- The Washington Times - Monday, April 10, 2017

Hollywood actor John Cho says the forced removal of a United Airlines passenger that captured national headlines is the fault of President Trump.

“Sulu” from “Star Trek Beyond” told fans on Monday that United Flight 3411’s bloody ordeal for one passenger could be traced to the 45th U.S. commander in chief. Chicago Department of Aviation police removed a doctor who was picked randomly when seats were needed for additional flight crew headed to Louisville, Kentucky.

Videos uploaded to social media Monday showed an unnamed individual screaming just moments before he was dragged down an aisle. Other cellphone videos included him returning to the flight while saying, “I have to get home.”

“It’s hard not to see a connection between the environment Trump has created and what happened on that @united flight,” Mr. Cho wrote.

Twitter followers seemed confused by the “connection” the Hollywood star was making.

“What on EARTH are you talking about?” asked Washington, D.C. sports-radio host Chad Dukes.

“Twitter is collectively licking its chops. This will not be pretty, John,” wrote another.

Others referenced popular conspiracy theories or used images of “Weird Al” Yankovic with tinfoil on his head.

Mr. Cho, like the passenger in the video, is Asian. But he didn’t specify whether he was making a claim of racial profiling (the passengers kicked off the flight were chosen at random via computer), charging excessive use of force by police, or accusing Mr. Trump’s brash personality of normalizing bullying — among the possible theories.

United Chief Executive Officer Oscar Munoz released a statement Monday afternoon saying the company was “moving with a sense of urgency” to review the incident.

“I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers,” he said.

Aviation Department spokesperson Karen Pride told the Chicago Sun-Times that one officer “has been placed on leave effective today pending a thorough review of the situation.”

“The incident on United flight 3411 was not in accordance with our standard operating procedure and the actions of the aviation security officer are obviously not condoned by the Department,” she wrote in an email.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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