Tourists gone wild.
The beautiful, magical, treasured Hawaiian islands have been hit and hit particularly hard during these long Covid years. Oh, I’m no epistemologist so cannot speak to the toll of the actual disease on the chain but, as a surf journalist, am more than qualified to weigh in on the social price and it has been high.
Initially, as travel restrictions waned, tourists came roaring over the Pacific and in such numbers that Governor Ige and woke locals, or “woke-als” combined forces to beg them to stop.
Stop they did and the hospitality industry reeled as hotel rooms went unfilled, seafood buffet lines un-stood.
And now absolute havoc is being wreaked in the skies as not one but two Hawaiian Airlines flights were forced to land within hours of each other due poor passenger conduct.
On a flight from Honolulu to Hilo, Steven Sloan Jr. allegedly punched a flight attendant in the head. The plane circled once, landed back in Honolulu and Mr. Sloan Jr. was escorted from the plane by law enforcement. He appeared in court, yesterday, and remains in custody.
Then, hours later, on a flight from Honolulu to Seattle, two hours after take-off, a passenger ripped her mask off, refused to put it back on and the pilot decided to u-turn out of the World Surf League’s patented “abundance of caution.”
Jai Cunningham, Department of Transportation spokesman, told the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, “We have zero tolerance for disruptive and dangerous behavior in our cabins and have banned or denied boarding to 98 passengers so far this year.”
Imagine being on that flight, two hours in the air, 4-ish hours to go, and a “adult female” is refusing the mask.
How angry would you be?
More as the story develops.