Burlesque Dancer Says JetBlue Forced Her to Change Her Shorts Before Boarding Flight

The airline is standing by its decision.

ByABC News
May 31, 2016, 2:35 PM

— -- A JetBlue passenger is accusing the airline of "body-shaming and slut-shaming" after she says she was told her shorts were too skimpy for the skies.

The passenger, a burlesque dancer who goes by the stage name Maggie McMuffin, says she was about to board a Seattle-bound JetBlue flight in Boston on May 18 when a crew member told her she would have to change her clothes because her black and white shorts "may offend other families."

McMuffin says she tried to reason with the crew member, suggesting some possible ways to cover up. "[I said], 'I could tie a sweater around my waist,'" she told ABC's Seattle affiliate, KOMO-TV. "'I could get a blanket from you guys.' And they said, 'If you don't change your clothes, you're not going to be able to board this flight.'"

She says she was eventually allowed to board the flight after buying new clothing at a kiosk.

Two weeks after the incident, JetBlue is standing by its decision, saying that after "the gate and onboard crew discussed the customer's clothing," its employees determined "other families" might have been offended by the outfit.

"We support our crew members' discretion to make these difficult decisions, and we decided to reimburse the customer for the cost of the new shorts and offered a credit for future flight as a goodwill gesture," the airline said in a statement released to ABC News today.

McMuffin said no gesture could wipe away the shame she felt as a woman allegedly being told to cover up.

"I would say body-shaming and slut-shaming more than outright sexism, but it is really hard to remove those two things from misogyny," she told KOMO-TV.

A picture of McMuffin wearing the shorts, posted on Facebook last week by a friend, has gone viral, with comments both in favor and against the outfit.

"It's shorts, people! She looks super cute. Everything is covered," one person wrote.

"It's completely inappropriate," another countered.