In the wake of an extreme snowstorm causing widespread flight cancellations and delays across the U.S., a prominent MAGA influencer took to social media to blame on DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) hires at JFK Airport in NYC. The influencer, Joey Mannarino, known for his right-wing political stance, linked the disruptions to what he perceived as misguided hiring practices.
The recent snowstorm, affecting over 1,000 flights, also hit Chicago particularly hard, leading to brief halts in operations due to ice and snow. As airports in the Midwest and Northeast grappled with the weather conditions, JFK Airport experienced delays and cancellations, prompting frustration among travelers.
Despite the weather-related nature of the disruptions, Mannarino pointed fingers at DEI hires, sparking a controversial online discussion.
Mannarino, host of the podcast “The Joey Mannarino Show,” tweeted, “I’ve been sitting on a landing strip for 40 minutes at JFK Airport because the Diversity Hire brigade over at this airport screwed up something and they don’t have enough gates for the planes or something to that effect. The pilot keeps updating us. This is on a flight that was already delayed three hours and I’m already sure I’m missing my connection. STOP HIRING BASED ON DEI FOR THE AIRLINES! AIR TRAVEL IS GOD AWFUL IN THIS COUNTRY NOW!”
In response, travel blog “View From the Wing” wrote of Mannarino’s rant, “Such an odd take considering that: most of the ‘pilot and stewardesses’ he’s encountering on routes like Miami to New York JFK were hired prior to the Biden administration; most commercial airline pilots are white; they aren’t the ones causing flight delays; and President Trump did not end diversity hiring at the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization during his first term, why believe it would end at private businesses?”
Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones, creator of the landmark The 1619 Project, simply responded to Mannarino, whose bio boasts that he is Italian American, by tweeting that Italian Americans were only recently “accepted” by Anglo America. She wrote, “Your own people have been considered white in America for less than a century, silly man.”
Photo by Victor Freitas: https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-holding-luggage-bag-1381415/