This is a follow-up to my blog on Saturday. Here are the email addresses for Bill Ayer, Chairman and CEO, and Brad Tilden, President of Alaska Airlines: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org. Please write them and tell them to take a stand for what is right!
Here is what I sent earlier today:
Bill Ayer and Brad Tilden,
I am writing to ask you to change your decision regarding the elimination of the Alaska Airlines prayer cards from your flights. I understand that your decision is an attempt to respond to customers who voiced concerns over their use. Well, you will be hearing from customers like me who are equally upset and offended by your decision.
That’s the problem, regardless which way you choose you are going to upset people with your decision. Therefore, may I suggest that rather than allow public (even customer) opinion to determine your decision that you instead choose to hold true to your core values.
For many of us who fly Alaska faithfully, this is not a customer satisfaction issue it is an integrity issue! This is not about who is right but what is right. For decades I have been proud that Alaska held to its Christian values and was willing to be different in how it ran its company. You can see it in the attitudes of your staff; you are making a difference!
That’s why this decision is so desperate. These little prayer cards are more than a nicety, they are a symbol of the willingness to let your values show through and to stand for an ideal that has typified what it means to be Alaska Airlines. This decision is not just the elimination of a nice little gesture, it is a demonstrable compromise of your values. By caving in to the voice of a few out of fear of a loss of business you have set profit above principles. The irony is that you will end up losing profit as well. I have not talked to one Alaska employee or any fellow 75K Gold member who is happy about this decision.
However, even if we all threatened to start flying other airlines, that is not the reason to reverse this decision. You should reverse it because it is inherently contradictory to your guiding principles. You should reverse it because Alaska Airlines is better than this. You should reverse it as a sign that a few contrary voices cannot drown out decades of clear and unambiguous messaging about the values that guide you, the faith upon which you were established and the role of prayer in the lives of your founders and leadership.
Everyone is watching to see what you will do. I pray that you and the Board will re-open this discussion and decide to take a stand that is based squarely on your core principles. I pray that you will once again provide within the airline industry a consistent moral message that there will be no compromise of values at Alaska Airlines.
We encourage you to take a stand!
Dr. R. Scott Rodin, AA# 62294816