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South Carolina restaurant ejected African-American customers when white person felt ‘threatened’

By David Ferguson
Saturday, August 24, 2013 11:31 EDT
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Brown party via Facebook
 
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A group of customers at a Wild Wing restaurant in Charleston, SC were forced to wait two hours for their table and then were ultimately denied service on the basis of their race. According to Charleston’s WNEW Channel 5, the group of 25 African-Americans were asked to leave because a white customer felt “threatened.”

Michael Brown and a group composed of family and friends were gathered in July at the North Charleston Wild Wing Café to say farewell to a cousin who was moving away. The party waited for two hours for a table only to be told by a manager that there was “a situation.”

“She said there’s a situation where one of our customers feels threatened by your party, so she asked us not to seat you in our section, which totally alarmed all of us because we’re sitting there peaceably for two hours,” Brown told Channel 5. “Obviously, if we were causing any conflict, we would have been ejected out of the place hours before.”

A member of the party began to film the discussion between Brown and the restaurant manager with a camera phone.

“I asked her I want to be clear with you,” Brown recounted. “I said so you’re telling me I have to leave. She said I have a right to deny you service. I said so you’re asking me to leave because you’re upset because he was recording you, after we’ve waited for two hours, and after you’ve already pretty much discriminated on us, and she answered yes.”

Brown took the issue to Facebook on Friday after several unsuccessful calls to the company’s corporate office.


I will never go to Wild wings cafe in N. Chs again! We (Party of 25 family and friends) waited 2hrs, patiently and were refused service because another customer (White) felt threatened by us. This type of racial discrimination is unacceptable and we have to put a STOP TO IT. The manager looked me dead in the face and said she was refusing us service because she had a right to and simply she felt like it. DO NOT SUPPORT THIS ESTABLISHMENT… PLEASE SHARE THIS POST… We need your help.

That got Wild Wings’ corporate office’s attention.

“We got alerted through social media, so we always encourage our customers to respond to us or to comment on our social media pages,” Debra Stokes, chief marketing officer for Wild Wing Cafe, told Channel 5.

“We had a conversation,” says Stokes. “It was a really good conversation. He and many of his family and friends were there about a month ago, and they are regular customers of ours. So, they were having a going away party, and they just didn’t receive the experience that they have come to know and love.”

Watch video about this story, embedded below via MNEM:

WNEM TV 5

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
 
 
 
 
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