McDonald’s became the latest mega corporation to require all patrons to wear a mask within their dining areas as of August 1st. The move follows the trend of large retailers and restaurants taking it upon themselves to enforce local mask ordinances, although their hearts haven’t really been in it. McDonald’s also stated they would make reasonable accommodations to serve anyone unwilling or unable to wear a mask.
Even that shred of goodwill, however, was thrown out the window by McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski. During an interview on CBS This Morning Kempczinski stated there was a very good possibility that McDonald’s employees would call the cops on any patron refusing to abide by their new rule:
“We’re spending a lot of time right now in our restaurants making sure we can keep our crews safe, making sure we can keep our customers safe,” he told CBS This Morning.
“We’ve for quite some time required our crew to wear masks, but we thought that in light of what we’re seeing, it’s prudent now that we also ask our customers to wear masks in the restaurant as well,” he continued.
“If someone is unwilling to wear a mask and comply with our rules, that might be where we might bring in law enforcement,” he added.
Lord knows there have been plenty of incidents in which employees at major retail chains and restaurants have been assaulted or even killed by patrons unwilling to wear masks. Businesses should absolutely call the police any time someone refusing to follow the rules of that establishment becomes violent.
Kempczinski, however, certainly implies that McDonald’s employees will simply call the police whenever someone refuses to wear a mask in one of their restaurants. No doubt there are some McDonald’s employees that would take Kempczinski’s statement made during a television interview as a corporate edict. How many unthinking McDonald’s drones will see this as the chance to unleash their inner Karen and simply call the cops on everyone refusing to wear a mask?
Kempczinksi’s assertion that McDonald’s workers might just call the cops on any anti-maskers also seems to be rather hypocritical. McDonald’s was one of many giant corporations who issued a statement supporting Black Lives Matter after the death of George Floyd (but before the riots). McDonald’s even released a spiffy Twitter video that likely took all of 5 minutes for someone’s kid to make.
They were one of us:
Trayvon Martin. Michael Brown. Alton Sterling. Botham Jean. Atatiana Jefferson. Ahmaud Arbery. George Floyd. pic.twitter.com/s1UhP5vncv
— McDonald’s (@McDonalds) June 3, 2020
McDonald’s donated over $1 million to various racial justice groups, including the National Urban League and the NAACP in the wake of George Floyd’s death. McDonald’s USA President Joe Erlinger issued an open letter to McDonald’s employees and franchisees on the company blog in which he expressed the need to listen to the concerns of people of color:
I will not speak to – nor will I claim to fully understand – how events like these affect African Americans and people of color. However, I see and recognize the impact these events have at an individual and collective level. And, when any member of our McFamily hurts, we all hurt.
That’s why we need to take a moment to acknowledge what so many across the McDonald’s System and in our communities are feeling right now, and to listen. At the same time, our actions matter, and so we must recommit to our shared values of diversity and inclusion. At McDonald’s, our doors are open to everyone, and we exclude nobody.
How does Kempczinksi’s newfound willingness to use law enforcement officers to enforce his company’s new mask policy jive with McDonald’s newfound wokeness? After all, George Floyd was killed by evil, racist police officers who were looking for a black man to murder. Why on earth would anyone want to call in one of those evil thugs on a person of color who refused to wear a mask? Wouldn’t that open McDonald’s up to huge liability concerns when said police officer became enraged and tasered said person of color to death?
Seems more than a little hypocritical to me.
Either way, corporations should not be on the forefront of enforcing mask edicts upon customers. Given that apparently 90% of Americans are wearing masks anyway, however, I’m not expecting a huge backlash against McDonald’s.
Exit question: doesn’t everyone who goes to McDonald’s use the drive thru anyway? I can’t remember the last time I actually ate inside one of their restaurants.