Walmart Apologizes For Making Fun Of A Muslim Woman Wearing A Veil

Walmart has apologized to a Muslim woman who said she was mocked by a Walmart employee as she paid for her items, says the Associated Press.

“Please don’t stick me up,” a cashier told the shopper on Feb. 2, according to the Nevada chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Wal-Mart apologized in a letter signed by Rolando Rodriquez, a vice president and regional general manager.

“I can assure you that the associate in question was disciplined in accordance with our employment policies as a result of the situation,” Rodriguez said without disclosing details.

The apology has apparently been accepted.

Wal-Mart apologizes to Muslim woman mocked for wearing face veil [InFocus]
(Photo:chasingfun)

Comments

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  1. I’m just gonna say this now before we get a thread full of statements to the contrary: this is the fault of one solitary idiot who could have said this working anywhere. WM ain’t really the guilty party.

  2. SuffolkHouse says:

    Isn’t the veil called a hijab?

  3. skatanic says:

    As much as i hate wal-mart, BayStateDarren is right. So while this shouldn’t be held against them in the worst companies in America constest, there are still plenty of other reasons wal-mart is horrible.

  4. pigeonpenelope says:

    you mean, “walmart isn’t really the guilty part.”

    because the walmart employee is a representative of walmart, anything that employee does while in walmart gear and working, is walmart. that is why walmart is guilty. certainly the employee’s responsibility is to take personal accountability.

  5. pigeonpenelope says:

    @pigeonpenelope: “party”

  6. Canoehead says:

    So all people who insult muslims are Christians, per your graphic? What about radical Aetheists like Christopher Hitchens? He doesn’t like any religion, but particularly dislikes muslims.

    New headline:

    “Kneejerk Blog Write Douche Apologizes For Makeing Fun of Christians”

  7. cmdr.sass says:

    Doesn’t sound like any real harm was intended on the part of the associate, either. Sometimes people let slip bad jokes in an attempt to break the ice. I’m sure the associate instantly regretted it. Islamic Fundamentalism is serious business, after all.

  8. @pigeonpenelope: [Did you just correct my use of ain't?] Anywho…yes he was representing WM, but they did not cause him to say those stupid words. They can only act after the fact on this one, unless the employee had a history of complaints for crap like this. All the diversity sensitivity training in the world [which their brain>mouth drones will probably have to endure more of now] can’t stop every one from ever saying something insensitive/ignorant, etc. IMHO, the apology [and maybe a giftcard] is enough to cover WM’s ass on this one.

  9. ChuckECheese says:

    @SuffolkHouse: Yes, but hijab is read from right-to-left, whereas most ‘mericans learned to read (watch TV) from right-to-left. Veil is a correct word.

  10. witeowl says:

    @pigeonpenelope: So Grammar Nazis don’t need to use proper capitalization? Glass house, my friend. Glass house.

  11. phelander says:

    Part and parcel of the culture of fear and prejudice peddled by the BUSHCO(tm) cabal every single frigging day. “EVERY MUSLIM IS A TERRORIST WHO WANTS TO TAKE AWAY YOUR FREEDOM” Bullshit. Anyone who believes that is a fucktard on the highest order.

  12. pigeonpenelope says:

    @cmdr.sass: ignorantly slipping in a bad joke is not a good excuse nor okay. what was said was incredibly hurtful for the lady. there are more peaceful and fantastic muslims out there then are radicals. while islamic fundamentalism is scary, so is racism and ignorance–primarily because they go hand in hand.

  13. ChuckECheese says:

    @ChuckECheese: Aargh. that should read “(watch TV) from left-to-right.”

  14. phelander says:

    There is no FUN in Fundamentalism. Snicker.

  15. luz says:

    Fired. Next?

  16. mgy says:

    @SuffolkHouse: There are different names for different types of hijab (which essentially means “cover”). Kind of like how we have different types of shirts – polo, button-up, t-shirt, etc.

  17. mgy says:

    @mgy: I found a wikipedia link!
    [en.wikipedia.org]

  18. JackSparks says:

    It’s true – WalMart as a corporation is so institutionally insensitive to Islam that they opened a store in Dearborn, MI that is expressly (and explicitly) designed to cater to the area’s predominately Muslim population.

    Stupid Christian WalMart, trying to disguise their hatred of Islam via accommodating Muslim customers. I’m certainly not fooled!

  19. rdldr1 says:

    On one of the few times Ive been to a Walmart, I saw a Muslim woman in full hijab – covered head to toe, with only her eyes exposed. Yes, its strange according to the American culture – but you dont have to make a snide comment about it. I wouldnt blame Walmart, its more the fault of the idiot who said it.

  20. humphrmi says:

    @cmdr.sass: That type of thinking is why we still have a huge problem with hatred in this country.

    “It’s not hatred, it was just a joke, son.”

    I’ll be glad when everyone from that era is dead (of old age of course) so that we can start reprogramming kids that just because someone looks different than you, it’s OK to make jokes about them. As long as you regret it later.

  21. JackSparks says:

    @phelander: Do you really own the trademark to “BUSHCO”? You must be very, very rich.

  22. gamehendge2000 says:

    Did they ask to see her receipt on the way out?

  23. KyleOrton says:

    @BayStateDarren: Absolutely. Just one idiot.

    I took my friend shopping for Christmas presents while he was undergoing chemo and needed to wear a mask. The kid at Target made some snotty comment about him “being afraid of our germs.” I have a feeling the cashier in this article was an ignorant prick and didn’t have the same reaction as the Target checker did when my friend explained it.

    I was mad as hell but bit my tongue because I don’t think a 17 year old could have felt lower.

    Oh, and I never boycotted Target.

  24. JackSparks says:

    @phelander: What about “BUSHITLER,” “CHIMPEROR BUSH I,” and “HITLERBURTON”? That’s like owning Park Place, Boardwalk, and running the bank. You know, like those NEW YORK MONEYMEN(tm).

