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We the people (and our Twitter feeds)

If you missed it, the comedian Leslie Jones recently took to Twitter to state: “Wow was such a great night at the BET awards. But then had THE WORST STAY @RitzCarlton DO NOT STAY THERE!! THEY DONT LIKE BLACK PEOPLE!!”  With nearly 700,000 followers, Ms. Jones’s accusation regarding the Los Angeles property received a lot of attention, with thousands of total retweets, likes and comments. There has been no elaboration on what prompted Ms. Jones’ allegation, nor any evidence of wrongdoing revealed. In response, the hotel tweeted back apologizing and pledging that they “provide excellent service to all” and will “look into this right away.”

All people are created equally, and undoubtedly there should be no tolerance for racism of any kind in America. With this said, Ms. Jones should be transparent and articulate exactly what occurred to justify such a harsh indictment against the Ritz-Carlton. I believe it to be fair to assume that hotel management will properly deal with any employee(s) that made Ms. Jones feel unwelcome due to the color of her skin, if that was in fact the case.

Ms. Jones has not followed up on her tweet explaining what exactly happened, and it is unfortunate that her negative claim has been broadly brushed on a well-known and respected brand, namely Ritz-Carlton. It is also regrettable that our great nation is experiencing pronounced racial and political divisiveness, as many Americans are riled up about a wide array of issues. There are strong, and often valid, feelings that people of all ages, identities, ethnicities, backgrounds and either side of the political aisle have experienced.

As we approach July 4, when Americans celebrate the history, government and traditions of the United States, it may be appropriate that we all reconsider the notion of compromise. We should look toward a change in attitude in our society that gets us out of gridlock and into a productive dialogue. Every member of our great nation is entitled to their opinions, but not every opinion is right, and not every opinion is accurate and well-thought-out. Problems occur when one’s opinions and potentially biases get in the way of the facts and prevent any sort of movement toward progress. Perhaps Independence Day 2017 is a fitting juncture for us all to look in the mirror and do some reevaluating.

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