Earlier this month, a North Carolina woman named Kayla Hart entered a Starbucks coffee shop in Charlotte, North Carolina wearing a pro-Trump T-shirt. According to Hart, Starbucks employees laughed at and taunted her. They shouted “build a wall” and shoved her drink at her. The label on the drink said “build that wall” in the place where her name should have been.
The baristas in the back cracked up. Hunt says she walked out because everyone was staring at her.
On Saturday, in response, nearly 50 Trump supporters engaged in a peaceful sit-in at the coffee shop. All of them wore clothing or carried items that signified their support for President Trump.
The peaceful sit in, which began at 2 p.m., completely filled the Starbucks location — and even the parking lot, for a little while. The group had no demands, but instead wanted to stand up to a business they felt was disrespectful toward their political views, Mecklenburg County Republican Party board member James Tatro told The Charlotte Observer. . . .
Members of the pro-Trump group told Fox 46 Charlotte that the sit-in started out a little tense, but the mood shifted when people started ordering beverages using names associated with the White House, like Vice President Mike Pence and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
“I gave them the name Trump and … they were very gracious about it,” Shellie Anderson told the TV station. “We just wanted to reverse the little negativity… It’s really good to come together and take something negative and just come in here and be respectful.”
The Mecklenberg County Republican Party boosted that the sit-in group consisted of representatives from the board, Hispanics for Trump, Women for Trump, and Deplorable Pride, a pro-Trump LGBT group. To me, it’s unfortunate that the organizers felt the need to put together their version of a rainbow coalition in order, as one of them said, to show “that Trump supporters are just as human as anyone else.”
Trump won the 2016 election and he carried North Carolina by 3.6 points over Hillary Clinton. His supporters shouldn’t be taking on the burden of proving their humanity.
Starbucks has apologized for its treatment of Hart. It said: “We have spoken with our store partners about this situation and are using this as a coaching opportunity for the future.”
It’s a sad commentary that Starbucks employees need to be “coached” not to insult customers who show support for the President of the United States, or any other public official or candidate for office.