Small pin with a big message; passenger receives BLM pin from airline after incident on flight

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An encounter between two passengers on a recent Delta Air Lines flight from the Twin Cities to Washington, D.C., is gaining national attention on social media, but it’s not for the reasons you might think.

Demetria Poe applauds how Delta handled an incident on a flight last week, by giving her a special Black Lives Matter pin.

Poe, 25, was traveling to attend the Commitment March last weekend to raise awareness on racism, systemic change and police accountability reform.

“For me to go to a march to make a commitment against injustice and then I have a moment of injustice the moment I sit down was so ironic," Poe said.

The Brooklyn Park woman said the female passenger in the next seat changed what she was wearing after seeing Poe, putting on a Blue Lives Matter pin and flipping her mask from an American flag to one with a Blue Lives Matter flag.

Poe said the other passenger, who was white, made comments about supporting police and how George Floyd died.

"When you say ‘Blue Lives Matter’ it’s kind of offensive …the whole statement of that whole movement is only a rebuttal to when Black Lives Matter started," Poe said about her reply.

But Poe added in a social media post, the other passenger made several comments to her on slavery including "having blacks in America has been the best thing for them because they can work their way up."

"I never thought I’d have that experience with anybody," Poe said.

On Poe’s return flight to Minneapolis, the Delta crew that witnessed the encounter days before left her a handwritten note apologizing for the incident, along with a few gifts, and the airline’s “Black Lives Matter" pin.

“We have a lot of work to do for true equity to be within reach for the Black community, and it’s part of our culture to represent efforts our customers and our employees care about. For now, these pins are for our people and not available to customers, but our teams chose to include a pin for this customer as part of their gesture,” wrote a Delta spokesperson in an email to 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.

"It’s a deeper meaning, because you’re saying Black lives matter as a major company, you’re saying you do see the struggle …you do see the injustice …you do see the hatred …and you’re not standing by it," Poe said.