  25. nequam says:

    So funny that people are drawing a line between this clerk and Walmart. Whereas, in this forum, poor customer service by a single employee usually damns the corporation.

    “WUTZZ?? APPLE STORE AKS FOR I.D. FOR DA CREDITZ CARD?? THATS WHY MACBOOK AIR SUXR!!!!”

    This is a Walmart problem because the poor woman was insulted by an employee while in their store, giving them her business.

  26. @cmdr.sass: Islamic Fundamentalism is serious business, after all.

    As is Christian fundamentalism, Jewish fundamentalism, Atheist fundamentalism [I'm not entirely sure that we our own form of fundamentalism, but for the sake of argument I'll assume we do], etc.

  27. backbroken says:

    So…did she rob the place or not? The story doesn’t say.

  28. pigeonpenelope says:

    @BayStateDarren: yes, i did correct your use of “ain’t.” i felt using that word wasn’t fitting when defending walmart. it took the educated tone right out of your sentences. i may not have approached it correctly but i had good intentions.

    also, i still disagree with you. walmart is responsible for their employees. if they hire someone who is apparently intolerant and subscribes to the myth of the ethnic stereotype, that individual’s words is as good as coming from the mouth of walmart itself.

    maybe put this in a different scenario. lets say you have a kid. you bring your kid into a grocery store and let him run free. your kid breaks some glass jars. are you not responsible? certainly you should be. your kid was not disciplined nor were you monitoring him. in this way, walmart is responsible for its employees.

    i’m really tired. did that make sense?

  29. XopherMV says:

    The political correctness of this article and the comments are stifling. Yes, let’s all forget the First Amendment and the fact that the cashier had the RIGHT to say what she did. Let’s totally subvert one of the foundations of our society for the religious sensibilities of a violent, racist, and sexist religion that doesn’t care one iota for our First Amendment.

  30. pigeonpenelope says:

    @nequam: yay! someone else that sees with with a similar pov.

  31. pigeonpenelope says:

    @XopherMV: time, place and manner. there is a clause in the first amendment that does discuss what you may and may not say. the cashier was actually in the wrong and her actions was not protected under the constitution.

    if that was the case, i could tell all my customers to fuck off and then sue my employer for violating my constitutional rights.

    believe it or not but we do not have the freedom of speech you think we do. canadians have far more freedoms when it comes to speech.

  32. JackSparks says:

    @XopherMV: Just so we’re clear, the First Amendment protects citizens from state action (either at the federal or, well, state level). It does not apply – in any form – to private actors. I can get fired tomorrow for saying something offensive, stupid, etc., and that’s not a violation of my First Amendment rights – that’s business. The cashier had no more of a “right” to make that crack than I do to tell my secretary she has a “nice ass.”

  33. pigeonpenelope says:

    @pigeonpenelope: also, the first amendment does discuss where and when and how you can say what you say. for instance, you may not yell “fire” in a crowded theatre when there is not one. duh.

  34. pigeonpenelope says:

    @JackSparks: okay you completely one upped me. you’re more right than i am.

  35. JackSparks says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Ask Mark Steyn how much more “freedom of speech” Canadians have as compared to Americans. Last time I checked, we don’t have “Human Rights Commissions” empowered by the state to punish people for political speech. You might want to check out our Bill of Rights. Unless Phelander has it trademarked, I’m pretty sure Canada is welcome to copy it.

  36. JackSparks says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Now I feel like an ass, but I stand by my comments re Canadian v. American speech while at the same time appreciating the compliment. :-)

  37. StarWhores says:

    I wonder if everyone in that Douchey checkers trailer park is as insensitive as she was.
    You really have to be a open mouth first think second kind of idiot to say something like that.

  38. vastrightwing says:

    Let me yell this again very loud, because people seem to forget: Islam is the religon of PEACE! PEACE! I say. Got it? I don’t know why people have to yell this ad nauseum that Islam is the religon of PEACE! but it is becuse… well… because they scream it out loud over and over… except at Wal*Mart… I think.

  39. JackSparks says:

    @StarWhores: That’s awesome. This is literally the first time ever I’ve heard someone suggest that WalMart checkers live in trailer parks. Are you sure that Phelander hasn’t trademarked that joke?

    And what’s next? African-American WalMart stockers eat Skittles and pork rinds for lunch, all washed down with a cool grape soda?

    Racist.

  40. pigeonpenelope says:

    @JackSparks: i live so close to the canadian border that i practically live in canada.of the accounts from my experience being exposed to canadian media, and my canadian friends, they are not allowed to speak with racism and intolerance, they are allowed to question their goverment. any canadian is welcome to critique what i have just said.

  41. chuloallen says:

    @vastrightwing: just because you say so doesn’t make it so

  42. Moosehawk says:

    @BayStateDarren: Wal-mart doesn’t necessarily have a high line when hiring employees. They’ll practically hire anything that walks and talks from what I’ve seen.

    So yes, I am blaming Wal-Mart.

  43. katylostherart says:

    that’s what she gets for living being anywhere near utah…

  44. katylostherart says:

    being* christ almighty i cannot think today.

  45. Jericho114 says:

    I didn’t find the comment racist and if I were in the womens shoes, that is a comment I could easily laugh off if it REALLY offended me.

    Go cry about it babies, the associate had no intention of racism and was only making what they thought was a witty joke. How is that racist or offensive? Perhaps if she divulged how they had thought every muslim wore the Hijab or veil in an effort to thwart people from knowing their identity while they stole things but they didnt.

    Whatever though, I guess some of us were born with tough skin while others just go through life bitching and complaining when someone pokes a little fun. Glad I can handle some jokes cause’ I’d probably have killed myself by now if I let something so MINOR like that bother me to the point of making a formal complaint.

  46. pigeonpenelope says:

    @JackSparks: i appreciate your criticism. please feel free challenge me. you have a lot to offer to help me understand.

