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U. Minnesota scholar blasts budget travel, says it kills people

Claims a flight is just a dangerous as a gun

A fellow at the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment published a profane tweetstorm Wednesday in response to a travel guru saying that he was flying to Madrid.

Eric Holthaus, a meteorologist, shamed Jason Rabinowitz for his decision to fly to Spain for no reason.

“We are in a climate emergency,” Holthaus wrote. “What the fuck are you thinking, you selfish, entitled asshole? People are literally dying because of this kind of shit.”

Rabinowitz, who hosts a podcast about airline travel, had found tickets to fly round trip to Madrid from New York’s JFK for less than $300, and commented that the price tag made him want to go to the Spanish capital even though he normally wouldn’t want to.

Holthaus turned his response to Rabinowitz into a full thread, where he said “unnecessary” air travel should be illegal and is “just as deadly as a gun.”

“This kind of behavior is the same as taking a gun and just firing blindly into the air towards a crowd just because you think it’s fun to shoot a gun. You don’t care who you’re hurting. You just care about yourself,” he wrote.

Continuing, Holthaus blamed “unexamined privilege” for creating the “biggest existential threat we’ve ever faced as a species” and said that flying creates “a climate emergency.”

Rabinowitz did not respond to Holthaus’s tweets, who in a later tweet said that the traveler was engaging in a behavior that is “outrageous.” He apologized for calling Rabinowitz a crude name, however.

“I believe in giving people the benefit of the doubt,” Holthaus wrote. “I shouldn’t have used that word to describe a person and I apologize for it and will work on doing better. It’s the system as a whole that needs change.”

That system was also singled out, with Holthaus blasting leaders and the airline industry for their role in the “outrageous” and “permanent destruction of the biosphere on the only planet in the known universe that can harbor life.”

MORE: U. Minnesota scholar: Capitalism must be ‘systematically dismantled’ to save planet

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