Fashion Police in the Skies: Woman Thrown Off Airplane Because of Her Short Shorts

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It’s bad enough that the contents of our bags are scrutinized. But now our fashion choices?

A New York woman has accused JetBlue of kicking her off a plane because of what she was wearing. Last July, Malinda Knowles was on a flight from New York’s JFK airport to West Palm Beach, Fla. She was comfortably nestled in her seat, wearing everyone’s typical plane attire for a bleary-eyed early-morning flight – a baggy blue T-shirt and comfy denim shorts. But, according to Knowles, JetBlue wasn’t sure that she was wearing enough clothing.

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As Knowles presented the story to the New York Daily News, a male JetBlue worker walking down the aisle and noticed Knowles in her baggy shirt. He was concerned that the shirt was perhaps all she was wearing. A bickering match ensued, with (again, all according to Knowles’ account) the employee putting his walkie-talkie between her legs to see if she was indeed wearing shorts underneath. When the 27-year-old Knowles refused, the JetBlue worker brought her off the plane and to a hangar, where she modeled for the employees, showing that she was indeed wearing shorts. “It was really crazy,” she said. “I’ve never had a corporate employee ask me about my underwear.”

Upon returning to the plane, there was, inexplicably, still an issue with her manner of dress. “[The employee] said, ‘The captain is refusing to fly you today. We need to remove you from the flight,'” she recounted to the Daily News, arriving in Florida on another JetBlue flight that apparently had fewer dress restrictions. After all, it doesn’t appear that JetBlue has any official posted dress code. As such, Knowles’ lawyer will be taking up the issue with the airline, who has since sided with the employee.

This isn’t the first time clothes have caused an issue for a flier. Similar issues of skimpiness in the skies crop up quite often. And recently, piggybacking on the baggy pants ban in schools and communities, a college football player was thrown off a plane for wearing his pants too low. Just add Knowles’ case to the list of alleged airline atrocities.

Nick Carbone is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @nickcarbone. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.

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