We have previously discussed the issue of when it is appropriate to punishment people for conduct outside of the work place. We have followed cases where people have been fired after boorish or insulting conduct once their names and employers are made known. (here andhere and here and here and here). There is another such case out of California with a twist. Rebecca Mankey created a scene at a Starbucks by screaming at s 74-year-old man wearing a “Make American Great Again” hat in support of President Trump. Mankey posted the instant and said that she wanted to get him kicked out of every club and make his life a living hell. Instead, she was fired by her own employer for her rude and intolerant conduct.
Mankey spotted the man and his hat and started screaming at him and, according to the man, yelled “‘Hey, everybody come here! This guy’s a racist! This guy hates brown people!’” The man, identified only as Victor, said that she also called him a Nazi. He is in fact Jewish.
In a Facebook posting, Mankey not only identified herself but asked for people who see him to “please confront him.” She added
“I yelled at him. Called the entire Starbucks to order and yelled at him more about how it’s not okay to hate brown people…I called him more names and told him to call the police…He wouldn’t call the police so I called him a wimp, He got his stuff together to leave. I followed him to the register while he complained about me. Then chased him out of Starbucks yelling at him to get the f— out of my town.”
She added later that she was “going to publicly shame him in town and try to get him fired and kicked out of every club he is in.”
It did not exactly work out that way. Her employer at Gryphon Strings, a guitar sales and repair shop, learned of the controversy and fired her for her disgraceful conduct. The company noted “Gryphon does not believe anyone should be harassed or subject to hate speech no matter their beliefs.”
This case is a little different from our earlier controversies where people were fired for their political associations or statements. Here Mankey was seem effectively stalking a person because he held opposing political views. Nevertheless, it is another example of the “little brother” problem that we have discussed.
According to KTVU , Richard Johnston confirmed hat Mankey has worked at the store as an office manager for four years.
95 thoughts on “California Woman Is Fired After Verbally Assaulting Elderly Trump Supporter At Starbucks”
People like her are the reason I no longer publicly claim membership in the D party. She was also a county co chair of the party and many people made supportive comments even though they fired her from her positions there too.
I respectfully disagree that Ms Mankey’s firing is a case of “Little Brother is Watching”. She’s been described by local media as either an accountant or manager at a local guitar store, and her distinctive appearance means she can’t hope to be anonymous when she goes off on the elderly for wearing red hats.
Her public behavior was not only hateful, but she posted repeated threats aimed at the man who enraged her by wearing the wrong hat. It’s vanishingly unlikely that if she’d directed her ire at the man known as “Victor” for wearing the yarmulke under his red hat, then made the same pubic threats, that her firing would have been seen as remarkable.
Small business owners must balance employees’ rights to freedom of speech against the need to project at least a benign public image. Continuing to employ a loud-mouithed bully with very little self-control or respect for other people’s civil rights is something a small business owner would do without trepidation and even some soul-searching. The store might lose customers. The store might gain some, but the small talk surrounding Ms. Mankey and those new customers can’t be something most business owners want.
Ms. Mankey chose to step into the public square to vilify someone over what she assumed his politics and moral choices were. She doubled down on that bad decision,, soliciting others to “dox” the old man she was so angry with on Facebook – social media with very broad distribuition.
Hatred, screaming, public shaming, and a sincere public threat to ruin another person’s life may or may not be legally protected speech. But her right to still represent her eimployer in his store afterwards isn’t protected in most jurisdictions, and her firing seems to me to have been done for sufficient cause. I wouldn’t want someone with such poor judgement and undeserved contempt for others (for so little cause) working for me.
Liberalism has been sliding down an increasingly steep cliff of intolerance for some time now, complaining about other people’s hatred all the while. It’s a cyclical thing, but the Left’s rhetoric hasn’t been this bad since Reagan was just elected. In fairness, Fox News has right in their dishing out its own version of slant for decades, too. That’s what it, The Huffington Post and MSNBC are there for – “advocacy journalism”, the ten-dollar word for “slant” and “bias”.
Rolling Stone contributor Matt Taibbi has compiled “Hate, Inc, – Why Today’s Media Makes Us Despise One Another” as book distributed in serial chapters. What I’ve read so far impresses me that Taibbi isn’t playing favorites.
