December 6, 2019 | 6:29pm |
Runi Goyal was forced to change her “Hail Satan” shirt on an American Airlines flight the day before Halloween.Courtesy Swati Runi Goyal
A Florida woman was forced to change her shirt praising Beelzebub on a recent flight.
Swati Runi Goyal, 49, was flying from Key West to Las Vegas the day before Halloween wearing a black shirt with the text “HAIL SATAN” in all-caps, Buzzfeed News first reported.
The shirt also included the text “Est. 666” and an upside-down cross, a picture shows.
Goyal was seated with her husband on the flight when an American Airlines crew member told her to remove the offensive shirt or get off the plane — delaying the flight until she swapped into an extra shirt her husband was wearing.
“The gentleman asked me if I understood what ‘offensive’ meant,” Goyal told The Post. “I said, ‘I’m a foreign-born minority woman. I know what my T-shirt means and my T-shirt is not offensive.’”
Goyal said she is both an atheist and a member of the Satanic Temple — and bought the shirt to support the non-theistic church.
“It’s usually met with giggles and thumbs up from people who get the irony of the T-shirt,” she said.
Goyal, who is vegan, said she became a supporter of the Satanic Temple because of its tenets — which includes showing “kindness to all creatures.”
“I’m not goth. I don’t have piercings. I wasn’t wearing a shirt that had a goat being beheaded on it,” Goyal told Buzzfeed. “[I was] wearing L.L.Bean hiking pants and vegan sneakers.”
Goyal told The Post that she had to apologize to her goth friends for the comment.
“I didn’t mean to be offensive to the goths,” she joked.
Passengers are required to avoid “offensive clothing,” according to American Airlines’ website. But Goyal said she is concerned about the hazy dress code.
Goyal decided to post her story after American Airlines “failed to investigate” the incident — in a hope to bring change in favor of religious freedom, she told The Post.
“I’m really trying to make some good deeds come out of this. This is really about religious discrimination,” she said. “Because they treated me this way, I can only imagine how they’re treating other religious groups like Muslims.”
American Airlines reached out to Goyal since the BuzzFeed story and has agreed to refund her plane tickets. Goyal said she has also asked the company to ensure they provide training on discrimination and apologies from the three crew members involved.
“We apologize to Ms. Goyal for her experience, and we are reaching out to her to understand what occurred,” an American Airlines spokesperson told BuzzFeed News.
The company also said “Discrimination has no place at American Airlines” in a tweeted response to Goyal’s own Twitter post about the ordeal.
Goyal has protected her social media accounts after receiving backlash from conservatives “who are not happy,” she said.
“All Hail Satan … or something like that,” her Facebook page now reads.