HART: Starbucks: Serving hot cups of racial judgment

Staff Writer
The Destin Log

Tired of selling overpriced coffee to pretentious white Americans, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz was going to end racism.

He instructed his baristas, the tattooed and nose-ringed Women and Gender Studies Majors with $40,000 in student loan debt, to lecture us on race. Here is what I know for sure. If anyone wants to start a “conversation” about race with you, he is doing two things: calling you racist and presuming to virtuously lecture you on the matter.

Implicit in the tone and tenor of such conversations is that the lecturers are morally superior and not racists, so that automatically makes you morally inferior and a racist. But worry not — they are there to help you. Liberals take this tone about every nonsensical issue like global warming and helping the poor. Their stands are not quantifiable, so they can make themselves look like such caring and compassionate people while implying that you are not and would do well to be more like them.

If Shultz had not bowed to public pressure, we would have been handed insult to the injury of standing in line for a $6.50 cup of coffee that you then would have to go fix yourself, in a place that employs snooty and not-so-bright baristas. Once when asked his name by a Starbucks' employee so he might write it on the customer's cup, the guy said “Marc with a C.” The employee promptly wrote “Cark” on his cup.

It was a terrible idea to have Starbucks workers lecture customers on this. Harrison Ford had better view of the runway than these folks have on race.

If we are going to slow the line at Starbucks for a conversation on anything, it ought to be why they charge $6.50 for a cup of gritty coffee that you can get at McDonald's for $1.50. Talk is cheap; why not a latte? Let’s talk about how much the dolts who buy coffee each day at Starbucks, versus at McDonald’s or making it themselves, would save in a year by not being ripped off. $6.50 minus $1.50 is $5. So, 365 days times about $5 extra is $1,825 extra dollars a year, assuming you don’t tip the hipster "philosophers" at Starbuck who write your name on your cup.

Starbucks is not a lecture hall, it is a place to meet someone you don’t quite trust in your home, or are buying something from them on Craigslist. At best, it is a place to finish a term paper.

Liberals, and especially the Obama administration, see race in everything. You cannot sort laundry without them calling you a racist. Schultz admitted he took his cue from Eric Holder.

Of late, their national media is focused on scouring the nation to find pseudo-race-based incidents they can highlight on the news. They misreport, with obvious bias, and then extrapolate to brand each incident as indicative of all of America. Like Starbucks, the media seems to relish giving the condescending stink eye to America on race.

The most egregious recent incident was those dopey University of Oklahoma frat boys singing a song with the "N" word in it. If Jay Z had sung it, he would have gotten a Grammy and a BET Award for album of the year.

The lefts renewed focus on race is based largely on the Ferguson case, in a lame attempt to pit the races against each other. To review their best set of facts: Michael Brown was the African American, inner-city youth with a troubled past. Ferguson Police Officer Darren Wilson traces his family back to England, where white people were invented. Officer Wilson had just come from a service call to a black neighborhood, where he helped a sick 2-year-old baby and its mother. Michael Brown had just strong-arm robbed a store and assaulted its clerk. The two met by chance. Brown had drugs in his system; Officer Wilson had a great record as a policeman. Because of Democrats and the media fanning the racial fires since then, Wilson was tormented and lost his job, and several policemen have been shot, most recently two in Ferguson.

Racial relations are much worse since Obama. I had really felt he was in the best position to pull us together. He had done the opposite.

How healthy is this one-sided, faux "conversation on race" under false pretenses?About as healthy as paying $18 for a chocolate latte and a stale 900-calorie scone at Starbucks. Starbucks decided to leave the race baiting to the professionals: Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton. It’s their livelihood.

Ron Hart is a syndicated op-ed humorist, award-winning author and TV/radio commentator. Email or visit