A Louisville mall is banning a woman caught on video screaming racist and vulgar insults at another holiday shopper.
The video of the unidentified woman shouting “go back to wherever the (expletive) you come from, lady” in a check-out line at the Jefferson Mall spread quickly on social media Tuesday. By Wednesday, it had been viewed more than five million times.
The mall issued a statement on its Facebook page saying that it is working to identify the woman and bar her from returning.
In the video taken by another shopper, the elderly white woman claims a Hispanic woman cut in line to join another shopper.
The white woman screams at the two women that they’re “nobodies,” ”probably on welfare” and tells them to learn to speak English.
Mayor Greg Fischer issued a statement Wednesday saying he was “sad and disappointed to see conduct like this, when one person so dehumanizes another human being.”
“This is not who we are, and on behalf of our community, I apologize to the two women who were treated in such a horrible way. I hope this video prompts many discussions among families as they gather for the holidays this week – discussions about basic human values, dignity and respect. As a country of immigrants, we must understand that we only move forward through peace, acceptance and embracing those who are different from us. These are basic American values protected in our Constitution, values embraced in this welcoming, compassionate community.”
Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell in a statement denounced the actions of the woman, calling them “intolerant” and said he felt “the incident could rise to the level criminal conduct.”
“My office would review for possible prosecution any evidence from the individuals to whom these comments were directed, just as we would with any criminal complaint,” O’Connell said.
On his Facebook page, Fischer shared advice from Bryan Warren, director of the Metro Office for Globalization, regarding the mall incident. Warren said the best way to handle situations such as the one at Jefferson Mall is to befriend the targeted person or persons and ignore the verbal attacker.