The “cover” of his book features posterized images of Rachel Maddow and Sean Hannity, but Taibbi is careful to note that they’re no worse than the columnists and reporters of “mainstream journalism”, where red meat’s flung to haters with just as much verve. The Wall Street Journal strikes me as the sole notable exception to the rule at the national level.
This crazed woman in my own town of Palo Alto, is just the tip of a very large iceberg. As a Trump supporter I have been told by so-called friends not to speak about politics in their presence. I’ve had friends who DO speak to me questioned by other friends, asking how they could possibly be friendly with me. I’ve had people get up & walk out of a dinner date because I made a point (quietly & logically) that they could not answer. And I’ve had one friend abandon me completely & never speak to me again.
Many Trump supporters, all over the country, are having the same experience. This problem goes way deeper than the public behavior of a single kook. It is nasty and very disturbing, that people who purport to hold tolerance as a value are in fact the LEAST tolerant among our citizenry. It’s a strange mixture of arrogance, bullying & hysteria. Also disturbing that many of these intolerant ones are highly educated people in positions of relative power & influence in our community.
Thanks Helen for stating what you face that is faced by most Trump supporters that live in areas where the leftists are populous.
One of my oldest friends refused to continue to speak to me because I was not on the left and this is before Obama was elected. Of course he wouldn’t speak to his daughter either because she became religious. He had told me that when we were still speaking shocking me to no end.
I remember him calling me after Obama won after no conversations for several years. He wanted to know what I felt about Obama’s victory and I told him the truth. I thought in some ways this was good for the nation (boy was I wrong) because we had gone beyond our racist past. I said he had a chance to be a uniter despite the fact that I didn’t like his socialist leanings. He was very disappointed that I wasn’t angry and accepted him as my President. My hope was dashed when I saw his actions in racial situations, Professor Gates at Harvard in particular.
Wow, I’m not even American but have had the exact same experiences with so-called friends here in Canada. Just the mention of his name drives liberals into the angriest, illogical frenzy I’ve ever seen so it is only with trusted pals we share President Trump’s on-going victories. One only has to see the maniacal behaviour of the Dem’s to see how truly terrified they are of his successes and the fact he’ll win another term. With the radical behaviour of this Bernie fan and doubtless way too many others, I bet most Trump supporters will stay quiet until the 2020 polls open and then watch out, they’ll have to open a gazillion mental institutions because the Dem’s will lose once again.
Helen, your experience is sadly part of a trend. The Left is not afraid to wear political clothing or voice their opinions but they feel entitled to harass others. Although there are some bad actors all around, statistically it is very one sided.
Nothing like an elder abusing, trump hating Liberal, that gets fired for being an idiot, to brighten your day.
Is Trump racist? Hmmmm, let’s see.
There is a person, a frequent early AM commentator, who does not like the word “deranged”.
I won’t mention any names, but in an attempt to mollify, and compromise with this person, I’ve tried to substitute words like demented, delusional, loony, whacko, psycho, etc. for the word “deranged”.
Just wanted to let you know.
Maybe organized groups of people wearing MAGA hats will now camp out in Starbucks’ stores.
This story could be to be the best news for Starbucks since their hugely successfull🙄 “Race Together” initiative.
This isn’t just rude and ignorant behavior. She admits proudly to chasing him. If I were her employer I would be worried about having a violent employee in the workplace.
People need to stop doing this crap to their fellow citizens. This woman is hardly a portrait in courage. You should be willing to talk to a fellow citizen with whom you disagree. She might have offered to buy him a coffee and sat down to see why he believes what he believes. Or she could do a protest that isn’t physically violent.
We need to get back to the point of being able to have honest talks with each other. Right now, everyone is tending to isolate from those who disagree with us. That’s destructive of a functioning democracy. I’m all for stating one’s deeply felt values, but instead of verbal personal attacks or threats of physical violence, (which apparently seem like the only way to go at this time), get in there and make the freaking argument for your values. Marshal your facts, argue honestly.
If she were a courageous person she would: 1. have asked to talk with the man and 2. she would protest the powerful. Both are scary things to do but that’s what needs doing.
Well said, Jill.
Hear, hear, Jill. Thanks for bringing some good sense to the discussion.
Hey, Jill, why the h____ should he have to waste his precious time conversing with her? People like her should just be ignored!
