occasionally wear to the end of the drive to check the mail. To each their own.

      • Scrofula

        Imagine what’s going through the poor ass gatekeeper’s head. I personally don’t know tights from jeggings, but it’s on the list. Now I risk letting them on and getting fired, or making them change and getting fired.

        • Carpe Vagenda

          Well, that’s kind the thing, isn’t it? the policy was poorly written.

          • Scrofula

            Agreed. I got cranky.

      • Gretchen

        I have seen several articles about this topic, but this is the only one describing the “girls” as 10 years old. It makes me question the credibility and the outrage. Let’s all be honest here—in 5 years everyone will be horrified to have ever worn leggings anywhere let alone in public. How many of you still wear your zippered pants or nylon wind suits?

        • Carpe Vagenda

          Right. Because policing the public face of pre-pubescent girls is A-OK if they don’t dress kkklassy like us.

          • Gretchen

            Based on this and your other comments, I would certainly hate to see what happens when you can workup the outrage. And yes…I am fine with airlines having a dress code even for 10 year olds when they aren’t paying customers. My airplane…my rules.

            Bless…

            Night, night

          • You do not have an airplane, Whackadoo.

      • Gregory Brown

        Cargo shorts libelz!

        • Carpe Vagenda

          I think cargo shorts are a fine thing. I even think cargo pants have their place. I just call bullshit on a dress code which considers shorts with bait pockets ‘business casual’ and stretch pants on 10YOs inappropriately underdressed.

    • Gregory Brown

      I agree. You are your kids’ parents. But United Airlines is not our sky daddy. That shit went out when men’s air travel involved neckties and women flew in heels. They can make all the loco-in-parentis rules they want, but that era is long gone, coach is treated like a cattle car, and United seems to be getting some well deserved pushback. If you are a uniformed employee of the airline, flying free, I can understand you are representing, but the kids that United laid the lumber on were probably better dressed than many kids on that flight, and I bet nobody knew they were pass flyers.

  • Serai 1

    You can keep the leggings. I find those things uncomfortable as helll, if not downright painful.

    Also,

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q8LaT5Iiwo4

    Maybe not quite so much OUTRAGE OMG over something so trivial.

  • Carpe Vagenda
    • Unmutual Tetsu Kaba

      They’ve got a dress code for Pass travelers, too. The explanation I heard was to look like you belong in first class, in case you got seated in first class. That said, the only time I’ve been in first class on Delta was as a full coach fare when they overbooked coach from LA to Atlanta, after already surviving the 13 hours from Sydney to LA and I probably looked like shit. And really, a 10 year old in leggings is distasteful? I doubt she was wearing stripper heels.

      • Carpe Vagenda

        Right, but their expectation for the standard they want female passengers to meet goes beyond that. Which is not quite equal treatment.

        • Unmutual Tetsu Kaba

          I agree. Delta’s is the only one I’m familiar with and it’s sufficiently vague for males and females, both. i.e. business person look. It’s bullshit to hold women to a more specific standard than men. And holding little kids flying on Passes to any standard other than clean, comfortable and covering shoulders to thighs is stupid.

  • Holly

    Is there a difference between leggings and yoga pants? What about jeggings? Fashion isn’t what it use to be. A pair of jeans a pair of sneakers and an old rock concert tee shirt and I was dressed for anything​.

  • Vodka is a food group

    Hmmmmmmmm……….. I traveling to Denver this week….. maybe on the back, in solidarity I’ll be sporting and strutting my Meggings on the gangway…….and ready to poke the gate agents eye out with my moose knuckle……………

  • Panika MCD

    is anyone ever expected to be tasteful on a plane? it’s a plane. you’re going to get grungy and gross from the recirculated air no matter what you do. I am annoyed that if I decide “hey, I’ll take a shower when I get there!” and wear a bandana TSA seems to think they need to have gropy time with me. after that, it’s a wonder that anyone would think that airports and airplanes have standards in the first place.

  • Greg

    I worked for the airlines and in the travel industry for 30 years. These dress codes are the norm, not the exception. The airlines give you a free seat. They can, and do, set many rules regarding how you use this pass. if you don’t follow the rules. You lose your pass privileges. This woman that started the tweet has certainly gotten some employees in trouble, but not for the reason she thinks. The ignorance of the traveling public used to grate on me to no end. Airlines have policies and the FAA sets legal regulations.; If you don’t like them, tough. They are not subject to public approval or disapproval. And every employee signs a statement that they understand these rules, so it’s not like the travelers didn’t know. And if none of them were employees but traveling on a guest pass, then the employee is really going to be in trouble because he or she is responsible for the behavior of their guests. Those of you who find this intolerable should never, ever work for any part of the travel industry.

