Arrest at Philadelphia Starbucks Sparks Concerns of Racial Discrimination

Calvin Saunders
April 17, 2018

In the wake of protests against Starbucks and news that two black men were arrested at a location in Philadelphia for, well, being black, video surfaced from another Starbucks location in Southern California where similar discriminatory treatment took place.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney slammed Starbucks for the incident, saying it "appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018". I can't use the bathroom but Weston could? Protesters have been calling for the manager's firing since two black men were arrested for trespassing last week while waiting on an acquaintance for a business meeting.

"I think we should preserve our right to stop spending our money at places that don't respect us equally".

The Philadelphia Inquirer identified the white man as real estate developer Andrew Yaffe.

Outrage over the arrest of two black men at a Philadelphia Starbucks continued on the evening of April 16. "What did they do?"

"Training just does not work, these things are so well-established", said Dr. A video of the incident, posted to Twitter by Philadelphia native Melissa DePino, has been viewed more than 4 million times.

Tyler said the incident "demonstrates that if you're black there's nobody that's safe".

Brandon Ward of Carson, California shared a almost 2-minute video of himself at a Los Angeles Starbucks, showing a white man walking out of a bathroom. No charges were filed, authorities said.

Johnson said he has yet to speak to the men, who have retained an attorney.

In the meantime, police commissioner Richard Ross continues to stand by the actions of his officers.

The commissioner reiterated earlier statements that the police didn't do anything wrong. I've never been an employee or read their handbook on policies and procedures, but as a career freelancer, I spend a decent amount of my existence in several Starbucks locations throughout the city and could probably put my not-yet-conceived child through college with what I've spent there.

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Ross, who is black, said he was aware of issues of implicit bias - unconscious discrimination based on race - but did not say whether he believed it applied in this case. "We are committed to fair and unbiased policing". "Our store manager never intended for these men to be arrested and this should never have escalated as it did", he added.

Yesterday, comedian Kevin Hart went to Twitter to single out the coffee franchise but did not call for a boycott.

But the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU-PA) claimed that policing is discriminatory in the section of Center City where this Starbucks is located. "In fact, they were really trying not to make an arrest in this case". Actress Gabourey Sidibe wrote on the Lemmy Letter, an online feminist newsletter, how she had been racially profiled at a Chanel store. The customers said they were waiting for another man to arrive.

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson said during a news conference that he would "wait and see" if the company actually implemented change.

In an interview, Johnson said part of the problem was a local policy that was ambiguous about when to call police. He said he hopes to meet with the two men in the next couple of days and apologize to them face-to-face.

That manager is no longer working at the store, Starbucks said, but it's unclear if she was terminated or relocated.

Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner also refused to prosecute after Starbucks asked to not press charges.

"I can tell you that that police officer did not want to have to make an arrest in that incident", he told WPVI. I repeat please make this situation right! The manager on duty was wrong. "It's that simple... That's who needs to take responsibility for this wrongdoing".

"The Starbucks situation provides unsafe insight regarding the failure of our nation to take implicit bias seriously", the NAACP said.

As a result of the arrests, protests erupted outside of the Philadelphia Starbucks on Monday.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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