Lawrence, he certainly doesn’t have to speak w/her. He can just say, no thanks. However, if he has the time and puts down ground rules of a civil conversation, then why not? People won’t ever find out what others think by not talking. We can also find out that we may agree on some things if we aren’t so terrified of hearing others points of view.
For example, Karen and I don’t agree on a lot of things but we absolutely agree on part of this issue. I know this because I take the time to read what Karen, who is very different from me, but who does not engage in personal attacks, has to say! Actually Glenn Greenwald agrees w/Karen in part of what she said.
Talking won’t often end up in people agreeing but it will end in up increasing our understanding of each other. Self isolation is happening on the left and the right. It’s up to us to break down that isolation when we can. (And yes, there are some people with whom talking is simply a waste of time.)
Thanks, Jill. That was nice of you to say.
Or, we could accept the inevitability of conflict, cede many of the urban and coastal spaces to the cosmopolitans, and prepare for a future civil war in which the big middle of this country starves the isolated urban pockets into submission. Perhaps, study
Mao’s civil war lead from the countryside, against the coastal urban strongholds in China. That is the pattern that is taking shape for us, a future peasant revolt.
Nobody thought Mao could win, either. It made no sense to the theoretical Communists in the West, it made no sense to the Western supporters of the Guomindang, it made no sense to the Jap occupiers, least of all did it make sense to the Guomindang who thought their rivals were just a bunch of illiterate bandits. But it made sense to the peasant Chinese, and they won out over all their rivals.
I don’t want to think about how to subdue one crazy cosmopolite in a coffeehouse.
I want to think about how to subdue twenty or thirty millions of crazy cosmopolites in New York and California. Before they reduce us all in the middle to the living standards of a third world nation.
Of course if they do, then, there will no longer be any incentive not to fight. So it will probably come no matter what, eventually.
Great post, Jill.
well said, jill, but i think her better option would have been to just mind her own business.
3. Mind her own bidnus.
What she did is not normal.
People like her are deranged. Irrational. They appear to support a One Party State. Opposing political views is sufficient trigger to be stalked, harassed, and try to ruin his life.
I disagree with Professor Turley about his position on bad acts outside of the workplace. It is up to the employer’s discretion if he or she wants to risk their business employing a dangerous or infamous person. I can see the scope for abuse. However, when truely egregious behavior like this gets out, it does blow back on the employer. There is also a question on whether customers wearing MAGA hats or discussing conservative politics amongst themselves would be safe in their store. If they waited until she assaulted or harassed a customer, they could go out of business.
This isn’t the kind of behavior that employers can safely get behind. She was talking about following a man, trying to get him fired, ostracized, ruining his life, because he voted Republican. That’s truely fascist behavior. Has she done this before? Ruined someone else? Did she physically hurt anyone? She is not safe to work in a job where she comes in contact with the general population, and would be expected to be respectful and tolerant.
She is not alone. She was confident that her behavior would find support, which is why she posted it. And she probably did receive lots of support. My own sweet mother would never dare to speak about Republican politics in public, let alone wear a MAGA hat, because she would be terrified that people would attack her.. The extreme Left feels entitled to harass and attack people in public due to different opinions. They feel entitled to impoverish Republicans by trying to get them fired, and run them out of public spaces. Brown Shirts. Their rot is spreading.
We must stop this before the US becomes a One Party State dictatorship and goes down the drain like Venezuela.
As another example of bad behavior outside the workplace, many employers would never hire Michael Vic because he ran a dog fighting ring. He held a battered dog by the legs and repeatedly bashed her head against the concrete, swinging her like a bat, until she died.
It didn’t happen in the workplace. His behavior would impact any employer’s reputation.
Well said, Karen.
Thanks, Prairie Rose.
Pulling on the boots, and threading up the laces
Shaving our heads, and strapping on the braces
There you have a skinhead, looking for a fight
Skinhead, skinhead, running through the night!
When he is done for the night he is ready to return to the Clinton enclave where a lot of that stuff begins.
Look up the dirty tricks of Creamer.
I applaud the MAGA hat wearers. they are not ashamed or they would not be wearing these hats. what they don’t get is picking on them only reinforces it.
It’s kind of like a black dude wearing a dashiki. If people make fun of him, then he got the affirmation he probably wanted in the first place.
See how this works?
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