Unfiltered Story #182205

, , | Unfiltered | January 7, 2020

(I am working the front desk of a local library when an African-American lady of approximately middle age comes up to return some overdue books and drops them rudely on the counter in front of me.)
Lady: “I want to return these books!”
(I do as she asks, and tell her how much she owes in fines, at which point, she goes ballistic.)
Lady: “Oh, HELL NO! THIS IS B******T! i AIN’T PAYING YOU ALL NOTHING! YOU KNOW YOU ALL JUST TRYING TO SCAM BLACK PEOPLE AND CHARGE THEM MORE! I BET YOU DON’T CHARGE WHITE PEOPLE THIS MUCH WHEN THEY’RE LATE WITH STUFF!”
Me: “Ma’am, at no place in the City Code or the library policy does it say that we charge minority patrons any more or less for overdue items. That would be discriminatory, and would be cause for any employee to be fired immediately. Here, (I show her the printed copy of the library’s policy in a book we have readied for such situations which pop up more than any of us would like to admit.) you can see what we charge for fines. Your items were (X number of) days overdue. Multiply that by twenty cents per item per day, and the math comes out right. You can see for yourself nowhere does it say we give white people a discounted rate or charge anyone else more. I can personally assure you I charge my mother and father the EXACT same rate when their items are overdue, and I have, too. Now, ma’am. Did you want to pay by cash, check, or debit or credit card?”
(She stormed out in a huff, but did come back to pay her fines several days later, apologizing to me personally for how she’d acted and confessed that she’d been having a bad day, and thanked me for being so patient with her.)