My parents always told me to respect police officers, and since I was a Marine in my early 20’s, I appreciate people in uniform. Whether military, law enforcement, fire rescue, EMS, etc. That’s why when I see things that I feel are unjustified simply because someone wears a uniform, I become upset, and disappointed in our (collective “human” or “inhumane”) community.
We’re living in a time when there has been as much racial tension as we’ve seen in decades, as well as a disproportionate amount of hatred for the men and women in uniform who are members of the law enforcement community.
Just this morning I read an article on USAToday.com, about a police officer in Pembroke Pines, Florida who drove up to an Arby’s restaurant this past Tuesday night and was allegedly refused service at the drive through because the clerk, identified as 19-year-old Kenneth Davenport, said he wouldn’t serve him.
The store manager, Angel Mirabel, told the officer that Davenport “doesn’t want to serve you because you are a police officer.” Mirabel then had to order Davenport to process the officer’s credit card and take payment. According to the officer’s report, the manager then reportedly told the officer that the clerk “has the right to refuse to serve” you.
WAIT A MINUTE! Because this was a police officer? What about the Colorado couple who’s cake business was told by a judge that state law said they were…”forced to serve a gay couple, despite their religious beliefs about same sex marriage.” Is there a law in Florida that allows anyone to discriminate against serving the people who “serve and protect” us?!
At that point, the officer had second thoughts and decided he or she (PPPD has not divulged the officer’s identity) did not want the food because of fear someone may have done something to it. The officer was then refunded their payment.
Davenport told CBS Miami later that he had not served the officer because he was busy with other customers. However, Arby’s confirmed that their CEO Paul Brown and Senior Vice President of Operations Scott Boatwright, later called Police Chief Dan Giustino on Wednesday morning and apologized.
Regardless of the apology, The Broward and Dade County Police Benevolence Association said that the apology wasn’t enough and asked for their supporters to boycott Arby’s until the company fires the employees involved in the incident.
PBA president John Rivera said, “This is yet another example of the hostile treatment of our brave men and women simply because they wear a badge. It is unacceptable and warrants much more than an apology.”
Arby’s spokesman Jason Rollins would say, ““We take this isolated matter very seriously as we respect and support police officers in our local communities. We will be following up with our team members to be sure that our policy of inclusion is understood and adhered to.” He would continue that they will take appropriate action, “up to and including termination of the employees involved, as appropriate.”
Is there anything to consider here?!
How would this all play out if incoming 911 calls were treated the same way?
Think about who you will call when you’re staring down the barrel of a gun…
Take the Paco Polls and tell us how YOU feel about the action Arby’s should take.