When Southwest Airlines was forced to cancel thousands of flights earlier this month, the company insisted the problem had nothing to do with its vaccine mandate.
On Monday, hundreds of current and former Southwest employees gathered outside the company’s Dallas headquarters to protest that very mandate.
“All who believe in medical freedom are welcome to gather outside Southwest Airlines Headquarters,” a Facebook flyer for the event said.
Southwest Airlines Headquarters protest against the vaccine mandate. Join us if you are in the Dallas area. pic.twitter.com/qwBRM06oD4
— Kathy Ponce (@Kathy4Texas) October 13, 2021
“More than anything, we want to get back to the heart of Southwest hospitality, where all employees feel welcomed, cared for, and appreciated.”
DALLAS TX: Southwest employees chant “LET’S GO BRANDON” in front of the South West headquarters to protest the airline vaccine mandate
— Drew Hernandez (@DrewHLive) October 18, 2021
In one video posted to Twitter by political commentator Drew Hernandez, protesters can be heard chanting, “Let’s Go Brandon!” outside the Southwest headquarters.
The chant has become a new rallying cry for conservatives and other critics of President Joe Biden to express their disapproval of the Biden administration.
In another Twitter video, the workers can be heard chanting, “My Body, My Choice!” This, of course, is aimed at exposing the hypocrisy of leftists who advocate for medical freedom on the issue of abortion but seemingly have no problem with authoritarian vaccine mandates.
— My Body My Choice Poso 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) October 18, 2021
According to CNBC, Southwest canceled over 1,800 flights during the weekend of Oct. 9-10. At the time, a spokeswoman for the airline denied allegations the cancellations were related to a protest of the vaccine mandate.
“It’s inaccurate,” she said about reports of a “sick-out” among Southwest employees. “There’s a lot of unfounded rumor and speculation circulating.”
Dubious as it seems, it is possible that Southwest’s mass cancellations were not related to its vaccine mandate for employees. But even if that is the case, many employees left no question about their opposition to the mandate on Monday.
“This country stands for freedom, and it should mean that everywhere,” Southwest Airlines pilot Chris Hill told KDFW-TV. “You should not have to put anything in your body to keep your employment.”
In addition, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton was in attendance at Monday’s protest. He said legal action against the mandate is inevitable, KDFW reported.
“We’re already planning our lawsuits,” he said. “I’m already organizing with other states. I promise you this: We will fight for you. We will do everything under our constitution.”
KDFW noted Southwest’s mandate requires employees to receive their second dose of the COVID vaccine no later than noon on Nov. 24. It remains to be seen whether employees who resist the mandate will truly face termination following that date.
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