A 27-year-old man was arrested this week in Aurora, Colorado (not Florida!!!) on suspicion of shooting a Waffle House cook a day after a dispute over the customer refusing to wear a mask.
The customer was reportedly a regular at this particular Waffle House and came in for food when the staff informed him he would need to be wearing a face mask in order to receive service. He then left and returned with a mask but refused to wear it and allegedly got into an altercation with the cook, slapping him and ‘cutting his lip’, before pulling out a semi-automatic pistol and shooting the cook.
The entire story seems just unbelievably surreal when you take just the tiniest step back and realize this person is being accused of SHOOTING SOMEONE because they wouldn’t wear a mask during a global health crisis, a mask designed to stop a deadly virus from spreading to vulnerable populations.
Here’s the rundown from KDVR.com:
A waitress told Watson he needed to have a mask on or he could not be served, the court document says. The restaurant was offering carry-out orders.
Watson allegedly returned with a mask that he was not wearing, and was again told he could not be served. Police were told Watson pulled out a small gun and placed it on the counter, then told the cook he could “blow your brains out.”
The following night, May 15, just after midnight, police say Watson returned to the restaurant. The same cook from the previous night told Watson he was not going to be served, according to the court document. Watson then allegedly slapped the cook across the face.
The cook told police he began running toward the back of the Waffle House. Watson shot the cook in his chest or abdomen outside the restaurant, according to the court document. The cook told police he ran toward his home while calling 911.
Police say the cook was taken to a hospital. (via KDVR)
Is this already the state of things in America? Seriously? I cannot believe we’ve already progressed to the ‘shooting people for trying to keep others safe’ stage of things in just two months.
The Director of Public Relations for Waffle House released this statement:
“We are relieved to hear that Aurora police have made an arrest for this terrible crime, and greatly appreciate the diligence of local law enforcement. This case involves a senseless act of violence that should not be tolerated in any community. We are very thankful that neither of our associates who were working when the incident occurred, suffered any life-threatening injuries. Our thoughts and well wishes remain with our associate who was injured and now is recovering at home.”
I’m inclined to tell myself that this is just a one-off altercation, something that could’ve/would’ve happened under other circumstances. If we start seeing more crimes like this across America and a pattern develops then we need to have a serious talk about personal safety and just why exactly people believe they are above wearing masks when it is a private business’ policy to mandate masks. You can take your business elsewhere. In fact, you 100% should go elsewhere.
Nobody’s forcing you to bring your business somewhere that’s requiring people to wear masks. That’s your choice. You have options. We also all have the option to wear masks in public and at restaurants to put in the ABSOLUTE MINIMUM AMOUNT OF EFFORT to slow the spread of this virus. Is that really too much to ask? Doing the bare minimum in order to save lives even one life?