Leisha Hailey disputes Southwest Airlines' claim that lesbian kiss was ''excessive''

Posted by JD Uy
September 27, 2011 6:35 PM |

Leisha Hailey and Camila Grey of the band Uh Huh Her released a statement today in regards to being escorted off of a Southwest Airlines flight.

On Monday, September 26, Hailey tweeted about the incident and called for a boycott. Southwest quickly replied to criticism it was receiving from Hailey and her fans. Today the musicians disputed the assertion that their behavior was inappropriate in any way. They do acknowledge getting "verbally upset," but the statement says they did so only after being told by a Southwest employee that it was a "family airline." (via Uh Huh Her)

''We have always promoted tolerance, openness and equality both as a band and as individuals. We both come from loving homes where our parents not only love and accept us, but are also proud of who we are. We believe everyone has the right to live openly in this society as equals.

''In no way were our actions on Southwest Airlines excessive, inappropriate or vulgar. We want to make it clear we were not making out or creating any kind of spectacle of ourselves, it was one, modest kiss. We are responsible adult women who walk through the world with dignity. We were simply being affectionate like any normal couple. We were on the airplane less than 5 minutes when all was said and done.

''We take full responsibility for getting verbally upset with the flight attendant after being told it was a 'family airline.' We were never told the reason the flight attendant approached us, we were only scolded that we 'needed to be aware that Southwest Airlines was a family oriented airline.' No matter how quietly homophobia is whispered, it doesn’t make it any less loud. You can't whisper hate.

''We ask this airline to teach their employees to not discriminate against any couple, ever, regardless of their own beliefs. We want to live in a society where if your loved one leans over to give you an innocent kiss on an airplane it's not labeled as 'excessive or not family oriented' by a corporation and its employees. We find it very disturbing that the same airline who lauds itself as being LGBT friendly has twisted an upsetting incident that happened into our behavior being 'too excessive.'

''The above is not an apology and we are in the process of filing a formal complaint with the airline. We hope that when all is said and done a greater tolerance without prejudice will evolve.''

Uh Huh Her is scheduled to appear in Washington, D.C. at the 9:30 Club on October 12 as part of "The Keep A Breast Tour."

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