  47. witeowl says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Um… “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

    Where is this “clause” of which you speak?

    Beyond that, with apologies to Monty Python, the First Amendment don’t enter into it! Wal-mart has the right (and responsibility) to discipline this employee so as to create employees which uphold their desired image. This disciplinary action will probably involve sensitivity training, arguably a fate worse than death.

  48. JackSparks says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Fair enough, but I think there’s a fine line between banning racially intolerant speech and banning “political” speech. But so long as we agree the checker had – and exercised – his right to be an asshole, that’s good enough for me.

  49. pigeonpenelope says:

    @Jericho114: i dont’ have a nice way to say this. you’re very ignorant. read some more and then come back to this and comment.

  50. @pigeonpenelope: if they hire someone who is apparently intolerant and subscribes to the myth of the ethnic stereotype, that individual’s words is as good as coming from the mouth of walmart itself.
    I don’t know anything about this individual’s normative apparent behavior, but I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he acts like your average person and ain’t not unlikely to act in a manner which would foreshadow his descent into insulting customers, therefore Wal-Mart could not have performed any act in furtherance of his dispicable utterance. I also don’t think the comparison to an unrestrained child who causes property damage is quite fair either, because that sort of behavior from most children is pretty much a foregone conclusion.

  51. forgottenpassword says:

    wait… was this an actual face-veil or one of those hoods (hajib… whatever)?

    Meh… it was a bad joke. If it had been a guy in winter with a skimask on & the same was said , noone would have given a flying fig. If I walked in with a condom over my head with eyeholes ,should I be upset if someone brought attention to it?

    What was the intent here? Was it intended as some racial insult? Or was it just a bad joke?

    btw… Isnt illegal in some jurisdictions to walk around in public with a mask on (or anything that covers the majority of your face)?

  52. Jericho114 says:

    @forgottenpassword: Bad joke.. but apparently, everyone hear is perfect and somehow assumes they meant the worst. Looking for something for free obviously alot of people here seem to masters of getting stuff for free by bitching

  53. @All those talking about good ol’ Amendment number 1: it’s case law which allows restrictions, not the original test itself.

  54. freedom69 says:

    I don’t think that the comment made had anything to do with the fact that she was wearing head scarf. However I am sure that the customer over reacted to what was clearly a joke. I think that it was more to do with perception. Since 9/11 Muslims feel attacked so any comment would have been wrong. But i dont think it should not be taken so seriously. It could have been a bad comment made to anyone.Just a bad choice of words is all. futhermore since 9/11 i am sure many of us have made comments just not loud enough for someone to hear and rip our whole lives apart for.

  55. pigeonpenelope says:

    @JackSparks: certainly the line between banning racially intolerant speech and banning political speech is extremely fine. in fact, it really is almost scary. the checker did not violate any u.s. law so on that premise i will agree with you. @witeowl: time, place and manner… it makes libel and slander illegal, it takes away the free speech of students in school, it prohibits certain types of protest… here are a couple of links to make you feel dumb: [www.firstamendmentcenter.org] [www.law.umkc.edu]

  56. forgottenpassword says:

    @JackSparks:

    That store BETTER carry pork products! Otherwise I will file a descrimination lawsuit! lol

  57. burgundyyears says:

    CAIR specializes in grievance theater like this. They are snake oil salesmen of the very highest order. The fact that it took this long for them to dig something like that up shows how rare it truly is.

  58. pigeonpenelope says:

    @BayStateDarren: @All those talking about good ol’ Amendment number 1: it’s case law which allows restrictions, not the original test itself. i agree with you here. it is case law.

    i still disagree with you about responsibility. it sounds like you’re coming from the assumption that because walmart did not train the checker to assume that behavior then walmart is therefore not responsible. there was a case where denny’s was sued because a waiter refused to provide service to an african american. denny’s lost. if we’re to use case studies (and i’m not spending time in the law library to reference this case), then per my case, because the courts found denny’s at fault, so would the courts find walmart at fault.

  59. dhemke says:

    It’s all fun and games until she comes back with a bomb strapped to her chest.

    ^^– see that would be an insensitive joke

  60. morganlh85 says:

    @Canoehead: Haven’t you noticed that the photos they use rarely actually have anything to do with the actual post right? I mean, I don’t think they are implying that kittens are evil, but they use those in a LOT of their photos. Get over it.

  61. pigeonpenelope says:

    @witeowl: hell did you see my grammar when i replied to baystatedarren? talk about glass house. can you catch what my grammar mistake was?

  62. pigeonpenelope says:

    @pigeonpenelope: a reply to me will go unanswered. i’m off to bed.

  63. witeowl says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Nope, not feeling dumb. You said that there was a clause. There isn’t. There is, however, as BayStateDarren pointed out, case law which has established the restrictions that you’re referencing. Case law does not equal “a clause“.

    To claim that there’s “a clause in the First Amendment” is not only oversimplistic and incorrect, but smacks of ignorance and hurts your argument.

  64. econobiker says:

    What does that woman do at banks which have the “no sunglasses, no hats, no helmets” sign posted on their doors?

    Is this the next really great bank robber outfit? Wear the hajib veil and get away since the bank cannot refuse to let you enter due to religious issues.

  65. witeowl says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Nope, nor do I care. My point was simply that you were criticizing someone else’s use of dialect while you were choosing to make glaring errors yourself. Hypocrisy at its finest… as amusing as it was.

  66. Canerican says:

    Hey, the perpetually offended will always be offended – its what they do.

    Wal Mart is the target of perpetual victims (CAIR) in this case.

    If a Christian made this big of a fuss it would never get covered, yet our Muslim overlords seem to be capable of making us dhimmis, while making US feel bad for THEM, for refusing to change our lifestyles to accommodate their religion.

