Instead of a tip, a couple who dined at Carrabba’s Italian Grill in Overland Park this week left a message for their waiter that has social media buzzing.
Said the message: "Thank you for your service, it was excellent. That being said, we cannot in good conscience tip you, for your homosexual lifestyle is an affront to God. May God have mercy on you."
Friends of the 20-year-old waiter, appalled on his behalf, spread word of the incident on social media.
When Marvin Baker, a retired pastor in Overland Park, got wind of it, he and his partner went to lunch there on Thursday to show their support for the waiter.
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Baker told the restaurant’s hostess: “I believe you have a celebrity here.”
“It’s my son,” she said.
Baker asked to be seated in her son’s section so he could meet him and offer words of encouragement.
“I wonder how in the world they decided he was gay,” says Baker who runs the Gay Christian Fellowship ministry on Thursday nights at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church in Overland Park.
“The irony is, the people said his service was excellent.”
The waiter has not been identified and apparently prefers to keep it that way. Officials at the restaurant are referring all media inquiries to their corporate offices in Tampa, Fla.
“We do not tolerate discrimination — from either our employees or our guests. We embrace diversity and believe in treating everyone with respect,” the corporate statement read.
The incident calls to mind another at an Applebee’s restaurant in St. Louis, where a female minister left this note for her server on her bill: “I give God 10 per cent. Why do you get 18?”
Baker said if he could speak to the couple who left the message he would tell them this: “Ask the young man’s forgiveness.”