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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Why Shawn Hates Going Out to Buy Fast Food These Days

I grew up with Fast Food. Spending my allowance on two slices of Pizza at the local pizza shop on Fridays, Big Macs at McDonald’s, and 4-piece meal Kentucky Fried Chicken or a tray of shrimp fried rice and chicken wings on Saturdays. Back in the day it was a weekend treat for doing well in school.

Most times you could go to the restaurant, order your food, pay for it, get served and leave without incident. With the exception of the occasional junkie or homeless person standing outside the door or kid begging for change for a video game, in the late 1980s, going to the local fast food place was usually hassle free.

But today I dread going to a fast-food restaurant here in the South Bronx. I’m apprehensive because I don’t know what to expect. Every day in a fast food restaurant some Negro or some Hood Rat is going crazy and having some sort of emotional meltdown.

I’ve seen people upset over not getting enough fries in an order of large fries at McDonald’s in my neighborhood. I’ve seen people throw tantrums at the pizza shop because a slice wasn’t hot enough. I’ve seen people throw hissy fits because they didn’t get their chicken wings fried hard at the Chinese restaurant. And one dude was just about to lose it in a Popeye’s restaurant in Harlem because he didn’t get a packet of jelly to go on his biscuit.

Damn…Just Damn.

When I was a kid, I used to go to McDonald’s and other fast food places to get a break today with some food folks, and fun. Now I need a break from McDonald’s to get away from the ratchetness. Nowadays it’s like fast food brings out the Coon in some people. Some are bold enough to start getting loud. Others start shouting and using profanity. A few get violent enough to start slapping and fistfighting.

And that’s just here in the South Bronx and New York City. On YouTube I’ve watched people get into fistfights in fast-food restaurants all across the country in places like Chicago, Detroit, Boston, Atlanta, Memphis, Florida, and as far away as Los Angeles.

I really feel for all the poor kids and adults who have to work in these places. You couldn’t pay me enough money to deal with that kind of craziness every day. And I worked in a library. I can tell you some war stories about crazy patrons getting nuts over used books people have drawn penises in and torn the pages out of.

It’s sad that people, especially Black people just can’t go to a fast-food restaurant, sit down and enjoy a meal these days. When one puts all this ignorant behavior Black people participate in at fast food restaurants across the country it in the historical context of the Civil Rights movement it’s just disgusting.

Back during Jim Crow, a Black person had to sit in the back of a restaurant. They had to wait last to be served if they got waited on at all. And if the food was cold or poorly cooked they couldn’t complain about it. They just had to pay for it and eat, swallow, and accept the cold dish of racism served to them along with their meal.

That’s what upsets me most when I see a Black person acting out in a restaurant or watch a YouTube video where Black folks get violent in a fast-food establishment. Fifty years ago Black people got attacked and arrested at the Woolworth counter and other establishments during sit-ins so people today could have that right to sit in that restaurant and have a meal at that McDonald’s, Burger King, Popeye’s or KFC without incident. And we repay them today for their sacrifice by getting into fist fights and loud arguments broadcast for all the world to see.

Again Damn…Just…Damn.

Brothers and sisters, when you get into loud arguments and physically fight in a fast food restaurant, you dishonor all the people who participated in the Civil Rights movement who fought so you could have that opportunity to walk into that restaurant and order your extra value meal at McDonald’s or 2-piece chicken with a biscuit at KFC and walk out without incident. All those people protested, fought and died so you could have the basic rights you currently take for granted. Show them some respect and behave like you got some sense the next time you visit a fast-food restaurant in the future.

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