Liberals have always had a reputation for being notoriously bad tippers, but now claim they can no longer be called selfish Scrooges. They’re not really miserly pikers, they say; they’re social justice warriors, fighting racism.
Yep, tipping, they say, is racist.
Last year CreditCards.com reported that when it comes to tipping, service industry employees can generally count on Republicans and independents to be "the big tippers," as "compared to Democrats."
This year the same organization, CreditCards.com, revealed that 10 percent of millennials — those aged 18-37 and who predominately swing to the left — don’t bother leaving a tip at all.
This follows other studies that have consistently found that conservatives, even less financially secure ones, are more generous when it comes to giving to charity than their wealthy liberal neighbors. Even the liberal New York Times referred to liberals as "Bleeding heart tightwads."
Apparently tiring of being called money-grubbing skinflints, liberals are now promoting the idea that tipping is racist, and therefore, apparently, should be avoided at all costs.
"The custom of tipping in America was racist from the very beginning," a millennial says in one video in all seriousness, "and it goes all the way back to slavery."
Another young woman is more blunt. Her video begins, "Tipping is actually pretty f**ked up." She said that although the customer doing the tipping may feel as though he’s doing the right thing, in actuality, “the American tipping system was designed to keep freed slaves poor, and give rich, white people cheap labor.”
We have freed slaves walking the streets of America? Who knew?
As for that "cheap labor for rich white people" remark, CNBC reported that "around 60 percent of new restaurants fail within the first year. And nearly 80 percent shutter before their fifth anniversary."
The notion that leaving a gratuity for good service is "racist" may have had its roots in a "Mother Jones article published a few years back, in which Maddie Oatman described what she called "The Racist, Twisted History of Tipping."
Oatman wrote, "The restaurant association’s website claims the national median take-home pay for tipped servers is $16 to $22 an hour." But then she cautioned that "those same workers, according to the [Bureau of Labor Statistics], made just $9.01 an hour in 2014."
Yet earlier in the same piece she bemoaned that "the federal minimum wage is a paltry $7.25 an hour" — meaning the typical restaurant server earns $1.76 an hour more than the minimum.
That should be a ringing endorsement for capitalism, right? An instance of lowly restaurant servers using individual gumption to rise above mediocrity.
Wrong! Oatman described the $9.01 an hour as "poverty wages for a family of four and nowhere near enough to cover rent on the average two-bedroom apartment."
Beginning server and busboy positions were never meant to be a lifetime career move. They represent one’s first steps into the world of adulthood and accepting the responsibilities of showing up for work on time each day and giving it your all.
Oatman observed that the custom of tipping originated with the European practice "of slipping gratuities to their hosts’ servants" and was carried over to restaurant and Pullman rail employees in the United States — predominately black — who worked strictly for tips.
But she finished by saying that racism in the practice of tipping persists to this day, writing: "In one study, researchers at Cornell University and Mississippi College found that customers at an unnamed national chain restaurant—even the black customers—tipped white servers better than black servers."
But she misses the point. No matter what its roots, there’s nothing racist about tipping. You could say not tipping your server because you believe the practice is racist may be racist — especially if your server is a person of color.
There’s a joke about Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and the Rev. Al Sharpton breaking bread at a New York restaurant. The evening proceeds pleasantly until the waiter brings the check.
Silence descends on the table as each waits out the other to pick up the tab.
Hours later, the owner pays the bill and kicks them both out.
Bill Donohue, CEO of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights, says the left is simply naturally selfish. While they repeatedly champion the cause of the poor and downtrodden, they always expect someone else to pick up the tab — generally the government.
He said there was "no rational explanation why liberals should be able to claim the moral high ground in the war on poverty," given their own selfishness — but now they have one.
All this time we thought they were just cheap. It turns out they’re really fighting racism —or something.
Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to BizPac Review and Liberty Unyielding. He’s also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter, who can often be found honing his skills at the range. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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