This again. Want to experience some dehumanizing, passive-aggressive racial and/or religious discrimination while just trying to live your damn life? Look no further than your fast food receipt. Over the weekend, a Sikh man examined his Nathan's receipt to discover the cashier had referred to him as "Osama."
Stand Up Against Dehumanizing Behavior
On Sunday, Parampal Singh Ghai and his father were driving up I-95 to New York when they pulled over at a rest stop in Aberdeen, Maryland. They ordered food at Nathan's Famous, when Parampal, who wears a turban in observance of his Sikh faith, realized that the cashier had written his name as "Osama" on the receipt.
When Parampal confronted the cashier about the receipt, she apparently said nothing and just smirked, while other Nathan's employees, as well as a customer, looked on and laughed.
This past Sunday afternoon, on October 25, 2015, Connecticut resident Parampal Singh Ghai and his father were driving on I-95 north, headed back to his parents' home in Long Island after a family birthday celebration in Virginia. They decided to fuel up with snacks at the Maryland House Service Plaza in Aberdeen, Maryland, north of Baltimore.
Parampal ordered apple pie among other food items at Nathan's. While he waited for his food, he noticed a Nathan's employee calling customers by their name and handing them their order. Parampal, who had not been asked for his name when he ordered, looked down at his receipt. To his horror, he saw the cashier had written his name as "Osama" on the receipt.
He quickly moved to confront the cashier about why she was discriminating against him, calling him "Osama", and humiliating him. She said nothing and smirked. Meanwhile, another Nathan's employee and a customer laughed at Parampal, deepening his humiliation. Parampal, who had lost his appetite, returned his food.
What the hell. It's infuriating and unacceptable that somebody who just wants some fucking nuggets and apple pie, has to endure this kind of humiliation because a shitty Nathan's cashier saw his turban and beard and decided to have a laugh. Is this the kind of behavior that Nathan's Famous tolerates?
The Sikh Coalition is calling on Nathan's to take immediate action -- including educating their employees on respecting cultural and religious diversity and engaging in Sikh awareness training -- to ensure that this doesn't happen again. You are encouraged to reach out to Nathan's on Twitter and Facebook and tell them what's up.
UPDATE: Nathan's issued the following statement regarding the incident via Facebook:
"Thank you for bringing this unacceptable incident to our attention. Nathan’s Famous does not tolerate this type of behavior and we are taking steps to immediately address this with the franchisee that owns and operates the location. If anyone can put us in direct contact with Mr. Parampal Singh Ghai please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 1-800-NATHANS ext. 306."