As you know, Worcester’s most notorious hippie criminal RBG just got back from a paid vacation to Oakland for his poetry slam hobby. And since he runs the Communities United Collective Facebook page, the posts there have slowed down recently. But now that he’s back from his vacation and continue his daily tradition of sitting on the computer all day and reposting one sided, anti-police, race-baiting, divisive stories, the page has picked up again on CUC’s FB page. Here’s one about “white privilege” that he was fired up about today:
Here’s the account from the San Francisco Gate about what happened on that train:
What started as a joyous ride through wine county Saturday afternoon turned into a “humiliating” experience for 11 African American women, who said they were booted off the Napa Valley Wine Train for laughing and talking too loud.
Accounts and pictures of the episode have been spreading across social media, spawning the hashtag #LaughingWhileBlack while the women involved have questioned whether they would have been treated differently if they were not African American.
“It was humiliating. I’m really offended to be quite honest,” said 47-year-old Lisa Johnson, who was among Saturday’s group. “I felt like it was a racist attack on us. I feel like we were being singled out.”
The women have since been given a full refund by the train company, but continue to seek a public apology.
In a statement Sunday, Napa Valley Wine Train spokeswoman Kira Devitt said the company “received complaints from several parties in the same car and after three attempts from staff, requesting that the group keep the noise to an acceptable level, they were removed from the train and offered transportation back to the station in Napa.”
The incident began when Johnson and her book club, the Sisters on the Reading Edge, embarked around 11 a.m. for their annual trip through wine country — an adventure they had been planning since November.
Johnson, a self-described social media fanatic, posted pictures on Facebook, documenting the entire episode as it unfolded.
The women — all wearing matching T-shirts — were all seated in the same car in adjacent tables and seats, laughing and having a good time. They and the other passengers on the sold-out train were ordering tastings and glasses of wine as they rode the 18-mile stretch from Napa to St. Helena through California’s most famous and picturesque vineyards and wineries.
And while the group — which included an 83-year-old grandmother — may at times have been “rambunctious,” they were not “obnoxious or intoxicated,” Johnson said.
Several passengers, she said, even came up to them to take pictures, and asked about the romance novel they were reading for their club. But a short while into their trip, Johnson said a manager on the train asked them to pipe it down.
“The train is set up to be with your friends, to drink wine and have a good time,” Johnson said. “We were thinking, ‘Who are we offending?’”
Later on, Johnson said the manager told them that “this isn’t going to work,” and that if they didn’t “tone it down,” they were going to be asked to get off the train.
“It was a bizarre thing for all of us,” she said, adding that many in the group quieted down and wondered what had happened.
According to Johnson, one of the women in the same car told the group “this isn’t a bar.” “And we though, um, yes it is,” Johnson said.
What came next, she said, was the worst part of the afternoon. When the train pulled into the St. Helena station, the group had to do the “walk of shame” as they were escorted past passengers on the six other cars, Johnson said. At the station, the group was met by officers from the Napa Valley Railroad and St. Helena police departments.
“People were looking at us,” Johnson said. “To get escorted into the hands of waiting police officers. That’s the humiliating part.”
But Chief Jeff Hullquist of the Napa Valley Railroad Police Department said there “was no police action taken” at the station.
“When someone is removed from a train, they have to be dropped off at a station, and our policy is if someone is let off the train we’ll stand by,” he said. “We keep them safe until someone can get them.”
“The Napa Valley Wine Train does not enjoy removing guests from our trains, but takes these things very seriously in order to ensure the enjoyment and safety of all of our guests,” Devitt said, adding that about once a month guests need to be removed from the train.
Johnson said despite their treatment on the ride, the company has worked with them. They were given a refund, provided with free pictures, and a van was sent to pick them up.
“The people in the station were absolutely wonderful,” she said, ready to let the incident go.
But that’s when someone from the company posted an account of the incident on Facebook. Johnson was miffed.
“Following verbal and physical abuse toward other guests and staff, it was necessary to get our police involved,” the since-deleted post reads in part, which Johnson captured in a screen grab and re-posted to Facebook. “Many groups come on board and celebrate. When those celebrations impact our other guests, we do intervene.”