    Read the first amendment, no one has to do a thing for Christians (and you can insult Christianity all you want) and no one has to accommodate the Muslims. Wal Mart felt they did something wrong and they apologized, but in a court case, Wal Mart wins this hands down.

    Like I said – we are being turned into dhimmis (and this is an acceptable term – used in Islam, so don’t accuse me xenophobia, or religious intolerance)

    I feel that every religion deserves its right to exist, but I also agree with freedom of speech (which is totally incompatible with Islam)

  67. witeowl says:

    @witeowl: To clarify my “Nope”. I didn’t catch it because I try to read for content, not edit for gotchas. If I wanted to play grammar wars, as fun as it sounds, I’d be at another site.

  68. forgottenpassword says:

    @econobiker:

    It’d be perfect! You could hide an LA robbers’ style bullet-proof suit & automatic assault rifle under one of those personal tents & if anyone gives you grief about it… you can sue!

    @dhemke:

    I lol’ed. Guess I am a bad person. :(

  69. amoeba says:

    I live pretty close to Riverdale, UT. The customer service in EVERY STORE is bad (mostly low income residents and Hispanics). No wonder why they closed Macy’s. Anyway, I live in a college town and pretty much I see so many people from around the world (Asians and Europeans), but lately I haven’t seen any Muslims (women wearing veils) in here. Bizarre!

    Anyway, It is Wal-Mart responsibility to take the blame, even the janitor is a rep. of WM.

  70. dandd says:

    I would think the proper thing to say is “don’t blow me up.” If you are going to say racist things, at least get them right. Are walmart employees too stupid to be proper racists?

  71. pfeng says:

    @forgottenpassword: If I, a female, walk into a store wearing pants and with a short haircut, should I be upset if I somebody tells me I’m crossdressing? (Spoiler alert: I should be. Nobody deserves to have an employee’s idea of what’s “normal” pressed on me while I’m trying to transact business.)

    Regarding your btw — Maybe (and I stress MAYBE) wearing something over your face is disallowed in a bank. (I’ve seen notices in my bank’s lobby which request customers remove baseball caps and sunglasses before entering; no mention of hijab/headscarves/veils, though). I can’t think of any other situation in which that could possibly be considered illegal, especially not in an entire “jurisdiction.” What would you do in cold weather, arrest people wearing scarves over their mouths?

  72. BugMeNot2 says:

    I’m not supposed to laugh, right?

  73. forgottenpassword says:

    @pfeng:

    many places (in the US) have laws against covering your face in public. Be it with facepaint, skimask, scarf, halloween mask or any other attempt to keep your face concealed. Most of these laws are considered “selective enforcement” laws in which cops can choose to enforce the law if they feel it is needed (or if they just want to harrass you).

  74. Parting says:

    @Canerican: This article is not about xenophobia, it’s about piss-poor customer service.

    It’s like telling a lady with a broken nose : ”Wow, what a bar fight!”, when you don’t even know her name.

    It’s not illegal, is just really rude, no class, and bad customer service. Very bad sense of humor is = bad customer service.

    Well you know, you get what you pay for ;) Always low prices!

  75. XopherMV says:

    The last time I checked, Islam is a RELIGION, not a RACE.

    Muslims are every race under the sun: black, white, Asian Indian, Chinese, etc.

    It is IMPOSSIBLE to be racist against Islam or against Muslims.

  76. arilvdc says:

    @XopherMV: islam is not the only violent (crusades, anyone?), racist (KKK?) and sexist (too many references for this one) religion around. Just like Christianity, Islam has it’s fundamentalists who make the whole religion look bad. The whole covering women thing isn’t even in the koran.

  77. StevieD says:

    Oh Jesus Christ.

  78. BeFrugalNotCheap says:

    What about that ass-clown that our beloved patron saint of snark and consumer crusader Vince Ferrari had to deal with? That operator was representing AOL therefore AOL is partly culpable. Sorry, but I consider Wal-Mart at fault as well as the cretin that made the remark. I just can’t believe the employee was “disciplined” and not fired.

  79. jakkyl says:

    Sounds like freedom of speech to me!

  80. attackgypsy says:

    @witeowl:

    No, not sensitivity training. It was a cashier. They got fired, most likely.

  81. rjhiggins says:

    There’s so much ignorance here I don’t know where to begin, so just a few comments:

    1. The “can’t-take-a-joke” argument is the usual refuge of lily-white males who don’t have a clue about what’s it’s like to live in a sexist, racist world.

    2. Walmart certainly has responsibility in that this individual is all too typical of too many Walmart employees. If you’re going to hire low-lifes and pay them squat this is the kind of thing that’s going to happen.

    3. “…many places (in the US) have laws against covering your face in public.” Cite such laws, please. I’ll help you out: They don’t exist.

    4. @JackSparks: Don’t make it sound as if Walmart stocked that store because as a good citizen it magnanimously wanted to serve the Islam population. It saw a business opportunity — which is fine, but don’t suggest anything more.

    4. jericho114: Come back when you grow up.

  82. Steve Trachsel, Ace says:

    @rjhiggins: You call others ignorant and demand they “grow up” but call all walmart employees “low lifes”. Im sure most of their employees are decent people just trying to survive.

    Just because someone works a low level job doesnt make them a lesser person then you. I see this constantly on this site.

  83. cde says:

    A front line employee is not really representative of the entire company. A manager, or even assistant manager, is. Unless is Best Buy and its “managers”. Best Buy can kiss dirty assholes.

  84. Morticia says:

    I don’t think Jericho needs to grow up, he seem to have it in perspective.

    What if the lad had said that comment to her on the bus? What would she have done then, without having an employer to go complaining to? The woman should learn how to handle such comments herself, there and then on the spot. Like most of us try to do when someone puts their foot in their mouth, or intentionally insult us.

    Employers can put staff through all the sensitivity training, health & safety, and customer service courses in the world, there will still always be staff that are clumsy physically and orally.

