Social Question

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

What would you do if people started singing Christian songs on a plane?

Asked by Hawaii_Jake (37525points) April 19th, 2022

Here is an article with video of an incident on a flight in the US yesterday.

Ironically, I would loudly protest to a flight attendant. I want a flight to be as calm as possible, and that includes being quiet. Or maybe I would put in earbuds and try to listen to the music provided by the airline. I don’t carry playlists on my devices.

If I am captive in a plane for an extended period, I have paid for my space. A person preaching to me is invading my space. I believe that singing religious songs is akin to preaching.

Is free speech involved here?

What are your thoughts?

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39 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

Way way out of line. What if they had been singing in Arabic? You bet there would have been consequences. I have seen too many people supporting this. Ugh.

raum's avatar

I don’t really care about the religious aspect of it. But I would not want to be on a plane with a bunch of people who are singing. Since singing spreads more droplets and aerosols. :/

elbanditoroso's avatar

Ask the flight attendant to shut them up.

longgone's avatar

If they’re singing for a few minutes, I would not care (possibly enjoy the tune, if not the words). I like music and would be fine with other religions’ songs, too.

But more than a couple songs? No. People use flights to rest and work, and I assume there was no poll to determine if music was welcome.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I’d pop a xanax and sleep through it hopefully.

flutherother's avatar

It’s not acceptable and I would find it extremely irritating. Passengers should respect their fellow passengers and keep quiet.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I would be annoyed by some one singing ANY song.

rebbel's avatar

I view it as assault.
There’s no way you can escape said drivel (as opposed to in a mall, or on a square, a beach).
Plus, I would perceive it as evangelism, and I don’t like that happening forcefully.

I saw that video a few days ago and it’s major cringe.
There was a guy sitting in the middle of the performance who was not amused, at all.
Could’ve been me.

jca2's avatar

A few songs, any religion, I wouldn’t care. I wouldn’t be thrilled but I’d figure, let them have at it.

More than about ten minutes of it, I’d ask the flight attendant to please ask them to stop. If she or he didn’t or couldn’t, I’d put the ear buds in and watch the screen.

kritiper's avatar

I would try to find another seat either in the front or the back of the plane, then plug my ears with something.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

The “Christian” part is not the problem to me. The selfishness is. “This flight is about ME!!! Look at ME!!!!”

Yeah, no. Keep your hobby to yourself.

Here’s a video taken by another passenger on the flight.

Demosthenes's avatar

Put on my closed-back headphones and tune it out. I admit I never bring headphones for the purposes of a Christian music flash mob, but they’re a good defense against it. :P

ragingloli's avatar

Hopefully I would counter with my own song.

smudges's avatar

Ooooo. . .I’d be pissed. Like @Dutchess_III, I don’t want to hear anyone singing anything! But singing religious songs is beyond the pale. Depending on my mood, I might have asked them to stop, and/or complained to the flight attendant.

SnipSnip's avatar

I might join in.

filmfann's avatar

I am a Christian, but my response would probably end with my being put on a no-fly list.

Blackberry's avatar

I’d use my wireless headphones because I’m in the future.
I already know I’m residing within a de facto anglo christian nation so things like this don’t surprise me at all.

cookieman's avatar

I honestly wouldn’t care as I’d likely have headphones on.

chyna's avatar

Hopefully I would have my headphones with me. That is totally selfish.

Mimishu1995's avatar

This really depends on the context. What we are seeing is only a 20-second clip of the guy already in the middle of his singing. We don’t know how long it had started, and how long it lasted. We don’t know if he announced to the passengers he was going to sing or he just came out of nowhere and sang without consent from anyone. We don’t know why he sang in the first place, whether it was for the Ukrainians like he said later on or it was just a way to preach. A 20-second video in a short tweet tells me nothing.

If I learned something from my modded question about Covid and years of following online drama, it would be “don’t judge anything put on social media that sounds emotionally charged”. I have seen too many people manipulate the public with distorted evidence to jump into any outrage completely now.

I’m not saying the guy was completely in the right. It’s just that a single short tweet doesn’t give me enough information to pass my judgement. I want to exercise as much caution as possible, especially when it seems to me that the tweet tries to raise a rather controversial debate about religion.

Brian1946's avatar

In anticipation of such tomfoolery, I always carry a 200-watt boom box when I fly.

In the aforementioned occasion, I’d counterblast with Arthur Brown- Fire! ;-D

smudges's avatar

Check it out @Mimishu1995. There’s a lot of info about it. He claims that he asked for permission and got it, but not from people on the flight, and that he only did 2 songs.

Demosthenes's avatar

@Mimishu1995 The question is whether people are comfortable with religious material being sung in a confined space where there is no choice whether you listen to it or not. Any singing in such a place could be at least annoying, but it is different when the content of the singing is religious. It’s an imposition in a way that another song might not be. I don’t see how the tweet was intending to start a religious debate. Some people in the comments did. But that is pertinent to the question nonetheless because we’re talking about something that is akin to preaching. The religious question is going to come up.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@smudges was the singing captured in full somewhere? Like from start to end?

