Food typically associated with Black culture is pretty dang delicious. Fried chicken, cornbread, collard greens: it’s good stuff.
But if you were to ask your chef to cook those dishes, and your chef happened to be Black, you might want to be a little delicate with how you make that request, right?
Madeleine Pickens, the Caucasian ex-wife of energy magnate T. Boone Pickens and owner of Mustang Monument Wild Horse Eco-Resort, apparently doesn’t think so. She’s being sued by Arman Appling, a former chef at her Southern California resort, who alleges she said the following:
“I don’t want you to cook white people food, I want you to cook black people food.”
Also, after Pickens asked Appling to use less salt, she allegedly said this:
“I know that’s hard for you since it’s in your genetics to eat salty food.”
And then there was the time that Pickens allegedly threw trash at Appling while he was preparing a meal. Add all those incidents together, and you’ve got yourself a discrimination lawsuit.
A federal judge threw out the case, though. Here’s how Pickens’ lawyer framed their defense:
“Some restaurants serve Mexican food. Others serve Vietnamese, Chinese, or Thai food. The suggestion that such categorizations are inherently offensive is nonsense.”
But the whole “Black people food” thing wasn’t the only alleged act of discrimination, and Appling wasn’t the only alleged target.
According to the lawsuit, Pickens sometimes referred to a Black employee as “ox” or “bull” whenever she would assign them manual labor, and that employee was later fired because “they don’t look like the people we have at the county club” and “they did not fit the image” of who Pickens imagined should be working for her resort. Another employee, a Black woman, was fired for having “too much personality”.
On behalf of White people everywhere: sorry guys.
Featured Image via screenshot from YouTube video