Sesame Place may soon owe $25 million for racism

Have you ever been rejected? If so, my condolences regarding your pain of over $20 million. According to a lawsuit, this could be the amount of harm done to you and others similarly snubbed.

Earlier this month, at Sesame Place amusement park in Pennsylvania, two young cousins ​​tried to clap the hands of a costumed character. The parading life-size puppet nodded “no” and walked away.

A video that has gone viral:

The episode caused a stir, even on this very site. Bonchie de – announced: “I regret to inform you that strange green mascots named Rosita from Sesame Street are now the face of racism in America. Our colleague Jeff Charles charged: “Sesame Street is a white supremacist production and should be shut down immediately.”

Bonchie gave the context of the calamitous clip:

A statement from Sesame Street claims the mascot has not seen the two black children. …According to people there, Rosita was not waving to the first white wife or the two black children. Instead, they repeatedly waved at someone behind the crowd trying to get the mascot to hold a baby. That would make sense given the security concerns.

Nevertheless, racism was alleged.

Sesame Workshop has crafted a curious response. Following the initial insistence of a misunderstanding, he waved the white flag of repentant words:

We sincerely apologize to the family for their experience at our park on Saturday; we know that is wrong. We are taking steps to do better. We are committed to fixing this problem.

The company has pledged to have its employees undergo “bias training”.

On June 19, Jeff Charles observed that the girls’ family had retained an attorney. Jeff joked that Sesame Place “should have to donate at least $2 million to Black Lives Matter every year for a decade.”

It looks like a new family is trying to top their $20 million prescription — by five million.

From the Associated Press:

A Baltimore family is suing a Sesame Street-themed amusement park for $25 million for racial discrimination, alleging that several costumed characters ignored a 5-year-old black girl at a dating event last month.

The lawsuit follows a video, widely shared on social media, showing two other black girls apparently snubbed…

The lawsuit — filed in federal court against Sesame Place owner SeaWorld Parks — calls for “pervasive and appalling racial discrimination.”

The lawsuit alleges four employees dressed as Sesame Street characters ignored Quinton Burns, his daughter Kennedi Burns and other black guests at the June 18 get-together. The lawsuit states that “SeaWorld performers readily engaged with many similarly situated white customers.”

At a press conference on Wednesday, one of the family’s attorneys, Malcolm Ruff, called for SeaWorld’s transparency and for the company to compensate the Burns family. The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

The suit is of the class-action type; several families have made similar claims.

As for Jodi Brown, the mother of one of the girls in the original video, she rejected Sesame Place’s public apology.

And on Wednesday, the — noted Congressional involvement:

Members of the Congressional Black Caucus have reportedly demanded a meeting with leaders at a Sesame Street theme park after a video showing a costumed figure waving at two six-year-old black girls during a parade went viral.

Jodi demanded that the pernicious employee in Rosita’s costume be fired.

It’s an amazing amount of backfire from a nod and a flick of the index finger. But these are the days of vital visibility, where microaggressions amount to “death by a thousand cuts”. Sesame Place better build their costumes with more eye holes – so everyone can feel seen enough.

In the meantime, maybe $25 million will serve as balm for those who have been hurt.

-ALEX

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Find all my works – here.

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