    • Jon Sussex

      “They are not subject to public approval or disapproval.”

      Unless, you know, you want me to fly on your airline.

      • Scrofula

        I for one refuse to patronize Target because their vendors can only get a single soda refill, and pay full fuckin price for coffee, even the crappy non-Starbucks kind.

        • Gregory Brown

          The Starbucks kind is burnt, and crappy also too.

    • SpideySenser

      “The ignorance of the traveling public used to grate on me to no end.”
      I hear ya! I was in the travel industry for 15 years and could not believe how fucking stupid people are. And when I traveled on a pass you bet I dressed appropriately cause that’s what you do. Of course this was back when airplanes were not flying buses but rather elegant and they actually had cocktails and food included in the ticket price.
      But back to ignorant. One administrative assistant at a good size American company was so fucking stupid she asked me why her boss needed a visa to go to Brazil (DUH!). My answer? Because all U.S. citizens need one. Her reply? “Don’t they know who he is?” Hell no they do not. Fuck you and your single digit IQ.

      • Gregory Brown

        You make a good point about where our airline industry is these days. Yes, back when we were flying Constellations and 707s, things were a bit more formal, nay, elegant. Now, except for first class, planes are the greyhound buses of the sky, and travel on them sucks ass the same way bus travel does, except on the plane your ears pop. And how any paying passenger in the herd could distinguish a pass-flying 10-year-old in leggings from the rest of the ill dressed cattle is beyond me. Fucking moo!

    • almaalum

      Thanks for writing this. My husband has worked for four airlines and is still in the travel industry, and yes, this is totally the norm for pass travel. As soon as I heard that, I thought someone has just lost their pass benefits perhaps forever. And yes, I double-checked the dress code we fly under this morning! We can debate whether or not the codes are correct – I once saw a pilot’s girlfriend in a beautiful silk pansuit who couldn’t get on because her top was sleeveless – but they are what they are and you follow them when you travel this way.

    • bluicebank

      The one flaw in your argument is that the little girls were not employees. And I doubt they signed any such agreement with United.

      • Louise Johnson

        The agreement is on the pass that the father was supposed to read.

        • H0mer0

          If dad is traveling with three girlz, although this sounds sexist, but it’s an achievement.

    • ltmcdies

      unless pass travelers are identifiable to the others the on plane..why would I know which kid in leggings is related to an employee of United Airlines?

      If this is about how an airline wants to present itself..ok…but in a sea of women wearing leggings on a plane because they are…what’s the word..COMFORTABLE in a cramped tin can hurtling through the air…

      why on earth ..would I look at a ten year old kid and think “those leggings really are ruining my entire flying experience …I wonder if she’s related to the pilot”

      Flying is increasingly a miserable experience..the small seats, the risk of DVTs .you can’t bring water bottles but here’s a bag of salty peanuts. You stand in line for hours at some airports, take off your belt buckles, take your shoes off, put all your stuff in a Tupperware container to for scanning, god forbid you want to fly into the US and not look lily white or be Australian children’s author because your being held up at the border and so on.

      But with all that…airline management is under the impression the biggest thing I’ll remember from a flight is some kid in leggings.

      well…they aren’t

      • Louise Johnson

        They want you to remember a kid who is not in leggings.

  • Pete Maher

    Give me a free ticket on an airliner to go anywhere I want and I’ll wear whatever you want me to. Just sayin’

  • JesusWasAHippie

    How are the other passengers to know whether or not certain fellow travelers are related to airline employees and, as such, are ‘representing the airline’? “Look at how that girl is dressed. I wonder if she is a pass traveler? If so, shameful. I don’t know if I can fly this particular airline again, or go on living in general.”

    • Steko

      It’s not that uncommon that it comes up in conversations between passengers. Basically the airlines don’t want to do anything that would jeopardize the people paying money wanting to keep paying them money so they have some extra standards for the people that aren’t paying money.

    • Niblet58

      Doesn’t matter, the moron who started this whole thing should have MINDED HER OWN BUSINESS.

    • DrPills

      Hey Jesus, all airlines have rules for pass riders. The reason you haven’t heard about this before is that most people are so thankful for the free tickets they follow the rules.