    I’m surprised this made the media.

  85. MaliBoo Radley says:

    As far as I know, when you’re at work, you’re representing your company. As a cashier, it’s your job to smile, ring up items, accept payment etc. It is NOT your job try out your new Don Rickles act. Anyone who has ever had a job in the service industry should know that Job #1 is NOT INSULTING YOUR CUSTOMERS! It’s just common sense. You have every right to THINK that the customer is a idiot/slob/moron/terrorist … but you don’t have the right to SAY it .. at least not if you want to keep your job.

    Simple as that.

  86. Morticia says:

    Well Prince Phillip needs to be fired then, he is always insulting people.

  87. Lin-Z [linguist on duty] says:

    @SuffolkHouse:
    there are a few different things that we usually use “veil” to refer to
    hijab covers the hair and top of the head
    niqab covers the head and falls down over the chest
    burqa covers everything, including the face.

    it could have been any of these! chaos in the language!

  88. stopNgoBeau says:

    @Canoehead: Don’t get all bent up about the picture. They use this picture a lot when they talk about Wal-Mart, and most of the posts don’t have anything to do with religion. Its just a funny picture.

    The photo is actually of the Siegen Lane Wal-Mart just outside of Baton Rouge, LA. The large evangelical church on the other side of the interstate errected those three crosses. They are about a half a mile away and are still that friggin huge when viewed from the Wal-Mart parking lot.

    We call it the Holy Wal-Mart.

  89. MaliBoo Radley says:

    @Morticia:

    Bah, he’s been dead for years … it’s just that no one has noticed :)

  90. jakkyl says:

    What do you think would happen to me if I went over to Iran and wore a tee-shirt with President Bush’s face on it?

    Nobody is saying she doesn’t have a right to wear the veil. But it’s her duty to know the score if she’s going to do something like that. When in Rome, dress like a Roman…..

  91. stopNgoBeau says:

    @rjhiggins: It actually is against the law in the State of Louisiana to unreasonably cover your face while conducting yourself in public. We had a football player on the LSU team get arrested for walking around campus wearing a ski mask. He wasn’t doing anything illegal, but it sure did look suspicious. They booked him, and he ended up paying a small fine.

    That being said, the law does make provisions for reasonable coverage, such as climate, religious, and medical reasons.

  92. Morticia says:

    ROFL radleyas!

  93. MaliBoo Radley says:

    @jakkyl:

    What does an American dress like? What does an American look like? What colour is an American? What is an American’s ethnic heritage? What religion does an American follow?

    As for the Bush t-shirt thing .. well, I think that would be offensive anywhere :) But what is so offensive to you about a muslim woman wearing the veil? Are you offended by Orthodox Jewish women, some Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mennonites, the Amish et al. covering their hair and wearing modest dress? Does a Sikh wearing his/her turban offend? How about a Jewish man in a Yalmuke?

    I would hope that by reading up to this point you realise how silly what you said is …

  94. forgottenpassword says:

    @rjhiggins:
    “There’s so much ignorance here I don’t know where to begin, so just a few comments:
    3. “…many places (in the US) have laws against covering your face in public.” Cite such laws, please. I’ll help you out: They don’t exist.”

    Here ya go….

    Just a few examples after a quick search….

    [In 1845, the State of New York passed a law which forbade the wearing of masks. It authorized the pursuit and arrest of anyone who "having his face painted, discolored, covered or concealed, or being otherwise disguised, in a manner calculated to prevent him from being identified, shall appear in any road or public highway, or in any field, lot, wood, or enclosure." It was originally adopted to thwart armed insurrections by Hudson Valley tenant farmers who dressed and painted themselves as Native Americans to attack law enforcement officers over rent issues. The law was then shelved for most of the 20th Century until 1965, when it was used to criminalize transvestites and drag queens who wore too much make-up for the authorities to bear.]

    In virginia its illegal for anyone over 16 to wear a mask in public ( [leg1.state.va.us] )

    There you go… two quick examples.

    Note: MOST anti-mask laws were created to thwart the KKK years & years ago and are still on the books and could conceivably be used against anyone.

    There are SO MANY laws in this country that you could probably find ANY activity that is illegal in SOME city,county,state on the law books somewhere. Whether or not they are actively enforced is a different matter. Usually they arent until a public official or a cop wants to use it against someone who pissed them off (case in point: NY using the old 1800s antimask law to harrass tranvestites in the 1960s).

  95. jakkyl says:

    @radleyas: you can pull the wool (or veil) over your eyes if you wish. Last time AMERICANS did that we had a couple of buildings fall in New York (Maybe you read something about it).

    Actually my point about the Bush shirt was not really addressed by you (other than a very predictable cheap shot). But you know what, I’ll play along. Forget the Bush shirt. What kind of abuse do you think I’d be subjecting myself to if I wore a tee-shirt with a Cross on it. Or how about a tee-shirt with the Star of David on it? It doesn’t even have to be Iran….how about our ‘friends’ in Pakistan? We saw their ‘fair’ treatment of Daniel Berg.

    But see here in America we’ve had some brave men and women that have fought and served in the Military to ensure that we as Americans can say the things we want (Especially within our own borders). Should this idiot kid have said what he said to this lady? probably not. But does he have the RIGHT to? YES. Just as this lady has the right to wear the veil in the first place. But as I’ve said before, if she’s going to wear the veil, she’d better know the score. It’s like driving your car in downtown Manhattan and being pissed because there’s traffic.

  96. WraithSama says:

    The First Amendment protects the idiot cashier from being charged criminally for saying something stupid, not from having a civil suit filed against him… at least in theory, anyway.

    Problem is, almost anything you say that insults/offends someone these days could have you potentially charged with a hate crime. Freedom of speech no longer really exists. You’re allowed to say anything you want… as long as it doesn’t offend someone, somewhere, somehow.

