A Tennessee server is reeling after a customer left a racist message on his receipt instead of a tip, WREG-TV (Memphis) is reporting. The message read, “We don’t tip white ppl [sic], lol.”
Nathan Bergeron, like everybody in the food service industry, is just trying to make ends meet. His friend, Brandy Sciara, says that he’s homeless and sleeping in his car while he’s trying to save up money for an apartment.
“I’ve seen Nathan, he’s counting his dollars and trying to add it up to see if he has gas to make it to work the next day.”
Those tips he makes at On The Border Mexican Grill are the difference between having food on his plate or going hungry. So needless to say, when he gets stiffed, he’s upset about it.
But the message he got last week in lieu of a tip was enough to leave his friend Brandy heartbroken.
“I was absolutely devastated and so sad for him.”
Nathan said that, oddly enough, the woman in the couple was actually “pretty nice.” He believes it was the woman’s male companion, her husband or her boyfriend, who left the hateful message on the receipt.
Nathan, a man of few words, wasn’t ready to make a big deal out of it.
“He said it happens, people don’t want to tip and they don’t have too [sic].”
Brandy, however, isn’t letting this slight against her friend go unnoticed. She’s started a GoFundMe account to raise money for him. Originally, her goal was to raise $500. As of this writing, the account has raised $6,825.
Messages of love and support for the Tennessee man, who isn’t likely to be homeless much longer, are pouring in from all over.
Jennifer Abernathy: “You could be collecting welfare but you are out there working hard to provide for yourself. I admire that and want to encourage you to continue working hard despite hateful people in the world.”
Clay A: “All racism is bad, and despite what people think, white folks aren’t mystically immune to discrimination.”
Nathan Bergeron is not the first server to be left with a hateful message instead of a tip, and he won’t be the last. Nor is he the last person who will be stiffed because of racism. But in these days of social media sharing, stories like this tend to go viral.
For example, as The Washington Post reported in August 2016, Latina waitress Sadie Karina Elledge was stiffed by a table. On the receipt, the diners wrote, “We only tip citizens.” And as Fox News reported in December 2016, waitress Rachel Mau, instead of a tip, got the message, “Build that wall, Trump daddy.”
In a statement, the management of On The Border, where Nathan Bergeron works, declined to comment further until they’ve had a chance to look into the issue.
[Featured Image by Jupiterimages/Thinkstock]