A Texas mother said a store clerk scolded her after she let her 5-year-old daughter try on a boys suit for Easter.
Rachel Giordano said she went Saturday with her “tomboy” daughter Maddie to Denison’s art walk, and the pair stopped into Martha’s Miniatures to shop for a holiday outfit, reported KTEN-TV.
Giordano said a clerk reacted strongly when she realized the girl had passed up the shop’s frilly dresses and was trying on a boys suit.
“The woman’s face was just a face of disgust,” Giordano said. “She told me that I was promoting wrong behavior, that parents should not let their children choose the way that they dress if it’s cross-gendered.”
Giordano said her daughter had preferred to wear boys clothes since she was about 3 years old, and she didn’t have a problem with it.
“Maddie, she just gets a suit every year — she looks forward to it,” Giordano said. “That’s how she — she’s kind of different. She just wants to wear a suit and tie, and Easter’s the perfect time for it because there’s always cute stuff out.”
She said Maddie burst into tears as they left the store, and Giordano later recounted the experience in a Facebook post.
Her friends began giving the shop one-star reviews on social media, and KTEN reported that the clerk defended her reaction on Martha’s Miniatures Facebook page.
“I was so shocked she asked for a boys suit for the child,” the clerk posted. “I asked her why she was encouraging this. This is child abuse from the mother.”
The store’s Facebook page has since been removed, and multiple requests for comment were ignored.
Legal experts say businesses in Grayson County are permitted to discriminate against customers based on perceived sexual orientation.
However, Giordano said she and her daughter were not denied service because she would not have bought anything after the clerk’s reaction.
“People don’t need to pick on little kids for what they’re wearing,” she said.
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