Seemingly within minutes of the video and story being made available, social media is ablaze with outrage at a video showing a black female McDonald’s employee being grabbed by a white male customer. The customer grabs her by the collar and refuses to let go. The employee begins punching the customer.
While the jokes regarding the employee’s pugilist skills are entertaining (“Filet o’ fist”), there are deeper issues that seem to be at work here.
First, people are angered that the male employees, including the manager did not step in to stop the patron from grabbing the employee. Second, it seems to have taken an inordinately long time for the police to have been called.
What is arguably more disturbing is the man’s “defense”: “I couldn’t control you.”
The statement leads to the question: Why is that your purpose?
Because the incident involves a white customer (who is male) and a black employee (who is female and young) it is easy to yell “racism,” especially in light of the statement about “control,” which easily nauseates. But this could be a case of misogyny. But it is chilling to consider how did modern society go from at least pretending to be moral and ethical and attempting to coexist to exerting a desire to control other people who do not behave the way others want them to? In this case, by not getting him a straw.
As the video makes its rounds on Facebook and elsewhere, it sparks controversy among viewers. Most people agree that the patron’s actions were egregious. There is, however, a tiny minority who have declared that the employee “must have done something” to provoke the attack.
According to the police report, the patron is a 40-year-old transient named Daniel Willis Taylor. He is still in jail in lieu of $1,000. Taylor is prohibited from entering the McDonald’s where the crime took place, and he must also stay away from the employee with whom he fought.
The incident does, however, shed light on a lack of policies regarding such events. The other employees, for example, look “unprepared.” It is unclear at this time how McDonald’s representatives are handling the incident on a larger scale. Perhaps there will be training for all employees, such as Starbucks underwent when one of their locations was the site of an incident that looked racially motivated.