      • JesusWasAHippie

        Hey Pills, I never said I hadn’t heard about this before (I have heard about it, btw.) I asked how is it that other flyers are supposed to know which passengers represent the airline and which don’t.

  • Scrofula

    So, really, this another attack of the busybody self-righteous (Geordi LaForge gets a pass for Reading Rainbow) who gets another minimum wage clerk fired over another fucked if you do or don’t policy.
    And in any case, what if the girls had been making huge fart balloons in their tights? Was she hoping Jon Cojones would jump out with cameras and say, “What would YOU do?”

  • BreakingDeadMen

    Leggings aren’t pants. I said it.

    • Biel_ze_Bubba

      Yay! We can fly with no pants!

  • Sid Pevear

    Just another good reason to start deploying high speed rail nation-wide. The goddamn airlines are the only reason were 50 years behind Asia and Europe on this.

  • Gregory Brown

    Robyn, great article, and, speaking personally, I would love to see you in leggings AND a bra-strap headband. Even on a United flight! I’m sure you would rock it.

  • mfp

    reason #387 ^^ why i will never fly commercial airlines again

    • SmotPoker

      As someone that used to travel all around the globe for my job, I totally understand. If I never have to set foot in an airport again it will be too fucking soon.

  • bluicebank

    I don’t know who advises United, but for ten bucks I could have told them that young girls are a force of nature. Just ask Milo Yiannopoulos. Hell, just ask any teen-aged boy.

    Puppies, kittens, baby seals and young girls: Your PR department will tell you to there’s probably an adult of the species nearby to kick your ass.

    Except with Milo Yiannopoulos, wherein the young girl herself did the ass kicking. (http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/2/24/14715774/milo-yiannopoulos-cpac-pedophile-video-canada)

    • SayItWithWookies

      Oh good gravy — having a number of younger female cousins, I learned an important lesson as a kid: don’t even try to keep up. Or fight them. Just play along and try to find a good time when they’re distracted to sneak away.

  • Old Man Yells at Cloud

    And don’t forget that United Breaks Guitars.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YGc4zOqozo

  • Mack N. Nietzsche

    Another score for Pat Nixon Airlines.

  • SayItWithWookies

    I thought women preferred to wear leggings while flying for the same reason I wear only one layer — it looks less suspicious since you have no place to hide anything. But it’s so nice that airlines have found a way to make flying more of a mindfuck — by making it against the dress code to wear stuff that gets you through security faster.

  • Donna McWilliams

    I’m a flight attendant. We have clothing standards attached to our ability to ride in specific cabins. Every airline is different but we all know our rules and so should our guests. They violated the rule. Someone who didn’t know the situation got involved and went public about it. The sad thing is the company probably pulled this employees benefit for bringing such attention. Pass riding is a benefit not a right like a bonus of your employment and has really strict rules. One is usually don’t draw attention to yourself (hence the dress code), and boy did this draw attention. This did way more problem for the 3 girls and their dad than it helped. In fact- I’m wondering how they got home from the trip if the Airline ended up pulling their benefit.

    • BlueMonkey

      Yup – rules is rules and the general ignorance of those rules and conditions for receiving said benefits (every person with an opinion and no clue commenting about shit they know nothing about) is only tempered by the fact that we’ll collectively move onto some other stupid shit after 24 hrs. I guess I’m reserving my outrage for things that deserve actual outrage.

    • Niblet58

      Correct. When dad agreed to use the benefit he agreed to follow the rules. Dad may be in more trouble than anyone. He embarrassed his employer, tried to skirt (ha ha ha) the rules, and caused a world wide social media backlash by folks too lazy to read the WHOLE story, including Wonkette.

    • intrepidsoul

      What kills me is how does anyone else know that they are passriders? Other than this incident, I just don’t get what the big deal is & I’m glad that Shannon Watts brought it out because it’s standards like these that should be re-examined. We’re in the 21st century for goodness sake. 10 year old girls wearing leggings isn’t going to make the world end.

  • hvdv

    Dood. That’s Bella Hadid. And now I’m going to hang my head in shame for knowing that.

    • H0mer0

      I think Gigi is the “blonde” one –being familiar with pop culture is nothing to be embarrassed about.

      • hvdv

        You are correct, although I know her better as the one who is banging Zayn from One Direction… You still do not think there is cause for embarrassment here…

        • H0mer0

          we all have our, uh, guilty “pleasures” or factoids which chase us or beat us into submission, like the ear worm type jingles (even if you don’t remember what they are selling.)

