We’ve seen stand-up comedians incorporate the Chinese accent into their bits to drum up a few laughs. Most of the time it’s innocent and in good humor. But there’re always some morons that take it too far. Here’s an example.
Just last month, a Chinese American mom, Peiyin Shih, visited a Dunkin’ Donuts store in Forrest Hills, New York with her one-year-old son and his nanny. When she attempted to order a chocolate donut, an employee mocked her Chinese accent by asking her multiple times to say the complete name of the donut she requested, even after she pointed out the one she wanted several times.
Shih described her experience in a Facebook post on Dunkin’ Donuts page on May 30:
“Hi, I went to this Dunkin Donuts located at 100-05 Queens Blvd, Forest Hills, NY 11375 with my nanny & my one year old son today 5/30/2016 at 3:38pm. Besides juice & hot chocolate, we order Glazed chocolate donut. Staff Yaibur R. told me that I have to say the whole name of the donut. I point it to him & tell him that I want the “glazed chocolate donut” with a accent. He is like “What? What are you saying?” I point it again & say “that chocolate donut.” He does not even want to look & help me. He just look at me & say “you have to say the whole name of the donut.” I say why should I say the whole name. You already know what I want. You just want to make fun of me. He said you just have to say it in order to order it. I said I want to talk to your manager. He said you don’t have to see the manager. Manager is not here. You think he will be here all the time. He has home. Today is holiday. He has to go home. I say what is your name? He point his name tag & say “Here is my name. Do you know how to say it?” I insist to see the manager. Of course that staff ignore me. And then, this customer start to scream at me. When I start to use my phone to record, that Dunkin staff finally stop making fun of me. But this customer start to approach me & scream at me saying that he is going to take my phone away & throw it outside of window. I say don’t touch me. I am calling the police. The customer even say that I must be illegal. How humiliated. The staff is just standing there laughing. Doing nothing. I called the police. This guy keep making fun of me before he run away. He even call the police & tell them that i am just a Chinese lady who doesn’t like the Dunkin personnal’s attitude. Language violence? Discrimination? Bully the women with a children? Is this represent Dunkin Donus? This behavior of discrimination & arrogant is unacceptable.”
Shih’s post quickly went viral, receiving 31,000 likes and over 16,000 shares. Dunkin’ Donuts responded within 30 minutes of her post where she also included a photo of the customer who threatened to throw her phone out the window:
It didn’t take long for the story to reach Chinese social media and eventually receive coverage by mainland and Hong Kong news outlets. Dunkin’ Donuts Facebook page has since been inundated with angry comments from Facebook users along with article links from different sources covering the story. AsAm News posted their cover of the story and received this in response:
According to Dunkin’ Donuts, they’ve reached out to Shih “to resolve the matter,” informed the franchisee about the incident, and dismissed the employee involved. But these steps have only led to more backlash as many commenters expressed outrage that the company has only directed blame away from itself and have yet to issue an official public apology.
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