The post was quickly taken down and the company reached out to the women to make amends, she said. Devitt said the company is “conducting an internal audit to make sure all of our policies were followed and options were offered.”
“They knew they were out of place,” Johnson said, but added that she “wants a public apology for the humiliations they caused to us as professional women.”
Turtleboy’s take on this is simple. First of all, the people who are running this train need to calm down. Like the women said, it’s a fucking wine train. People are gonna get wasted on it and they’re gonna get a little loud. So long as they’re not puking in the aisles and taking dumps in the corner, I say no harm no foul. It’s borderline cruel and unusual punishment to serve people booze, get them all liquored up and then tell them to keep the volume to a minimum.
Look, I don’t care what color you are, but when you put 11 women from a book club on a train together and toss some day drinking into the mix, shit’s gonna get real theatrical.
Here’s my question – did the managers on the train take action because people complained or were they doing it because they take their jobs too seriously? In all fairness, Turtleboy was not there that day so we can’t really comment as to what exactly went down. According to the train’s Facebook page it was because of a customer though:
I don’t understand how anyone can’t side with the Sisters on the Reading Edge on this one. If I had to pick who I would rather spend a long train ride in California with – this cranky old hag or the Sisters on the Reading Edge, I’m taking the sisters ten times out of ten. These ladies don’t just read, they read on the edge. Which apparently means getting happy drunk on wine. I mean, tell me you wouldn’t wanna spend an afternoon getting sloppy with these gals:
Where do I sign up? Because that is EXACTLY the type of crowd Turtleboy caters to. Middle aged women getting happy drunk on wine. That fits the profile of at least 40% of people reading this right now. Fun times. People like this have been telling Turtleboy to stop having fun his whole life:
Meanwhile people like this happy wine drunk old lady are a million times easier to please:
Do you realize how many hilarious anecdotes that woman has ready to go? Probably millions. Toss some merlot in her and watch what happens.
Look, I understand the manager thinks he or she was just doing their job, but even Turtleboy knows that you don’t fuck with 11 drunk, powerful, dignified, African-American women on a train. You’re just asking for it if you do that. Trust me, I’ve seen Diary of an Angry Black Woman more times than any white guy in history.
They lost me with the race stuff though. Obviously Turtleboy doesn’t like the racial aspect of this because generally we think it’s wrong to ASSUME that anyone’s intentions are racially motivated. Because calling someone racist is a very serious accusation. And if you don’t have proof that the people you’re talking about are REALLY racist, then it’s not fair to go tossing the race card around.
At the same time I’ve seen tons of shit posted about this that is actual, legitimate racism. For instance, if you’re thinking about writing “that’s because black women are louder in general,” as TONS of people already have on Facebook, then I’d reconsider before hitting enter. Because generally when you assign a certain type of behavior to an entire racial group, you’re pretty much setting the standard for racism.
These women should be catering to the party animals, not the RBG’s of the world. This wasn’t an example of “white privilege” this was an example of discrimination against fun people. Because I guarantee that if the Turtleboy Buffalo brigade were on this train we would’ve been kicked off two stops before them. And the only black guy we’ve got is J-Dubz and a couple Puerto Rican transplants from Webster.
But instead they’re making this all about being black, when it should be all about being drunk. Now this story is being controlled by media outlets that profit off of manufactured racism. The correct hashtag shouldn’t be #LaughingWhileBlack, it should be #LaughingWhileDrunk. This is an example of sober privilege, not white privilege. Then again, no one would probably pay attention to the story if race wasn’t made the central part of the story.
This is why I’m so pissed at the train manager. Because he just gave RBG and the rest of these knuckleheads more fuel for the fire.
The last thing I’ll say is this. The train is a privately run business. They have the right to kick anyone off if they feel that it’s affecting other customers. As a matter of fact, they don’t even really need a reason why. It’s their business and they can conduct it as they see fit. But at the same time, in the free market the Sisters on the Reading Edge have the right to raise bloody hell and fuck up their Yelp reviews. Don’t wanna lose business and have your reputation smeared? Don’t cater to uptight butthurt poopsmoochers and kick off 11 members of the Sisters on the Reading Edge. Boom. Problem solved.