And I’m also considering the fact that the guy might be lying too. The information I can see right now is all in the “he said she said” realm.

@Demosthenes if the guy asked for permission, and he had a good reason behind it like the claim about Ukrainians that he made, then I would be ok. Personally, I have no problem with people singing anything, religious or not, as long as I know why they do it and they keep it short. That is why I ask for context.

smudges's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I don’t know. I haven’t come across it if there is.

Demosthenes's avatar

@Mimishu1995 Fair enough. My answer would be the same no matter the context. It might be the same even if he were just singing some popular song, though my discomfort would be greater with religious singing. And of course it would be greater the longer the singing went on.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@smudges that’s the problem. Cutting videos and only posting the “convenient” part has been a tactic of manipulation on social media that I’m aware of. I have personally seen it being done in a lot of internet drama in my country at least. The last time it was used, a teacher was fired from her job and the poster of the accusing video got out scot-free, despite the overwhelming evidence that he was doing it intentionally and the outrage following it.

On the guy’s side, an Instagram post tells me nothing. There is no one to confirm it, so we only have him as the reference. And that means he is free to say anything he wants. Maybe the Ukraine thing was a complete lie to hide his true intention. Maybe he somehow manipulated or even blackmailed the plane staff into letting him sing. We don’t know.

I’m sorry that I sound like I’m overthinking it, but I have seen too much needless drama over the years that I’m particularly sensitive about misinformation on social media. I hope you understand.

@Demosthenes oh, so this is where we differs. You don’t need context because your answer is the same at every situation, but my answer would vary. So different need then :P

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I appreciate your healthy skepticism. Religion is a heated topic in the US.

smudges's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I understand what you’re saying, and in another situation I would completely agree. In this situation, in my opinion anyway, everything you mention is irrelevant. I don’t care if he had permission, if he was helping war-torn countries, how long he sang, what song/s he sang, or even whether they were religious songs.

What it boils down to is he took it upon himself to play his guitar and sing with absolutely no regard to whether or not people who were stuck in an inescapable situation wanted him to or not. He was only thinking of himself and the fact that he wanted to sing.

If I, or anyone, chose to put themselves where they might hear religious songs, that’s one thing, but to have it forced upon one is an entirely different matter.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@smudges I agree that the guy should have sung somewhere more appropriately. And I appreciate that you are able to put aside the religion undertone and go to the heart of the matter. Unfortunately not everyone is able to do that. That is why we see so many religious comments under the tweet, whether the OP was to talk about religion or not.

It just seems to me that there is more to the story than we are allowed to see.

longgone's avatar


“What it boils down to is he took it upon himself to play his guitar and sing with absolutely no regard to whether or not people who were stuck in an inescapable situation wanted him to or not. He was only thinking of himself and the fact that he wanted to sing.”

A few people have said this, but you put it very well. I’m curious: What are your thoughts about the videos we sometimes see, like this movie scene or this performance? If it’s different, that’s valid. But what exactly is the difference? That the people seem to be willing participants? That the songs aren’t as (obviously) religious?

rebbel's avatar

That second clip, the guy starting to talk to his fellow commuters…., gives me vomit reactions.
The audacity.

The Mr Rogers scene less so (probably because it is initiated by children).

KNOWITALL's avatar

I read it was said ‘we’re taking over this plane for Jesus.’ Imagine the reaction to a Muslim saying that. I believe that’s a big part of the negative feedback.

cookieman's avatar

(Did Jesus ever get his pilot’s license?)

Forever_Free's avatar

It was not an event that happened in the US 2 days ago. The twitter post stated April 16. Look at the video. I see one person with a mask on. Fake News!

KRD's avatar

I like Christian music but I would ask them or the flight attendant that they should quiet down. Just because you like to praise God which I do you don’t have to do it loudly and annoy everyone. They should be quieter.

vimead1's avatar

That’s exactly what I was about to say @KRD. You can be religious and believe in any god you want, that’s fine. But don`t force you`re religion on others.

smudges's avatar

@longgone, Imo, the difference is that the people, especially in the Roger’s clip, embraced the song willingly. Also, he himself didn’t begin it, the passengers did. In the second one, I had to watch and be drawn in because my knee-jerk reaction was not receptive at all. “Who’s this damned stranger thinking he can talk me out of my grumpy Monday morning?! Sit down and shut up, bozo!” But the song itself drew me in – it’s a song that has so many positive feelings surrounding it and that most people on the planet have heard. It looked like some of the passengers felt similar to how I would have, but were also drawn in by the song.

In both situations, the passengers were stuck and basically had to listen whether they wanted to or not. So in comparing the 3 clips, I can see that yes, it’s the religious aspect of the first one that bothers me because with the other 2 songs, there’s no strong belief system attached to them. They’re simply happy songs. It would be interesting to see what would happen if there were a few ‘boos’ in the crowd, wouldn’t it?

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