How Frontier Airlines Could Heal This Divided Nation

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1 hour and 21 minutes: Toy Story’s running time.

1 hour and 15 minutes: Average time spent eating in a restaurant in the U.S.

1 hour and 4 minutes: San Francisco to Las Vegas flight time  (but not on Frontier Airlines…)

Many of us have taken that flight or a similar one.  After hitting cruising altitude, the flight attendants do a quick round of beverage service (for a fee), and before you’ve made it halfway through your ginger ale, it has been collected, and the plane has started its descent.

1 hour and 4 minutes. Shorter than the bladder capacity of an 8-year-old watching Toy Story. Shorter than it takes for a restaurant to cook a meal and for you to eat it.

Short enough that I decided to fly Frontier.

The email came at 11:06 AM.

“Travel Alert!!!

Your 8:19 PM flight is now departing at 9:21 PM.”

But by 9pm, there still were no attendants at the gate.

By 10pm, the display at our gate blinked “Flight has been delayed” but with no updated time of departure.

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By 1am, all of Terminal 1 had cleared out except for Gate 21, where a lattice of helpless, hungry, sleepy passengers sprawled across the ground in a makeshift encampment.

We finally boarded at 2:34am, took off at 3:24am, and landed in Las Vegas at 4:28am.

There was no beverage service.

There was no apology.

There was no refund.

But perhaps the most aggravating part was that everyone stayed silent through it all.

It takes a lot to use your voice. It takes even more when you’re not in a position of power.

Every month, we coach and provide a platform for people to rise up and share some of their most personal stories.

From Stacey talking about his darkest hours with crystal to Ed detailing euthanasia to “end” AIDS in the 80’s, our storytellers deliver this act of courage, dig deep into trauma and insecurities, and display their heart to a group of strangers in the hopes of opening hearts and minds.  It requires readiness and a safe space.

Listen for a Change provides that support for storytellers to bare all. And all of you help create that safe space every month.

And now, we’d like to hear from you.

If your life is a story defined by social injustices, we would like to invite you to step on our stage.

Sorry the title is a bit clickbait-y.

Well, worse.

It’s actually just false.

Frontier wouldn’t even issue me a usable meal ticket, let alone bridge divided communities. It starts with brave storytellers like the six we’ve featured so far this year. It shouldn’t rest on us, but when the system fails, we need to rise.

In listening,

Thai Chu
Founder of Listen for a Change

Thai Chu

Alive by Shooting, 3649 19th Street, San Francisco, CA, 94110