Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Local Black Man Kicked Out of Menchie's Because His Existence is Scary

This actually made national news. At a Kirkland Menchie's, a place that is literally a 10-minute drive from my apartment, a black man was forced to leave the frozen yogurt shop after the owner called the police on him for sitting while not eating frozen yogurt while black.

Turns out he was there doing his job as a mediator and supervisor for a child and a parent who had lost custody of said child. It's an extremely important job that Mr. Byran Ragland has done for years, presumably because he's good at it.

Luckily, Ragland was not killed by the police who arrived. This is in part because he did not make any fuss about it because he was afraid that if he stood up for himself and demanded dignity as a human being, the cops would murder him.

I've been following this story for the past several days, and I am impressed by the local community for organizing a protest outside of the Menchie's in question. I'm also clearly out of the loop because I had no idea there was going to be a protest until it was over and the local news was reporting on it.

The owner of that Menchie's has "apologized," and I put that in quotes because what he really did was release a list of excuses. Apparently, the staff had been traumatized by a couple of recent incidents of violence in the shop, and that's why they called the owner about Ragland. The owner repeatedly insists that this was not about race, or, in his words, "color."

“We didn’t look at it as ‘he is black,'” store owner Ramon Cruz told KIRO 7. “…(We looked at it) as a person who could be a problem from a safety perspective.”

I don't know why people can't stop for a second to consider something so simple as: "Would the staff have been afraid of Ragland if he were white? Probably not."

What people like the Mechie's boss need to do is actually offer to sit down with their victims and organizations like the NAACP and ask them "what do I need to do to make this right?" Instead of offering up a bunch of excuses and insisting that it's not about race when it always, always is about race. The insistence on ignoring race stopped the Menchie's owner from asking his employees when they called him, "is he a black man?" And when they say yes, you don't call the police. You come down to the store yourself and calm your employees and maybe ask Ragland what's up. But if you were really sensitive about racial issues, you would not call the cops on anybody who was just sitting there unless you knew for sure they were white.

Anyway, Ragland and the local NAACP are calling for a boycott and want to take over this Menchie's, and also I love this guy.

“They are gonna say he should be able to go on with his life,” Ragland said. “You know what I say? I say you cannot allow white supremacy to scurry away in the corner and lick its wounds and regroup. You got to keep your foot on white supremacy’s neck. You got to grind your boot into white supremacy’s throat until you hear it stop breathing. And when it’s looking up at you begging for mercy, you show it none. Because over the last 400 years, it hasn’t shown you any. Those are my intentions, that’s my agenda. I ask: How many allies do I still have left?”

I'm with you, Ragland.

Black men who are killed by police called on them for existing don't get another chance.

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