NEW YORK- A Delta Air Lines (DL) employee gained widespread attention on Tuesday following an incident in which a transgender actor and social media influencer, Tommy Dorfman, accused the ticket agent of using incorrect gender pronouns when addressing the customer.
Dorfman shared the encounter on their TikTok account last Saturday, capturing the moment when the Delta employee was confronted about not using female pronouns for the customer.
Delta Employee Misgendering Incident
The video features Tommy Dorfman, though not visible, engaging in a verbal exchange with a Delta employee.
In the clip, a voice sounding masculine is heard challenging the Delta employee about intentional misgendering. Dorfman initiates the conversation by questioning the employee on instances of deliberate misgendering.
Here’s the video of the incident,
The gate agent attempted to communicate with the passenger, remarking, “While you’re talking, she’s — he’s talking too.”
Dorfman pointed out, “You just misgendered me again, multiple times; both of you have.”
The Delta employee responded, “OK. Gotcha. … It wasn’t intentional, but if you want to take it personally, that’s also—”
Interrupting, Dorfman stated, “She did do it intentionally twice.”
The transgender activist continued, “You’re talking to me too,” to which the Delta employee replied, “You said he, and then you said she.”
Pushing back, the gate agent accused Dorfman of being condescending and threatened to have Port Authority escort them out of the building. The Delta employee questioned if Dorfman wanted to continue three days before Christmas, adding, “I really don’t mind.”
Dorfman posted on TikTok, describing the incident as encountering more transphobia and threats of arrest at LaGuardia while advocating for themselves at Delta.
Dorfman noted that the employee named Tristan was fine with the post and highlighted the perceived condescension in flagging a human rights violation after being misgendered by another employee.
He then verified that the Delta agent did contact the port authority.
“The man actually called port authority. Two police officers actually showed up ~10 min later and spoke to me and my partner about the incident,” Dorfman shared in response to a comment on the post.
Diverse Opinion on Social Media
The social media post garnered diverse opinions.
“Love seeing people like you get humbled,” commented one person on the TikTok post.
“You’re both in the wrong here. You’re being completely condescending and actually entitled. He admittedly made a mistake misgendering – he apologized, and you continued to be passive-aggressive,” responded a social media user.
“@delta, this agent is a ROCK STAR – polite and firm with BS for this fool. Give this agent a raise,” expressed another person on the TikTok post.
Collin Rugg uploaded the video on X, formerly known as Twitter, and it garnered over 5 million views.
“Give this man a raise!” Rugg exclaimed.
He further noted, “The person in the video, a friend of Dylan Mulvaney, shared it to TikTok in an effort to ‘expose’ the employee but it backfired miserably.”
Rugg followed up with another post clarifying that the TikTok poster was an actor on the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why.
Dorfman has previously created videos demonstrating how to inject estrogen.
The TikTok user also interviewed Dylan Mulvaney in October.
Dorfman is not the sole transgender activist to accuse Delta Air Lines of misgendering.
Rose Montoya, a transgender influencer who gained notoriety for going topless at the White House and subsequently facing a ban, accused Delta of misgendering in May.
“@Delta, why did your flight attendant just misgender me and then refuse to apologize or correct herself when I told her not to call me sir… and why, when I asked for disability assistance while booking my flight, was I refused assistance with my suitcase on the flight..?” Montoya expressed this in a social media post, tagging Delta Airlines.
Montoya went on to say, “Clearly your flight attendants don’t know the law.”
Delta Air Lines has addressed the incident, stating, “We’re aware of the video and looking into the matter, including reaching out to our customer to understand more about what occurred,” according to a spokesperson’s statement to the Washington Examiner.
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