Protesters demand answers after 2 black men arrested at Starbucks

17 April, 2018, 18:51 | Author: Manuel Hopkins
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Video showing the arrest of the two men went viral on Thursday after the store's manager called police because the pair were sitting in the store without ordering anything. In the video, as Ward describes the situation, the manager tells him, "You need to stop recording right now". For example, if a store is using its policy against only black customers but not applying it to white ones, that's a basis for a discrimination case.

Starbucks became a revolution not just for charging a premium price for coffee and giving an Italian name to its servers, but for blurring the lines between retail space and civic space.

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

A woman can be heard in the video saying "they didn't do anything, I saw the entire thing". "What did they do?" "The police were called because these men hadn't ordered anything", DePino tweeted. Their friend arrived as the men were being led out of the building in handcuffs.

"These two gentlemen did not deserve what happened, and we are accountable", he said. "This is a Jim Crow outrage", tweeted art instructor Rita Telaak. He was in Philadelphia on Monday when he conducted the interview on "Good Morning America".

The manager called the police Thursday when two men visited the City Center Starbucks in Philadelphia, sat down, and didn't make a purchase.

The two men arrested last week broke the rules of that space by not buying coffee. "We are committed to fair and unbiased policing". It created a corporate social-responsibility department in 1999, has been outspoken on a range of issues, and in 2015 started an ill-fated "race together" movement in response to police shootings of black men. Wilkins, who is black, said he'd consider going elsewhere if something like the incident in Philadelphia occurred again. Mial, 53, said she was "devastated" by the arrests and urged the small crowd not to the "choose the wrong enemy". Actress Gabourey Sidibe wrote on the Lemmy Letter, an online feminist newsletter, how she had been racially profiled at a Chanel store. Johnson said videos of the arrest were "very hard to watch", and the company was investigating.

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He added, "I want to apologize to the community in Philadelphia, and to all my Starbucks partners. Most importantly, I hope to meet personally with the two men who were arrested to offer a face-to-face apology".

The manager called the police, who arrested the men after they refused to leave.

Seattle-based Starbucks had posted a statement on Twitter over the weekend about the arrests, followed by an apology from Johnson. "We will not fix the problem if we continue to ignore the problem".

"Starbucks is an example and an indicator of what is happening all across the city of Philadelphia and across the country, frankly" said Philadelphia City Councilwoman Helen Gym.

A Starbucks boycott is not needed, Hart said.

Starbucks should look for appropriate short-term and long-term solutions to address this situation with a goal of preventing future ones, says Eric Dezenhall, co-founder and CEO of Washington crisis-management firm Dezenhall Resources.

They also shouted slogans including, "A whole lot of racism, a whole lot of crap, Starbucks coffee is anti-black".

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