The Richardson, Texas location of the First Watch restaurant chain is under fire for ejecting a man wearing a “Fuck Trump” shirt.
Above screenshots of Ternay’s post taken by Constantine Spyrou//Foodbeast.
Andy Ternay shared on Facebook his account of what happened at the restaurant alongside a photo of his anti-Trump apparel. (Author’s note: Ternay’s post has since been removed and his account appears to have been privatized, but you can view the full account in the above screenshots).
Ternay says that he was approached by a manager that let him know that some customers were “distressed” about the shirt. Ternay expressed “deep sympathies and let her know that explaining “grab ‘em by the pussy” and golden showers to my daughter was equally unpleasant.”
After this, he was complimented by both guests and servers about the shirt, but the manager again expressed concerns about him wearing it. Eventually, after Ternay and his table ordered, a cook came out and told them apologetically that the owners had been called and they had to leave. Ternay tipped the server, got his drinks to go, and walked out, to the applause of at least one table of white people.
Turns out that things were just getting started at that point. One African-American server quit on the spot due to Ternay’s treatment. Additionally, the Richardson police had been called about the anti-Trump shirt and rolled up as Ternay was leaving. After refusing to give his name and stating his rights to wear the shirt, the policewoman eventually just told him to leave.
Ternay’s now-viral Facebook post has been shared over 150,000 times, and many are stepping up to support him through 1-star Google and Yelp reviews of the First Watch Richardson location. The following are several screenshots of those “protest reviews,” as both sites commonly remove the non-food criticisms during media controversies.
First Watch also dispatched a spokesperson to defend their Richardson location on Yelp for kicking Ternay out in the first place.
As for Ternay, he had this to say for those against the public display of his anti-Trump views:
“Everywhere I go with this shirt, white males sneer and people of color smile and give me thumbs up. I think it is very worthwhile to let people of color know they are not alone – that some whites also see the evil of racism is resurgent – and we will fight with our brothers and sisters of color against it.”
Ternay was fine with being asked to leave the restaurant, and isn’t urging for a boycott, especially since the workers were “polite and professional” to him the whole time. In fact, he hopes to be back at First Watch Richardson soon.