Airlines are known for having strict rules, and TSA agents even more so for sticking to them. From water bottles to hand creams just over the fluid ounce limit, nothing is getting past them. Most of the time it's simply an annoyance of traveling, but for one man, the package he was forced to throw out before continuing to his gate was clearly sentimental.
Unbeknownst to him, a young woman and her boyfriend witnessed his entire ordeal at security. And seeing tears well up in his eyes from giving up the package triggered something in the couple. So they decided to secretly fish it out. But little did they know that what they would discover inside it would change their lives forever.
It was just another unsuspecting morning in Tampa, Florida, when one resident, Ivelise Hernandez, took a trip to St. Petersburg-Clearwater Airport. She was to board a flight heading for Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her boyfriend, Rico Bankston, drove her to the airport terminal and also accompanied her to the security line.
It was just another trip to the airport and nothing was out of the ordinary. But then they got to the security line for screening and quickly realized something was amiss. Just a few feet in front of them, a visibly downcast man was being forced to dispose of a package. At that time, Ivelise had no idea that that event would affect her life in an incredible way.
A Regular Hassle
Joining the queue for screening and hoping you tick all the right boxes is probably the most daunting part of flying. But waiting in line was easy for Ivelise, thanks to Rico who was by her side. Bag inspection for travelers don’t usually take so long, but something unusual was happening up ahead.
There was something about the man’s package that the metal detectors had picked up and airport security didn’t want on the flight. That’s what was holding up the line. They had also pulled the man aside for questioning, and by eavesdropping on their conversation, Ivelise and Rico were about to discover something completely extraordinary.
A Long Wait
As Ivelise and her boyfriend waited patiently for the line to ease up so that she can proceed to board her flight, the man in front of them struggled to convince security about what was in his carry-on bag. Obviously, one of the items inside was viewed as dangerous.
From their standpoint, the young couple were unable to see what the particular item actually was, but security was hell-bent on refusing to let the man pass with it. The agitated man, in turn, tried all he could in order not to relinquish the item, and the argument between both parties raged on. Ivelise and Rico wondered what could have made him so upset.
Traveling in the US and indeed across the globe would never be the same following the events of September 2001. Since then, the TSA, or Transportation Security Authority in the United States, have created a set of quite severe rules for what they may and may not allow to be carried in hand luggage on flights.
These rules sometimes do not sit well with American or global travelers, and they are often surprised or flustered to hear that they can’t carry some of their possessions onboard. This man had definitely packaged something contraband and tucked it in his carry-on bag that alerted airport security that day.
Following the 9/11 attacks, it has become common to see travelers at airports visibly displeased about the new security procedures. Many are being made to dispose of the oddest of items before they can be allowed to pass through security and continue on their journey.
Indeed, even subtle things like toothpaste and creams can be disallowed because of the rules of allowable fluid ounces. Although it may be irritating to let go of them, usually these items can be easily purchased once past checkpoint. But it seemed what this man was attempting to take through the checkpoint cannot be easily replaced.
Ivelise and Rico watched as events continued to unfold before them. As time progressed, the man on the queue only got more agitated. And as a last ditch effort, he tried to persuade the security agents to let him send the item to the airport’s lost and found instead.
But it was of no use. His appeal was promptly denied and they told him to dump the package in the closet trash bin instead. The man became very emotional and fought back tears. Obviously, the package meant a lot to him. Ivelise, filled with empathy, felt something had to be done.
Unwilling to see the item discarded, the man implored the TSA agents yet again, but their message was clear: it had to go. It was obviously a very difficult time for the man, and with the countenance of a soldier who had just lost a long-fought battle, he took the parcel and tossed it into the bin.
Having lost the package, he walked away sadly to board his flight. Meanwhile, Ivelise herself was finally about to bid Rico farewell and find her way to the security checkpoint. But before then, she turned to him and made a very strange request.
An Unusual Request
Ivelise and Rico had been deeply moved by the ordeal of the man in front of them. And now it was Ivelise’s turn to go through the security check. But before she proceeded, she gave her boyfriend, Rico, a warm hug and a goodbye kiss and then left him with a strange assignment.
She asked him to dig into the trash bin that was by the security line, try to retrieve the abandoned package, and find out what was in it. Then she went ahead to board her flight to Pittsburgh. What could Rico possibly have found in the mysterious package?
Thankfully, Rico wasn’t passing through screening because that gave him leeway in this circumstance. You see, since the package hadn’t been carted away for extra screening but thrown into the waste bin instead, it meant that it wasn’t such a big security threat and Rico was free to take it out.
