Delta Airlines is reviewing al-legations that a black woman — the wife of actor and comedian Gary Owen — was ra-cially profiled by a ticket agent. On Sunday, Owen who has starred in films such as Ride Along and Think Like a Man, made an Instagram video about his wife Kenya Duke and their daughter trying to board a morning flight from Cincinnati to San Francisco. “So they tell everyone to line up for first [class],” says Owen in the video.
“My wife gets in line and the guy working the gate…asks my wife, ‘Oh, are you in first?’” Duke answered that she had a first-class ticket and said, ‘Are you not going to ask the guy behind me?’” about a white man also in line. “And he goes, ‘No,’” said Owen. When Duke asked why, the man allegedly said, ‘Cuz I don’t feel like it.’”
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Hey @delta this morning my wife & daughter flew from Cincinnati to San Francisco on the 7:20am direct flight gate B21. Your gate agent asked my wife as she was standing in the priority line if she was in first class. She said yes. My wife is a black woman. So she asks your agent are you not going to ask the man behind me if he is in first? Your agent said NO. My wife asked why? Your agent said “because I don’t want to.” Your ticket agent was a white man the man standing behind my wife was a white man. I have well over 2 million miles on Delta. I know you have a lot of amazing employees that treat ppl with respect & dignity. But what happened this morning was not ok.
Owen said, “Now, my wife’s a black lady; the [guy] behind her was a white dude and the ticket agent was a white dude. But he asked the black lady, ‘Are you in first?’ But not the white dude.”
“So Delta, I have almost three million miles with you. When you see this lady?” said Owen pointing the camera to Duke. “That’s my wife. She flies first. Don’t ask.”
In his Instagram caption, Owen wrote, “…I know you have a lot of amazing employees that treat people with respect & dignity. But what happened this morning was not ok.”
A Delta spokesperson tells Yahoo Lifestyle that Duke had lined up to board her flight 30 minutes early — ahead of children and elderly or disabled passengers with priority — and was blocking access to the aircraft. According to the representative, the man behind Duke was a few feet away in a designated boarding area.
“Delta does not tolerate discrimination of any kind,” a Delta spokesperson tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “We are reviewing the situation with our Cincinnati team and are in contact with the customer to better understand what transpired.”
A rep for Owen did not respond to Yahoo Lifestyle’s interview request and Duke could not be reached for comment by Yahoo Lifestyle.
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