Restaurant Staff Make Facebook Meme Calling Native Americans Bad Tippers, Get Fired

(Facebook/Indian Country Today)

(Facebook/Indian Country Today)

Posting a Facebook meme mocking your customers: bad. Stepping into the global war regarding the subject of tipping when you work in a restaurant: worse. What elevated the actions of some employees of barbecue chain Famous Dave’s to social media infamy was the overt racism in their Facebook post, which joked about terrible tips during the United Tribes International Pow Wow.

The Pow Wow is a four-day Native American cultural festival held every year that draws tens of thousands of visitors. It includes a run, a golf tournament, and of course dance contests. Many of these guests evidently made their way to the local Famous Dave’s. The employees involved in the incident thought that it would be hilarious to make a joke sign complaining about the visitors’ tips. Making it worse, that “plea” came in the form of a classic cardboard panhandler’s sign, and a photo of a pouting staffer holding up the sign made its way to Facebook, angering…well, pretty much anyone who saw it.

The sign read, “Help I’m a server at Famous Dave’s on Pow Wow weekend! Anything helps! 5 cents 25 cents! It’s more than my tips.”

For her part, the woman in the picture claims that she didn’t make the sign. She says that the picture was sitting around as a joke, and a friend asked her to hold it up for a Snapchat photo. You know, Snapchat, that app where pictures are supposed to self-destruct.

“[O]ne of my friends that worked there as well came to visit, and she asked me to hold this poster up, so she could send a Snapchat,” she explained to a local TV station. Not that she’s ducking responsibility: “It was something I [chose] to do,” she said.

The whole mess is spectacularly insulting to the restaurant’s founder. Dave is, in fact, is Choctaw and Ojibwe, and once served as Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs in the federal government.

There’s a happy ending to this incident, though. Sort of. No, not just that the workers were swiftly fired. We’ve seen a lot of social media meltdowns in our day, and found the honest and blunt Facebook from the location’s owner to be heartfelt and refreshing. Here’s the unedited text, in case the post disappears:

Like many employeers we employee many people. People have opinions. Social media allows an outlet for these opinions.

When an employee decides to make an ass of him or herself they can now do it for all to see. Sadly, for reasons unkown to me, often times bitter employees also try to embarass the employers and taint the businesses where they work. Clearly a recent post by a now former employee fits this description.

I’m proud that since opening in 2004 we have served thousands and thousands of satisfied and happy guests. We will continue to do this for decades to come.

I’ve asked my social media person to no longer remove the obviously offensive and ridiculous post. I will allow the court court of public opinion to weigh in on this obviously offensive post.

Thanks for your past and continued support of Famous Dave’s.

Here’s a Tip: Shut Up! Server Fired for FB Post Saying Natives Bad Tippers [Indian Country Today]
Employees fired for Facebook post [Bismarck Tribune]