The hashtag that forms the title is borrowed from a post on Instagram by one Shana Poohpooh Latrice, whose job at Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo entails serving refreshments to “rude ass white people” — her words. The full text of the post, which appeared on Monday and has since gone viral, reads, “Wassup y’all? At work serving these rude ass white people.”
By Tuesday, the zoo had gotten wind of the comment and weighed in on Facebook:
At the time of this writing the post had been shared over 3,500 times and by Wednesday, the battle lines were drawn. An ostensibly new Facebook page titled “I stand with Shana Poohpooh Latrice” had gone up and boasted 777 members. The site is described by its creators thus:
This group’s purpose is to decry the violent and racist upheavel of one of Brookfield Zoo’s finest employees! Shame on Brookfield Zoo! Shana Poohpooh Latrice, we stand with you!
That mission statement notwithstanding, some of the comments on the page are non-supportive, while others are pointedly defensive of Latrice, including one that has a profane video embedded in it.
Barack Obama and his first attorney General Eric Holder can feel proud today. We are a nation of cowards no longer. We are at long last having that much-anticipated conversation about race.
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