    Hell, people are even being sued for something as benign as creating a website saying they don’t like a product or service. Do they have a legitimate reason for not liking it? Doesn’t matter! They’ve offended someone and now they must pay for it.

    America is turning into a nation of pansies who are afraid to speak out for fear of being revenged upon for their beliefs, whether misguided or legitimate.

  97. Jericho114 says:

    @rjhiggins: It’s pretty offensive that you’re acting so immature as to tell me I need to grow up because my “opinion’s” differ, and therefore aren’t worthy to stand up to yours? Oh great one, please could you enlighten me with all your wisdoms of the world. /sarcasm
    Or maybe I’ll just suck it up and move along.

    “The “can’t-take-a-joke” argument is the usual refuge of lily-white males who don’t have a clue about what’s it’s like to live in a sexist, racist world.”

    “If you’re going to hire low-lifes and pay them squat this is the kind of thing that’s going to happen.”

    Nice job making yourself out to look like a complete ass. There was more racism and hate in those two statements than in the Wal-mart employees remark. Not to mention the second point has nothing to do with this issue, it was ONE person not the whole store.

    I just don’t find what was said to the lady an insult to her religion whatsoever, and certainly don’t think it was meant to be taken as such. Lame joke, yes. But like I said maybe me, and everyone I know are just very tolerant people and see the funny side of things all the time, this… definitely not worth the hassle.

  98. Jcakes says:

    Canoebreath: call me kah-razy, but I’d bet a donut that the jackanape ringing the woman up probably calls his old self a Christian.

    Good for Walmartland for apologizing. I hope they realize that overt stupidity shouldn’t be on the job description.

    Can we make this into a sticky for all comments sections?

    “The “can’t-take-a-joke” argument is the usual refuge of lily-white males who don’t have a clue about what’s it’s like to live in a sexist, racist world.”

    The pathos of their lilly-white pain has been lost on me.

  99. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    @Canerican: “Muslim overlords” only because no ‘Christian’ nation has that much OIL.
    @pfeng: “arrest people with scarves over their mouths?” Most banks have heating.
    The bank thing is a security issue I have no problem with. If they won’t let you in with a veil on, patronize another bank.
    As far as laws about hiding your face…when I visit other countries, I am expected to follow their laws, yes? If you can’t follow the laws here, either leave or get elected president!!

  100. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    I’m sorry that should have been get anointed president.

  101. mammalpants says:

    what the story failed to mention was that the veiled woman was also buying a 12 pack of dale earnhardt tumblers.

  102. akyiba says:

    href=”#c4653345″>econobiker: Some idot has already done it in Philadelphia some years ago.

  103. akyiba says:

    @jakkyl: You mean dress like an Italian.

  104. akyiba says:

    Who came up with this whole thing that Muslim women wear veils? Growing up people would as do you ever wear a veil? I used to think the veil was for brides and widows so heck no I don’t wear a veil. After a couple of times being asked that question I figured out that what they were talking about.

    As far as this story goes, I say some people have thick skin and others don’t. I’ve had worse said to me by people as young as six, but I either keep it moving or engage in some sort of dialogue to make sure I can educate as many misinformed people as possible.

  105. backbroken says:

    I don’t understand all the folks claiming that this is a First Amendment issue. I refuse to believe that Consumerist readers are so ignorant of how their rights work.

  106. heycorey says:

    If I had no sense of humor, I would long ago have committed suicide … or at least tried to starve myself … wait … what?

    ~Mahatma Gandhi

  107. darkened says:

    I didn’t see anyone else put this out there but what if the cashier actually felt they were wearing a hood and really thought they might get held up…

  108. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    So all people who insult muslims are Christians, per your graphic?

    @Canoehead: They use that photo a lot and, as this article was about Wal-mart and religion, it made sense to use it here. I doubt they’re trying to imply that the employee in question was Christian. This happened in Utah. The photo was taken in Louisiana.

  109. Japheaux says:

    Oh, I thought you said ‘muslin;’ they have rolls of that back in the craft section. By the way, any radical wouldn’t ‘stick you up,’ they just lop off your head with a ginzu from aisle 34.

  110. Aphex242 says:

    Yeah this isn’t really on Wal-Mart… but the picture is perfect, too.

  111. arch05 says:

    @XopherMV: If you’re joking, it was a stupid joke. If not, you’re a complete & total fucking moron.

  112. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    So many of the comments here need to be flagged. Can we not have a post with the word Muslim or Islam in it without getting the bigoted remarks?

    This is ridiculous. If she had a mole on her face and the cashier made an insult about that no one would be defending the cashier. But since the insult was directed at Islam suddenly it’s First Amendment this and crybaby that.

    …the cashier had the RIGHT to say what she did.
    Wal-mart also has the right to discipline the cashier for saying it. Just because you can’t be arrested for saying it doesn’t mean you’re protected from any and all consequences resulting from what you say.

    If it had been a guy in winter with a skimask on & the same was said , noone would have given a flying fig. If I walked in with a condom over my head with eyeholes ,should I be upset if someone brought attention to it?
    A veil is neither a ski mask nor a condom. At least with the ski mask the comment would have actually made sense since criminals do wear ski masks to hide their face while robbing stores.

    The woman should learn how to handle such comments herself, there and then on the spot.
    Which she did by making a complaint.

    But as I’ve said before, if she’s going to wear the veil, she’d better know the score.
    But employees who insult their customers don’t? Somehow I doubt she was horribly surprised when the cashier said what they did but you don’t have to be surprised by something to be insulted by it.

  113. apotheosis says:

    At least she didn’t say “please don’t blow me up.”

    Perspective, people.

  114. arch05 says:

    @Rectilinear Propagation: Completely agreed. WTH, Ben? You kept a good rein on the comments for a long time, & now they’ve all just gone to shit.

  115. The Porkchop Express says:

    @pigeonpenelope: he may not have been “apparently insensitive”, he could have been the most tolerant and sensitive person in the world during interview and hiring.