Not only that, he could apparently take home whatever he found in the waste bin without the TSA guys batting an eyelid. And that’s exactly what he did. Rico recovered the puzzling package the man had been forced to discard, then left the airport and drove back home with it to Tampa. He knew there was something special about it and was curious to find out what it was.
An Anxious Flight
Meanwhile, throughout her flight to Pittsburgh, Ivelise couldn’t stop thinking about the man’s predicament at the hands of airport security. She was also anxious to find out what about the package was so much of a threat that they had to force him to throw it away.
Immediately Ivelise arrived at Pittsburgh, she turned her phone back on and called Rico, eager to find out the content of the package. As soon as he told her what he had found, she at once knew what to do.
The Big Reveal
Once back home, Rico couldn’t wait to unwrap the package he had brought and solve the mystery of why it was rejected by security. But upon opening it, what he found was rather unextraordinary. In fact, merely looking at it, it made no sense why it had caused such a fuss. What he had in his hands appeared to be just an ordinary trinket.
It was a snow globe! Nothing extra special about it too. But upon closer inspection, as he checked for any signs that would have alerted security, he found something. He quickly realized what had made the man so sad to let it go. And when he flipped it over, he saw that it was a lot more valuable than he had imagined.
Rico was holding a snow globe of inestimable value; not something that had been grabbed at just another trinket shop. This one had been specially designed. There were two photos inside the snow globe, one of an older couple and the other of a young girl. What’s more, the globe played the tune Greensleeves when wound.
Something had also been engraved at the bottom. The people who bought it had obviously customized it with a message that read: "We cherish you Katie. Nana and Papa 1/25/16". It was a gift. At that very moment, Rico and Ivelise reached an agreement on the next course of action for the little snow globe.
A New Mission
As soon as Ivelise returned home from her trip to Pittsburgh, she and Rico immediately came up with a plan for the snow globe. They knew there was no chance it would end up in the dumpster like the TSA agent at the airport had intended. They were going to locate its owner.
Connecting the events at the airport with the pictures and message on the snow globe, the young couple knew the item was invaluable, not just to the man who had been forced to throw it away, but obviously to other members of his family. Ivelise and Rico now had a new mission to embark on, but they were going to need a lot of help.
A Daunting Task
Having good intentions is one thing; acting on them is another. Yet, having the odds in your favor when trying to do a good deed is a whole new ball game. As much as Ivelise and Rico wanted to help reunite the snow globe with its owner, they knew they had a huge task ahead of them. They were working with virtually no leads.
They had no address, and for names, they had just two generic monikers for a couple of grandparents and a first name. The main lead they had was that the man in question had boarded a flight at St. Pete-Clearwater Airport that day in February. Thus solving this mystery would take some thinking outside the box.
Ivelise’s first move was to make the most of what she had: social media. She crafted a message on her Facebook wall about the incident, making sure to add all the details she had. She also included pictures of the snow globe as well as the etchings on it. Then she asked her friends to pass the message on.
Given the amount of information the couple could glean from the snow globe, posting a message on Facebook about it was pretty much the best they could do. In any case, they were hopeful. As Ivelise stated, she wanted to transform that man's tears of sadness into tears of joy. Still, there was an issue.
A Small Following
Even while composing the post and uploading the pictures of the snow globe, Ivelise knew quite well that she didn’t have a strong Facebook presence. Yes, she did have some friends, many of which would be happy to chip in and help her on her mission, but overall it wasn’t a large number. Notwithstanding, she and Rico remained hopeful.
Ivelise and Rico were banking on the fact that their message on Facebook would get shared a few times—maybe 200 shares at most—but they had no clue what the Internet had in store for them.
Well, apparently the couple had greatly misjudged the power of the Internet. Not only did Ivelise’s Facebook post get shared by her friends, it immediately went viral. Thousands and thousands of people chipped in to help propel it through cyberspace. Her Internet army was growing exponentially, and so was hope for a happy ending to this amazing story.
In just seven days, the photos of the people inside the snow globe, the message etched on it, and the message Ivelise had posted of her experience had spread like wildfire. It had been shared more than 48,000 times! But considering the vastness of the country and its millions of inhabitants, would it all be enough to help reunite the little gift with its owner?
As time went on, more and more kindhearted souls shared Ivelise’s post online. But although it was great seeing this, it was still vague how much the reposts actually helped their mission. Then finally, Ivelise’s post caught someone’s attention and they sent a message. The individual who approached them was anything but a relative or companion of the man who'd tossed out the snow globe.
