It’s becoming somewhat of a spectator sport.

Mask disputes are in the travel spotlight, with the most recent example being video posted on TikTok that shows an entire plane of Southwest Airlines passengers applauding the removal of a woman accused of breaking federal mask rules.

The unidentified woman was wearing a mask at the start of the clip. 

What did we do before social media videos?

In this one, the videographer begins recording in mid-argument.

Here’s what seems to have happened:

  • A woman is clashing with the flight crew.
  • The woman, in animated fashion, denies that she refused to cover her face.
  • The woman gets up to leave, and the crowd applauds.
  • The woman fires back with middle fingers before leaving with a male companion. 
  • The woman pleaded her case.

“You’re saying I didn’t comply and put my mask on when you asked me to?” she asks another person. “Are you seriously telling them that I didn’t put my mask on when you asked me to?”

“You! Are! A liar,” she screams.

By then, the noise from passengers urging the woman to leave begins to drown her out.

Other voices:


“Get off the plane.” 

“I hope you’re single, buddy!”

“That’s what happens when you don’t say you’re sorry.” 

And one passenger decided it called for a little dance.

The video was posted early last week by user B_elder56 with the caption #karen.

Southwest did not provide details of the incident when asked by Business Insider, but shared its policy: 

“Federal law requires Southwest to ensure every person age two and over to wear a mask at all times throughout a flight, including during boarding and deplaning. We communicate the face-covering mandate to all Customers at multiple touchpoints throughout the travel journey.”

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