    Most asshats don’t show it until given a real chance.

  116. Franklin Comes Alive! says:

    Is this the Consumerist or Little Green Footballs? It’s hard to tell from these comments.

  117. LucyInTheSky says:

    @morganlh85: you beat me to it.

  118. Zzzzzz someone call the PC police! What happened to walking away and not patronizing a store you don’t like anymore.

    American is becoming the biggest pile of mealy mouthed people. Crying foul any time someone says something that offends them. Are people afraid to say “screw you, asshole” and tell people like it is?

  119. MaliBoo Radley says:

    @jakkyl:

    You’re paranoid, creepy and frightening.

    This country was built on diversity. You can’t dump that idea now .. there would be no future for us.

    Oh … never go to Dearborn, Michigan … it’d blow your mind.

  120. tinmanx says:

    Something similar was said to me at a library by a librarian when I walked in with my hood and face mask. I found it funny because who would stick up a library?

  121. MaliBoo Radley says:

    @jakkyl:

    Also, are you saying that because you might be treated badly in Iran (or another country like it), that we should stoop to that level and abuse people here? That seems to be what you’re saying.

    I bet you’re a Christian .. I can feel the compassion.

  122. arch05 says:

    @radleyas: “I bet you’re a Christian .. I can feel the compassion.”

    Way to obliterate any point your comment may have had.

  123. It comes down to basic RESPECT and the misconceptions people have of any group other than their own. I bought a house in the hood, yeah there are some major jackass black people who live in the projects nearby, but I have some of the best next door neighbors ever who are black and latino.

    Religion is no different since we have bozos hailing from every possible faith, either blowing stuff up, shooting OBGYN docs, et al.

    I’m not sure how some people live life anymore always looking to be offended in some way.

  124. MaliBoo Radley says:

    @arch05:

    Sorry, but it’s more than likely true.

  125. mrbiggsndatx says:

    @ canoehead: If you wanna bash consumerist, go over to CONGLOMERIST.com! Learn to spell “Making” correctly if you want to talk shit!

  126. arch05 says:

    @radleyas: Doesn’t make you any less of a bigoted generalist.

  127. SacredByte says:

    I seem to be in the minority here, but I side with the employee here. If he/she had said “Please don’t blow me up!” that would have been highly insensitive, and then the case would be clearly against the employee–BUT he/she didn’t.

    The employee said (allegedly) “Don’t hold me up (rob me).” This is just the employee trying to break the ice. Admitadely, it wasn’t the right way to do it, but it clearly wasn’t meant to be offensive.

    As for America, we got where we are by INTEGRATING. Muslims who do this are NOT integrating. My grandparents (and grandparents who were Russian/Irish immigrants, respectively, to this country) didn’t run around dressed like cossiacks/celts–THEY INTEGRATED.

    @XopherMV: Your comment is irrelevant, but your video is spot on. Thanks for sharing it.

  128. kbarrett says:

    I am offended by the Hijab. They represent Islam’s subjugation of women.

    They should be mocked. And wearing one would be perfect cover for an armed robber … the clerk was right to be nervous. Walmart should simply post signs forbidding customers who conceal their faces from entering the premises.

    And I am an atheist, BTW. As far as I am concerned, all religions are silly.

  129. TheBigLewinski says:

    Awww, did someone’s feelings get hurt again? Stop the presses, we gotta let the world know… The terorists will and are exploiting our proclivity for polictical correctness. STOP IT PEOPLE! A joke is a joke, it wasn’t ‘mean’ spirited. I remember when we were kids telling ethnic jokes but that it taboo in todays’ world. It’s to bad we take this shit too seriously and can’t even laugh at ourselves anymore. What a world we live in.

  130. nuttycakes says:

    @Canerican: Oh please. How on earth have you had to “change [y]our lifestyle to accomodate” Muslims? Are we making you take Fridays off and work on Sundays? Have we taken away your precious pork?

    Frankly, I am tired of anything related to Muslims turning into an Islam-bashing contest on comments. @vastrightwing: I know your tone was meant to be sarcastic, but Islam is a religion of peace. Muslims believe in the Bible and the Torah, in Jesus and Moses and all the other Abrahamic prophets. So before you start bashing Islam, why don’t you remember that true Muslims actually respect what you believe because it’s a part of their religion? And any Muslim who tells you otherwise hasn’t actually read the Qu’ran.

  131. nuttycakes says:
  132. rochec says:

    @Canoehead:

    What? A radical atheist? He wrote a book about what he thinks and that makes him a radical? So that would pretty much make anyone who’s vocal about their religious affiliation radical.

    The day you see Christopher Hitchens say something incredibly stupid like this will be the day the world ends.

    Sounds like you are a pretty uptight Christian by your outrage over a simple photo, so I’m not sure why I’m wasting my time responding to you at all. If it makes you feel any better, he’s got a pretty big problem with you too. The sad thing is he probably knows 10x as much about it as you.

  133. Roundonbothends says:

    Couldn’t been any case of thin skin involved here, could it? If the woman had laughed, this would have been a non-starter. Can’t make jokes about this? What is it, related to Scientology?

  134. caranguejo says:

    @Canoehead: Basically, Hitchens’ view of Islam is based on the fact that he feels their organized religion has contributed to a majority of problems in the modern world. He considers the group to be “fascism with an Islamic face.” But he also feels that ALL religions have played their part in making the world a very unpeaceful place throughout history.

    Regardless, the comment shouldn’t have been made whether she was Muslim, Christian, black, white, Spanish, Martian or anything. Ridiculous. I also agree with the fact that it’s not WalMart’s fault, since it is illegal to ask someone if they’re prejudiced as a condition of employment. The cashier is just a complete moron.

  135. SacredByte says:

    @nuttycakes:

    The problem with many Islamic zealots is that they have NOT read the Qu’ran; They believe what their clerics tell them to.

