Dyamn! Black women can’t eat at a restaurant in peace up in HARLEM?! What is America coming to?
I mean we knew it was tough to just chill and have a nice meal as a person of color away from home here in America. But Harlem?!
“Two African-American women are suing a popular Harlem eatery, alleging they felt “violated” after an employee racially profiled and falsely accused them of dining and dashing.
Tara Fitzgibbon visited the Angel of Harlem restaurant on Frederick Douglass Blvd. near W. 122nd St. for the first time on Feb. 10 with her friend Tamara Young. As they ordered drinks, a manager came up behind them and gruffly accused them of racking up a tab during a previous visit.
Fitzgibbon, of New Rochelle, Westchester County, and Young, of Harlem, charge in a complaint filed with the city’s human rights commission earlier this month that they felt “dehumanized” by the experience, as the manager snatched menus from their hands, violently banged his hands on the bar and accused them of “lying and stealing.”
“It was a public embarrassment and humiliating to us and to everyone else who was in the restaurant,” Fitzgibbon told the Daily News over the phone Tuesday. “There was a lot of people there.”
The two women tried to ease the situation, telling the fuming manager that they had never been to the restaurant before.
But the unidentified manager was unrelenting and told Fitzgibbon that he had surveillance footage of her dining and dashing at the eatery the week before. “Look at your tape because I was not in Angel last week,” Fitzgibbon said, according to the complaint.
To her shock, the manager then showed Fitzgibbon surveillance footage of a woman who she says looked nothing like her — except that she was also black.
“What, do all black people look alike to you?” Young exclaimed in response, according to Fitzgibbon.
The manager became “violently defensive” after Young’s comment and pushed her as she and Fitzgibbon left the restaurant, the complaint states.
Richard St. Paul, a Westchester attorney representing Fitzgibbon and Young, said the women will seek damages in the “hundreds of thousands” for the emotional distress and embarrassment that the manager inflicted.
Fitzgibbon also says she hopes that their complaint will force restaurant management to retrain the staff.
“This shouldn’t have to happen to anyone else,” she said.
Anahi Angelone, the owner of Angel of Harlem, did not return several requests for comment on Tuesday.
When The News first reported on the allegations in February, Angelone insisted that “there are two sides to every story” but declined to specifically address the women’s allegations.
“It’s very sad that it went down the way it went down,” Angelone said at the time.
Ladies, next time take it down to Amy Ruth’s, and I promise you that there will be no such problems.
Besides, the food will be a lot better and less expensive.
*Pic from the New York Daily News.