Actually, they were only faintly connected to the story and had no idea who the man was. So, why had they come forward? Well, it was an employee of the gift shop Things Remembered who had sent the message, and she had some priceless information about the snow globe itself.
The message the shopkeeper from Things Remembered had sent Ivelise would radically impact the hunt for the gift’s owners, and in an unexpected way too. Although she had no connection with the gift directly, the woman could perfectly recall its exact model.
The woman took up the challenge of matching the globe with its owners and got to work. To begin, she sent the picture back to the organization’s headquarters in Ohio to check whether they could pinpoint that particular order. What was going to occur next would blow the couple away.
From the feedback the woman had received from her colleagues at Ohio, she was able to find a name—Linda Modry. Linda had requested the custom-made snow globe particularly for her five-year-old granddaughter, Katie. But of course, Katie never received the gift because of the incident at the airport terminal.
It was Katie’s dad, Michael, that Ivelise and Rico had seen at the screening line in the airport. He was on his way to deliver the gift and, as it turned out, the TSA made him dispose of it. Upon hearing the regrettable news from her dad and grandparents, Katie had been very disappointed, but not for long.
Ivelise and Rico were elated at the amount of new information they now had. From then on, things started moving at sonic speed. Thanks to the shopkeeper from Things Remembered, they now had some names they could work with, and details of the puzzle were finally falling into place.
Looking back, they had made so much progress in their quest to return a gift and make an anonymous man smile again. From just a humble Facebook post, the couple had gone from knowing virtually nothing about the owners of the snow globe to knowing their full names and even where it was bought from. From then on, the story would only get more interesting.
Just Around the Bend
Ivelise’s Facebook campaign had yielded more fruit than she and Rico had imagined. They were so close to returning the package to its owner and making a little girl extremely happy. This is not just in terms of the amount of time it would take to return it but the distance also, because you wouldn’t believe it, Linda Modry lived in their area! The employee from Things Remembered did her magic once more and got permission to give Ivelise Linda’s number.
At this point, local news stations had found out about the incredible story and they swooped down to catch the anticipated reunion. What's more, Ivelise was on the verge of learning about the full impact of the good deed she had so humbly done.
News crews had their cameras ready and excitement was thick in the air. Not even a tropical Florida rainstorm was going to stop Linda Modry from finding Ivelise’s front door in Tampa that day. Finally, Ivelise’s act of kindness was paying off.
But for the snow globe, almost nothing would have connected these two Florida residents. They were two random women brought together by a trinket. And it’s amazing how much their lives had been changed by it. With her heart racing, Linda knocked on the door.
Tears of Joy
Once Ivelise opened the door, the two women were immediately overwhelmed with emotion. Crying tears of joy, they were instantly locked in a tight embrace. Linda then offered Ivelise a beautiful bouquet of fresh flowers as a gesture of appreciation for what she had done, as both women soaked up the joy of the moment.
Finally, the mystery of the dumped package had been solved, and Ivelise couldn’t be happier. She was glad she had made the bold decision to rescue the precious gift at the airport that fateful day. But the meeting was far from over. There was still so much more to learn about this unique snow globe.
Katie’s father had become teary-eyed as he tossed the gift in the trash for good reason. Katie’s birthday was right around the corner, and Linda wanted to get the snow globe to her as a gift. Hence, their meet-up couldn’t have been better timed.
If Ivelise had not asked Rico to search the waste bin for the package, then it would have been lost forever. And a little girl would have been disappointed on her birthday. Linda also shared the importance of the date engraved on the snow globe.
That gift had been purchased with the kindest, most heartfelt wishes and it was at long last back in the hands of its owner. Linda showered Ivelise with gratitude while struggling to hold back tears. She also felt her own words weren’t enough to show how much Ivelise’s actions were appreciated.
So Linda decided to seek the help of some other very special people to thank Ivelise as well and to give her a feel of just how much impact her act of kindness truly had. With that, Linda whipped out her phone while Ivelise waited anxiously by her side.
Linda felt her expression of appreciation to Ivelise wasn’t enough, so she did something that left her in tears. She called her son, Michael, the man who was forced to dispose of the package in the trash at the airport. She wanted Ivelise to hear his words of gratitude herself.
It was also revealed that at the time Ivelise and Rico had seen him at the airport, he was actually on his way back home to Ohio after visiting his parents—Linda and her husband—in Florida. They had given him the present to take back home. As Ivelise learned, she had chosen the best time to return the gift.