    That said, Islam is NOT a “religion of peace.” Rioting over a cartoon does not indicate peaceful, or even rational behavior to me.

    Before you (any of you) start spouting about Islam being a “religion of peace” please go to the middle east (by which I mean Pakistan, Iran, Syria, etc.) and walk around telling Muslims that you are a Jew. See how they react.

    A more correct statement is: “Islam is a religion of [blowing their enemies to] peace[es].”

  136. witeowl says:

    @attackgypsy: I don’t know. When I was a taxi driver (and really, is there a more disposable employee?), an idiot coworker refused to allow a blind man’s service dog into the car. He had to go to ADA training before he could resume work; he wasn’t fired.

    (Oh, and yes, the company could have been held liable for this driver’s ignorance if the customer had decided to pursue it beyond a formal complaint.) Of course, that’s the ADA, not mild and questionable hate speech.

  137. @SuffolkHouse: (Someone may have already answered this, but:)

    Hijab means “cover” generally and technically refers to modesty and appropriateness in behavior, clothing, the whole 9 yards. It’s typically used in the west to mean the CLOTHING part, most specifically the head covering (as that is unusual in the west so the most-often remarked upon), but it can refer to any particular form of cover, from scarves to burqas. Typically if the hijab is important to the story, you’ll want to specify — the story here has a somewhat different flavor based on whether she’s in modest western clothing with a head-scarf, or in a full-on burqa.

  138. @jakkyl: You know, just because other countries are bigoted assholes that repress various religions doesn’t mean we have to sink to their level. I think America’s better than that. But if the only way to make you feel better is to become that which you despise, well, more power to you. If you lie down with dogs, you get up with fleas. Congrats on becoming just as intolerant and hateful as those you hate for their intolerance and hatefulness.

  139. sarahandthecity says:

    @Canoehead: Maybe you’re new here (and judging by your “new headline,” to the English language as well), but that is the standard Wal-mart picture Consumerist has been using. Apparently the irony and subtle commentary of the implied “church of Wal-mart” sailed straight over your poor little offended head.

  140. e.varden says:

    @ChuckECheese:

    Re: “Right to left”:

    Can you be even more dense and unintelligible in your posting assholery?

    Go away.

    E.

  141. hexychick says:

    @Canoehead: you don’t think your comment is a bit of a kneejerk reaction? Way to be the pot calling the kettle black here.

  142. yetiwisdom says:

    Wal*Mart makes me sad.

  143. pigeonpenelope says:

    @witeowl: my argument still stands. it still works. your meager peddling at a word i used in order to compensate for your own lack of intelligence only makes you seem desperate. i myself made a good point that you didn’t know of and someone with more understanding of law was able to chide in and help. if your only contribution to a conversation is to throw out insults, maybe you should leave. someone needs a nap.

  144. innominate227 says:

    @cmdr.sass:

    I think the joke was she had on a black mask like a robber does. Not that she is going to kill him because shes a Muslim.

  145. witeowl says:

    @pigeonpenelope: Give me a break. You made a mistake. Own up to it.

    And if you’re looking for an insult count, you’ll win. Review my other posts if you want to know where I stand on this issue. The sad part is that we agree on the whole. You’re just too pissy to see it. Have a nice nap.

  146. toiletduck says:

    I wonder if the teller at the bank down the road said the same thing before she was robbed by a woman in a hijab…..

  147. Coyote says:

    Aside from all the American/Christian/Muslim/Islam arguments here the point I would like to bring up is the customer was an ass. It was a single off color comment. And if you look at where the story originated you’ll see that it was likely a reference to a cowboy/old timey bank robery with the face partialy covered with a bandana. Yes it does show short sighted-ness of the teller. But for love of god/allah/budha/FSM/xenu/whatever the customer should have to abide by our culture which used to be able to joke and have fun over being religiously devout. Its kind of why people moved to this country in the first place ya know….

  148. witeowl says:

    @Coyote: Yeah, and we used to also do great performances like blackface and call people funny little terms like porchmonkey and pickaninny. Ah…. those were the days. Oh, and we could joke about how the Jews had all the power and are all moneygrubbing hagglers. Yes, and we could use free speech to plainly tell someone that they weren’t wanted in our neighborhood with two pieces of wood and a little fire. Yes, those were the days.

    (For any sarcasm-impaired, the above paragraph is rife with it.)

    On a related note: when’s the last time any of you watched Blazing Saddles? We’ve come a long way, haven’t we?

  149. MightyCow says:

    That one comment is hardly an insult. If someone came in from the cold wearing a scarf around their face, the same comment wouldn’t be out of the question.

    It sounds pretty obviously like a light-hearted joke to me.

    Where’s the Council on Islamic-Humor Relations when we need them?

  150. uwouldntlikemewhenimangry says:

    The kid who said it is a clown. However, I bet he’s a half-way okay person. I am part Hispanic (and look mostly Hispanic). People like this kid aren’t usually the bad people. The people that scare me are the bright, educated people who have influence that smile to your face then stab you in your back. They are way more threatening and there are alot of them. Many play themselves off as progressives, open-minded, etc… I’ll take a misinformed, foot-in-mouth good-intentioned hillbilly anyday of the week over them.

  151. taka2k7 says:

    I’m more afraid of Fundamentalist Consumerists…

    @arilvdc: actually, the Koran calls for the Prophet Mohammed’s wives’s to be veiled, but no other women. It also states that there is no compulsion in religion. Much like many other religious texts, it appears to be self-contradictory in places.

    Employee was a dumb-ass. Sure Walmart apparently needs more robust customer courtesy training, but I don’t they are not responsible for the comment. Their response was appropriate and sufficient.

    I’m not a big fan of CAIR either. They specialize in being the victim and too often go over the top. If they stuck to their mission statement and stopped over-reacting, then stuff like this would be a local issue.