  • SmotPoker

    Well now that’s cleared up, what exactly is the policy on men wearing nothing but banana hammocks on the flights?

  • SmotPoker

    The TSA Grope-a-palooza was still free though right?

  • OppressedMass

    Ah, yes – what to wear on the plane? I’m torn between upholding some standards of decency in public dress because I am an old, and delivering a big “FUCK YOU ASSHOLES I’LL WEAR WHATEVER I WANT ON THIS DISGUSTING-PIECE-OF-SHIT-CATTLE-CAR YOU CALL A PLANE!”

    OTOneH I remember flying (on a diplomatic passport, first class) when planes had two levels, one for the cocktail lounge, and I had to DRESS UP just to go on board. OTOtherH, I saw a girl get off a plane in pajamas last week — not a red-eye, and not “street-legal” pj’s: red plaid flannel — and I was torn between disapproval and “hell, yeah, why not?”

    Because fuck the fucking greedy asshole airlines.

    • what, me worry?

      The difference is pretty simple. The girl in the pj’s paid for her ticket. The kids in the leggings were free riders.
      If the rules are more than you can bear, you can f*cking well pay for your own f*cking seat and wear anything you want.
      Problem solved.

      • OppressedMass

        I do and I do. The point is: the experience of riding a plane these days is so uncomfortable, so borderline abusive, that the idea that the airlines have the moral authority to dictate a dress code to anyone at all, under any circumstances is laughable.
        When United provides decent service, they can require ‘decent’ dress.

        • what, me worry?

          I can’t stand air travel. The airlines adhere to the psychological tactic of ‘calculated misery’ – if you want a cheap fare, we are going to treat you like a piece of shit. If you want to be treated like a human being, we will nickel and dime you to death. The point is, for most passengers who avoid paying additional costs for their flight, the airlines intentionally treat the passengers horribly to incentivize them to upgrade next time.
          I find that appalling.
          Yet… if they are giving their service away for free, they get to set the rules regarding how those free riders will make use of that service. They could force them to all sit in middle seats bc the paying passengers hate those seats, but they don’t. All they’re asking is for free riders to be good ambassadors for their brand. I don’t think that’s a terrible burden.

          • OppressedMass

            Yes, I hear you – of course they can make that rule. I just hate what air travel has become so much I can’t be reasonable about airlines, ever.

  • Bri

    This reminds me of the time the airline stewardess made me say that my messenger bag was a purse! She was prepared to deny me access to the plane unless I said, “This is my purse”.

  • PixieThis

    I agree 1,000,000 X infinity that people should be allowed to wear leggings (don’t get me started on how gross I think people look when they travel super casual, that’s my personal issue and not a guideline I would force on anyone else). But to be fair, I used to travel on United with a Pass and I was explicitly told by the employee that there was a dress code. I dressed up and was put into 1st class for my cross-country flight, so it worked out beautifully for me. However, I wasn’t a 10 year old girl and leggings weren’t all the rage when I had my experience. So all in all – United was jerky with this whole thing, but they honestly have always had a dress code for Pass flyers.

  • Rod

    Yup. UA made their code strict and specific so gate agents wouldn’t have to waste paying customers’ time. It really is not that big a deal. United (like companies that fire people for various public offenses) gets to make the rules for its pass holders. IMHO, this is the kind of stupid minor shit that distracts people from the bigger problems. “If 2 girls with Twitter accounts can’t wear their leggings on United, the sexists have won!” No, if Neal Gorsuch gets on SCOTUS, the sexists have won. If Paul “I Love My Male Body” Ryan gets his repulsive dickhead policies passed into law, the sexists have won.

    • TJ Zzyzzx

      Speak for yourself, Rod. Oh, wait. You’re a man, so this doesn’t affect you at all. Remind me why it’s your job to tell women not to be upset about this It’s certainly a big deal for me that in 2017, there are people making excuses for companies that police young girls’ clothing.

      No, we don’t have to accept that United makes sexist, creepy, nonsensical rules–like that 10-year-olds should be wearing business attire or that they can’t wear one of the cheapest and most widely available and widely worn articles of clothing for children.

  • Maybe

    I wonder if standby travelers are allowed to wear diapers? Or do they just strip babies bare and shove them into business attire. (That would certainly explain where United execs come from.)

    Of course, diapers are a big part of a baby’s business.

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