Lesbian Couple Kicked Out of Uber
Article: https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/judge-says-uber-driver-who-booted-lesbian-couple-should-get-n890581 Last month, an uber driver kicked a lesbian couple, Alex Iovine and Emma Pichl, out of his car. According to the couple, they shared a quick peck on the lips in the back of the car before the uber driver pulled over and told them to get out of the car. The couple took out a phone and began filming the exchange, as they believed that they were being removed from the car due to their sexuality. The driver, Ahmad El Boutary, had his taxi license suspended by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). However, a judge has recently recommended that the TLC reinstate El Boutary's lisence. Judge McGeachy-Kuls wrote “TLC has provided no evidence that this refusal of continued service was based on the sexual orientation of these passengers." El Boutary testified that the couple were doing more than just kiss, as he said he has “no problem at all with, with kissing. I’m a human being. The thing is, these two girls … they went over and over, kissing. [They were] deeply kissing, the touching.” He added that his car is “a car service, not a car for sex….They were about to [have] sex in the car.”
Additionally, Uber’s community guidelines prohibit “physical contact with the driver or fellow riders.” Some people have been angered by the judge's decision, and still believe that the explusion was rooted in homophobia. I personally disagree, I think that El Boutary was completely within his rights to kick the couple out of his car whether they shared a quick peck or went further. Even a quick peck is against Uber's community code. I'm sure that other Uber drivers allow people to kiss in their cars, but that is up to the discretion of the driver. When you ride in an Uber, you are driving in someone else's car, and should respect the driver's interpretation of the rules. Of course, I might think differently of this case if he had yelled homophobic slurs at the couple or done anything to indicate that his actions were discriminatory, but there is no evidence of that, even though part of their exchange is recorded.