A New Addition
The puzzle of the date inscribed on the bottom of the snow globe was also solved. Apparently, January 25th was not actually a birth date but the day that Katie was adopted and officially became a member of their family. Linda and her husband wanted the gift to always remind her of their unbounded love for her. But not only that.
It was, more importantly, a gesture to reassure Katie that she holds a special place in the heart of every member of their family forever. Linda then held her cell phone out to Ivelise, who was quivering at this point. What did they want to say to her?
Leaping for Joy
Ivelise listened keenly. She was nervous and unsure of whom was on the other end. But joining Michael on the phone was Katie! She, too, wanted to join in the conversation, and Linda told the five-year-old that she had successfully recovered the special package containing her new snow globe!
Katie could be heard leaping with joy on the other end of the line. She was also able to thank Ivelise for saving her precious gift. Ivelise was bursting with happiness, and she could clearly see how much she was appreciated for her determination and selflessness. It was truly an emotional moment for everyone involved.
A Natural Response
Ivelise Hernandes revealed her act of kindness was just the natural thing to do. She didn’t even have to think much about starting a search for the owner of the gift because her mother always taught her to be good to others. She also stated that peradventure she found herself in a similar situation, she hoped someone out there would have the guts to act likewise.
Having recovered the cherished package, Linda was not going to take chances as she delivered it to her granddaughter in Ohio. In fact, it would be carefully packed in her checked luggage. Linda also had some sweet words to describe Ivelise. “People are basically really good,” she said, “and she’s just exceptional.”
Praise for Ivelise
Following her experience with Katie and her family, Ivelise posted the incredible story on Facebook and on the page Love What Matters. She immediately received widespread attention and admiration for paying kindness forward. No doubt she had made an entire family happy, and the Internet showered her with love and praise for that.
Her post while trying to locate the owner of the snow globe didn’t just become an Internet hit, the joyous reunion also received loads of comments in support online. It demonstrates just how far a little kind act can go to put smiles on people’s faces. So when the next opportunity comes your way to make someone happy, grab it. You just might be doing a whole lot more, even for yourself, than you imagine.
Two years after and Ivelise is presently a proud mom to her own little bundle of joy! And with what she did for Katie and her family, we’re certain she'll be an extraordinary mother who'll impart on her little angel the same positive, compassionate morals she has.
Also, judging from Ivelise’s exciting and viral videos which she shares on her Facebook page, for example the make a child disappear challenge, we’re sure she’ll make a super fun and hip mom. We’re also pretty sure she won’t be allowing her child, or indeed anyone else she knows, attempt taking a snow globe on a plane without following the guidelines. Let’s check them out.
Airport Guidelines for Snow Globes
The reason why Katie Modry’s snow globe had been rejected by airport security was simply because it was bigger than a tennis ball. Nothing more. Sounds kind of crazy, right? Well, the rules say that for a snow globe to be permitted in hand luggage, then one needs to make sure that it isn't bigger than a tennis ball.
According to TSA spokeswoman, Lisa Farbstein, now snow globes that are smaller than a tennis ball are permitted on board a plane. But bigger than that and it misses the flight. It sounds strange, but that’s the rule.
Man Uses Facebook Post to Call Out Woman Who Profiled Him at Airport, Then Apologizes the Next Day
Airports are often not a very pleasant experience, and if you’ve ever taken a flight, you probably know this. You can lose your luggage and you’re constantly being introduced to a new slew of security precautions that seem to get increasingly invasive.
Add those discomforts to the reduced hospitality of flying, and you’ll see that spending time in an airplane is simply not very enjoyable. It’s an experience most flyers have to go through, unless, of course, you pay a little extra, which is what Emmit, our protagonist, did.
The Benefits of First Class
It’s no secret that airline companies have been reducing the seat sizes in the economy class on airplanes, and the news has been reporting on it for years. But, with a little extra money, you can buy yourself the benefits of first-class. Not only do you get the extra space, but you also get priority seating, meaning you get seated first.
This greatly reduces the amount of time you have to spend waiting in the security and boarding lines. That was a price that Emmit was willing to pay to be able to fly with less hassle.
Waiting in Line
Emmit wasn’t bothering anyone as he stood in line waiting to pass through security, and that’s when a rude woman started trying to cut in front. Emmit knew he was in the right line; after all, he had paid extra for the priority seating, so he didn’t understand what this woman was doing.
As she started addressing him, he had a feeling, though, that her insistence that he was in the wrong line had to do with his appearance.
