NBC host Megyn Kelly on Tuesday lashed out at Starbucks over a policy that allows anyone to sit in the store or use the bathrooms — even if they are not paying customers.
After a barista called the police on two black men who did not buy anything, Starbucks announced it was conducting diversity training and was changing its policies to allow non-customers to use the store facilities.
“They’re allowing anyone to stay and use the bathroom even if they don’t buy anything, which has a lot of Starbucks’ customers saying, ‘Really?'” Kelly remarked on her Today Show program. “Because now the Starbucks are going to get overwhelmed with people and is it really just a public space or is it not?”
Kelly admitted that it was “not controversial to do the anti-bias training,” but she suggested that the policy of allowing anyone to use the bathroom would overwhelm Starbucks with undesirable people.
“The part of this that’s getting lambasted is now you don’t have to buy anything to go into the Starbucks,” she opined. “You don’t have to buy anything to use the restroom. And so paying customers are now complaining.”
“Starbucks may becoming a magnet for people who want to exploit and take advantage of this new policy,” PBS host Amy Holmes agreed.
Jenna Bush Hager pushed back on the notion that homeless people should not be allowed to enter a Starbucks unless they purchase something.
“I see the other side of it,” Bush Hager explained. “I think some of these people don’t have places to go. I’ve seen people sit in our local Starbucks here in New York City that are homeless, that don’t have another place.”
“But that’s not the solution,” Kelly interrupted.
“Of course, it’s not a solution but it’s also compassionate,” Bush Hager replied. “It’s also showing kindness to people that may not have that.”
But Kelly insisted that homeless people already have churches and other places to go.
“And it’s a question about whether a commercial establishment is that place,” the NBC host stated. “For the paying customers who go in with their kids, do you really want to deal with a mass of homeless people or whoever is in there — could be drug addicted, you don’t know when you’re there with your kids paying for the services of the place.”
Kelly went on to assail rapper Common for participating in the Starbucks diversity training.
According to Kelly, Common is not qualified for the job because he wrote controversial lyrics about LGBT people and women years before transforming himself into a social justice activist.
“I’m just saying, you know, if we’re going to hold up somebody as an example to teach on bias, maybe we should be sensitive to that person’s entire record,” she said.
Watch the video below from NBC.