Sigh. Sometimes it’s difficult to remember that we are living in 2017 and not 1967, as racism is just as prominent as it ever was these days. Bolstered by #45’s reign, it appears that racists are out in full force, unapologetically spewing their hate wherever they go. An Atlanta waitress found out this horrible reality when a customer decided to draw a swastika on her menu.
As reported by The Root, Atlanta waitress Shelley Sidney was horrified to discover that a customer at an upscale Buckhead restaurant handed her back a menu that he had vandalized with a swastika. The restaurant, Antica Posta, and its owner have come under fire due to their lack of response to such blatant racism, especially in a city that is predominantly black.
Via The Root:
According to WSB-TV, Sidney was waiting on a private party at Antica Posta in Atlanta’s Buckhead section Thursday night when she got handed back the menu.
“I get to the last person in the party, and they give me a menu that has a swastika drawn it,” she said. She immediately went to her boss and showed it to him, but according to her, the restaurant’s owner, Marco Betti, cited freedom of speech. Sidney, who wanted the guests kicked out for the hateful act, was not pleased by her boss’s response. “I was hurt and frustrated,” she said.
The guest was apparently there as part of a group at the restaurant for a notorious Holocaust denier’s speaking event … which is never a good sign. Staff reportedly noticed books being displayed in the room and, upon research, discovered that David Irving, a Holocaust denier, was hosting a speaking event at the restaurant. “I was really in tears when I was overhearing the conversations, the private conversations, of just how horrible black people are, immigrants are, gay people are,” Sidney said, adding that she told Betti that she would not be serving the guests.
Meanwhile Betti’s attorney Manny Arora spoke to the press about the incident and Sidney’s claims, stating “As soon as she made any reference to anything inappropriate being overheard, Marco immediately asked her if she didn’t want to wait on those folks, and reassigned somebody else,” Arora said. “You don’t check into people’s backgrounds or their political beliefs before you agree to a reservation,” the lawyer added, referencing Irving, saying that Betti was unaware of who he was.
Sidney also stated in an interview that Betti told her not to report to work for the next few days following the incident, however his attorney insists that his client has not fired her and that her job is still available if she wants it.
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