A Successful Career
Emmit’s larger build made it more comfortable to sit in the first-class section with the larger seats. Luckily for him, he worked as a music executive and had been successful enough to make a sufficient amount of money to spend a little extra to make flying more comfortable.
Maybe the woman had looked at his clothes and thought he didn’t look like he was dressed well enough to fly in first class, but when he looked at her, he didn’t think she was dressed as she belonged in first class either.
A Welcome Vacation
Emmit was standing in the security line at the airport that day because he was headed down to the Dominican Republic to celebrate his birthday. He was flying out of Washington, D.C., from the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
His birthday was the next day, and he was glad that he was able to arrange everything to escape town for his birthday. He was so thrilled, that when the woman started questioning whether he belonged to the first-class waiting line, he took a while to actually get mad.
The Wrong Line
According to Emmit, the woman confronted him about his spot in line by telling him he might have been in the wrong line. “Excuse me,” the woman allegedly told him, “I believe you may be in the wrong place, you need to let us through. This line is for priority booking.”
But Emmit didn’t move. Instead, he said: “Priority meaning first-class, correct?” “Yes,” the woman responded, “now excuse me. They will call y’all after we board.” However, Emmit knew he was where he belonged, so he pulled out his ticket to show her.
Proving He Belonged
Emmit knew he was right, and he wasn’t going to leave just because this woman thought she was right. “You can relax, ma’am,” Emmit said to the woman as he tried to make it clear that he belonged in that line.
He told her that he was where he was supposed to be and had been there longer than her, so she needed to wait behind him. He even showed her his ticket, which he didn’t need to do, but he wanted to try to preserve peace. He thought that would end the conversation, but in reality, it was just the beginning.
A Military Ticket
The woman wasn’t done with the situation, though. Instead, she turned to her friend and said, “He must be military or something, but we paid for our seats so he still should have to wait.”
Emmit was shocked that, rather than believe him, the woman was trying to come up with an explanation for how he had a first-class ticket. He was even more convinced that she couldn’t accept his presence because of his skin color and ethnicity.
A Commercial Flight
The woman wasn’t completely wrong in her belief that being in the military earned members free first-class tickets. People in the military and their family members can fly “Space Available” if they want. This means that they can fill in any seats on the plane that the military has chartered.
However, this does not mean that they get priority seating since there are strict rules for who gets what seat based on how badly the military actually needs to get those people to their destination. What’s more, this was not a military flight but a standard commercial flight.
Emmit had to respond to the woman’s comment to her companion. “Nope,” he said, “too big to be in anybody’s military.” But he didn’t stop there. He went on to tell her that the truth was that he was a “black man with money,” although he replaced the word ‘black’ with a common racist epithet, instead.
Emmit strongly believed that she only thought he didn’t belong because he was African-American, and her racist behavior had brought Emmit to the point where he felt like he needed to address her publicly. It’s not something he would normally do, but the response he got from the people at the airport was great.
The Crowd's Response
At first, Emmit was happy that the people around him started clapping when he addressed the woman. They clearly loved the clever remark he had thrown at the woman who was harassing him.
Airports are a place where tolerance is extremely important, especially because you're in contact with people from so many different cultures. Emmit was put in a difficult situation with a woman who was being extremely intolerant, and he wasn’t going to take it silently, which earned him praise from the people around him.
Turning to Facebook
Before boarding his plane, Emmit decided to share his unpleasant experience on Facebook and transcribed his conversation with the blonde woman accompanied by a selfie of him standing in front of her.
He didn’t think he’d get too much of a response when he posted his experience on the famous social media and thought just a few friends would read and react to it. However, to his surprise, his post had already gone viral when he landed in the Dominican Republic.
The Wrong Solution
When Emmit landed in the Dominican Republic, his Facebook post had gotten insane amounts of likes, comments, and shares that supported him. None of his other posts had ever had this effect, and while some people may have been thrilled to finally go viral, Emmit was not.
He knew that the woman’s behavior had been wrong, but he didn’t like that the post was going viral. “This racist stuff is definitely a[n] issue but this is not the solution to that issue,” he wrote in a different post on social media.
Offering an Apology
Emmit decided to make a second post, and in this one, he apologized to the woman. “It brings me no joy waking up in paradise,” he said when he realized that he had caused another person to go through “hell.” It didn’t make for a great birthday.
He also addressed those who called the story fake. “The story was definitely real, just like this issue is definitely real, but I now know that I myself should of [sic] handled it another way, or left it how it was, and not shared it publicly.”
