Posted : 2012-02-15 19:10
Updated : 2012-02-15 19:10

Starbucks under attack for ’racist drawing’

Drawings of slanted eyes are seen on cups offered to two South Korean customers at a Starbucks location in Georgia.

By Jane Han

NEW YORK — It’s everyday practice for Starbucks baristas in the United States to write customers’ names on their cups. But one employee decided to try something different by drawing — a caricature with slanted eyes to identify two Korean customers.

And it didn’t take long for the news to go viral, prompting a bitter reaction from the public who called the drawing racist.

“What the barista did was very offensive and I hope you do realize that this is a very serious matter,” wrote Evangeline Hwang on Starbucks Coffee’s official Facebook page.

Last month, two English speaking Koreans at a Starbucks location in Georgia discovered that their barista served them more than coffee. They each got a drawing of slanted eyes on their cups, where customer names are usually written.

The two immediately complained to the store manager, who reportedly didn’t bother defending the drawings. Instead, They were simply given a gift card.

Days after the news spread online, Starbucks indicated that the employee involved in the incident was asked to leave.

The incident continues to rankle Koreans, especially after a recent racial controversy at a Papa John’s restaurant in New York.

The U.S. pizza chain came under attack last month when an employee typed out “lady chinky eyes” on a receipt, instead of the customer’s name. The angry woman took the issue to Twitter and more than 100,000 people viewed her post while hundreds retweeted it.

“Another racist slur? What’s happening here? This is becoming annoying,” says Regina Kim, 27, of New York.

“A lot of similar incidents are probably happening more often. It’s just that we don’t know about it. I’m going to keep a closer eye on my receipt and coffee cups now.”

A community of Korean-American housewives went further to suggest a boycott.

“All Asians should team up and refrain from going to Starbucks,” wrote one user on, a popular site for women. “We need to take action and stop getting pushed around.”

Aside from boycotting the coffee joint, the Korean community in Georgia is considering taking legal action.

“Racial discrimination, bullying and bigotry is unjust regardless of which race or ethnic group it is directed to,” stated the Asian American Legal Advocacy Center of Georgia.

“Assuming Asian-Americans won’t say anything or that these incidents don’t happen to the ‘model minority’ is simply wrong.”
관련 한글 기사

스타벅스, 한국인 비하 행위.. 네티즌 발칵

미국 스타벅스에서 일하는 종업원(바리스타)들이 음료 잔에 해당음료를 주문한 고객의 이름을 쓰는 것은 자연스러운 관행이다.

그러나 최근 한 종업원이 이름을 쓰는 대신, 두 한국인 고객의 음료 잔에 ‘찢어진 눈’을 그려 비난을 받고 있다.

이 같은 사실이 빠르게 퍼져나감에 따라, 인종차별적 그림을 그린 해당 종업원에 대한 사과를 촉구하는 움직임이 커지고 있다.

사건의 당사자인 에반젤린 황씨는 스타벅스의 공식 페이스북에 올린 글을 통해 ‘그 종업원이 한 행동은 매우 모욕적인 것이었으며, 이것이 심각한 일이라는 것을 알아야 한다 ’고 자신의 입장을 밝혔다.

지난달, 황씨를 비롯한 두 명의 한국 여성은 조지아 주에 있는 한 스타벅스 매장에 방문했다. 주문한 음료를 받아 든 이들은 그러나, 이내 이름이 쓰여있어야 할 곳에 자신들의 이름 대신 찢어진 눈 그림이 그려져 있는 것을 발견했다.

둘은 즉시 매장 매니저에게 항의 했으나, 해당 매니저가 그림에 대해 달리 사과하는 기색 없이 스타벅스에서 사용할 수 있는 기프트 카드를 건네는 것으로 사태를 수습하려 했다고 알려졌다.

이 같은 소식이 온라인 상에서 확산되자, 스타벅스 측은 해당 종업원의 해고를 지시했다.
최근 뉴욕의 파파존스 식당에서 이와 비슷한 인종차별 논란이 있었던 터라 한국인들의 분노는 쉽게 사그라들 것 같지 않다.

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