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US Airways has a black man arrested for refusing to pull up his baggy trousers but allows a middle aged white man to fly wearing only stockings and panties.

Not exactly subtle is it?

US Airways seem to have got themselves into a bit of a pickle over what is deemed appropriate dress for flying :

Six days before a college football player was arrested at San Francisco International Airport in a dispute that began because he tried to board a US Airways jet with sagging pants, a man who was wearing little but women’s undergarments was allowed to fly the airline, a US Airways spokeswoman conceded Tuesday.

A photo of the scantily clad man was provided to The Chronicle by Jill Tarlow, a passenger on the June 9 flight from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to Phoenix. Tarlow said that other passengers had complained to airline workers before the plane boarded, but that employees had ignored those complaints.

According to the airline the only stipulation they make is that passengers should not have ther genitals exposed :

“We don’t have a dress code policy,” Wunder said. “Obviously, if their private parts are exposed, that’s not appropriate. … So if they’re not exposing their private parts, they’re allowed to fly.”

All of which just adds to the confusion over the arrest and removal of the college footbal player :

Police arrested Marman, 20, who grew up in San Francisco, after he allegedly refused the pilot’s orders to get up from his seat. He was booked on suspicion of trespassing, battery and resisting arrest, but San Mateo County prosecutors have not decided whether to charge him.

Marman’s attorney, Joe O’Sullivan, said that his client had been stereotyped by US Airways as a thug and that the airline was guilty of racial discrimination for asking Marman to adjust his clothes. Marman is African American.

“It just shows the hypocrisy involved,” O’Sullivan said after he viewed the photo of the cross-dressing passenger. “They let a drag queen board a flight and welcomed him with open arms. Employees didn’t ask him to cover up. He didn’t have to talk to the pilot. They didn’t try to remove him from the plane – and many people would find his attire repugnant.”

O’Sullivan added, “A white man is allowed to fly in underwear without question, but my client was asked to pull up his pajama pants because they hung below his waist.”

I can’t quite see how US Airways will manage to extricate themselves from this one but the final word has to go to one of the passengers who helpfully provided the photograph above to the world :

Tarlow, 40, who was returning home to Phoenix after helping her mother move, said she had been shocked when she noticed the older man in blue underwear and black stockings standing in the Fort Lauderdale terminal. Tarlow said the man had obliged when she asked to take his photo.

“No one would believe me if I didn’t take his picture,” Tarlow said. “It was unbelievable. … And he loved it. He posed for me.”

Just when you think you have seen everything …

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