Some Negative Responses
Although most of the responses to Emmit’s post and experience were positive and supported his reaction to the woman, there were some that weren’t as positive. Some people even went as far as to send threatening messages to him and his family.
“If y’all want to be angry at someone be angry with me for posting it, and direct your hate to me, and not the ones defending my character to the ignorant ones,” he said in a post on Instagram. He later clarified in another post, “[As l]ong as the people that are close to me know the real me THAT IS ALL THAT MATTERS…”
The Response Toward the Woman
Despite the threats Emmit received, it was clear that the woman who had harassed him received most of the hate. Looking at the comments, it was clear to see why she never came out with an official statement or apology. One of the nicer comments called her an “ignoramus,” while others made fun of the “fried blonde hair” that could be seen in the picture Emmit posted at first.
A lot of the comments, however, were flagged on Facebook for being racist since they attacked her Caucasian race. Emmit knew when he looked at the responses that things had gone too far.
Segregation at the Airport
As awful as it is, airport segregation used to be common, especially in Southern states. The last airport became integrated by the middle of 1963, but it didn’t happen without a fight.
One of the very last airports to become integrated actually had to be forced to remain open because the group controlling the airport wanted to close it instead of allowing it to be integrated. As an African-American, it was undoubtedly very difficult for Emmit to ignore this woman when she was clearly making judgments based on the color of his skin.
Rethinking the Situation
Emmit knew that just because he understood the racial implications of her comment, that didn’t mean that the woman understood them. Maybe she had been rushed and stressed and forgot her manners and wasn’t taking into consideration Emmit’s race. She also could have been a person who was regularly rude and needed someone to teach her a lesson so she could see how she was impacting other people.
If any of those were the case, did she really deserve all the hate she had received? Of course, she may have very well been a racist, but did Emmit’s post on social media help the situation at all?
Handling the Situation Wrong
Emmit’s original Facebook post sought to bring attention to the racist incident, but as it went viral, Emmit said that it was causing more harm. He knew that he had handled the situation well. He didn’t need strangers on the internet to validate his behavior.
In addition to the hate he and the woman received, some of the people who commented on his post were also harassed by other racists who saw their comments. Those comments had been reported to Facebook, but that didn’t change the situation. Emmit had handled the situation in a way that he normally wouldn’t have wanted to.
An Explanation Post
Emmit wrote an Instagram post to explain his first one:
“When dealing with people,” he wrote, “I always try to stay on the side of Right, so to make sure I never do anybody wrong, I try to always put myself in that persons shoes, and ask how would I feel if that person did this to me, and if I was her this morning I would be a total wreak [sic] today, and that doesn’t help this situation, or her…it only makes them more angry, and bring more drama…”
In addition to that, Emmit decided to write the next part in capital letters so that people would get the full force of his message:
He wrote, “SO I WOULD LIKE TO APOLOGIZE AGAIN TO THE WOMAN I HAD THIS ENCOUNTER WITH YESTERDAY. NO MATTER HOW WRONG YOUR ACTIONS YOU DON’T DESERVE THIS.” He also tagged different people in the post so that the message would hopefully also go viral and reach the woman. “I BELIEVE IF YOU CAN’T HELP NOBODY AT THE VERY LEAST YOU SHOULD NEVER DO ANYTHING TO HURT THEM,” Emmit concluded.
Going the Extra Mile
Emmit even went a step further and recorded a video the day after the flight to make sure that the woman got his message. Normally, whenever he posted on Facebook, only about five or ten people saw the post. He said he never wanted all the attention that came with the viral post. He had even gone to the Dominican Republic to get away from attention, not to have it follow him.
“I want to take the time to publicly apologize to the lady in the picture,” he posted on his Facebook account.
Most people didn’t think that Emmit needed to apologize because he had been in the right, but Emmit wanted to be a positive force, not a negative one. He had every right to shut down the racism that the woman displayed, but it didn’t help decrease the amount of racism in the world.
In all likelihood, the woman, who was completely humiliated, would have just disliked him and held a grudge against him. Besides, the comments of hate on the other side didn’t do anything to bring people together.
Sadly, it appears that what Emmit worried would happen to the woman who harassed him did happen. Emmit has yet to post anything indicating that the woman contacted him to apologize or accept his apology. In the end, the woman probably ended up humiliated and angry.
However, we can learn something from this story. We can look at Emmit’s behavior and learn that, even though he was right in how he handled her obviously racist behavior, if he could go back in time, he wouldn’t have embarrassed the woman on Facebook and provoke more hate.