Privileged girl's offensive and misguided comments over McDonald's strike causes huge controversy
British McDonald's workers took to the streets in protest yesterday in the chain's first ever strike since it's opening in the UK in 1974.
Around 40 staff went on strike in both Cambridge and Crayford to protest the chain's unfairly low wages and zero hour contracts. Amongst the demands of the The Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union were a wage of £10 an hour, more secure working hours rather than zero hour contracts and union recognition.
Considering the living wage in London is set at £9.15 an hour, the demands across these stores are hardly far from reasonable. Working long and often unpredictable hours in substandard conditions for barely over the legal minimum wage is a problem that has faced fast food workers for far too long.
Speaking to The Guardian, one McDonald's worker and striker, Steve, 25, who is paid at £7.60 an hour, said:
“I get about 35 hours a week but even so I can only afford to live because I get all my meals at McDonalds."
Whilst many came out to support the strike, there too came the unwanted, unasked for and downright offensive opinions of the white privileged faces of gentrified London. Amongst those issuing these self-important perspectives was 'artist' (*cough* most likely trust-fund recipient) Hetty Douglas. Yes, 'Hetty.'
Uploading a snapchat that I can only assume was some attempt at humour, she issued a classist and snobby insult at two men in front of her at McDonald's:
Imagine the nonsensical privileged world in which you must live to accuse others of being so uneducated and beneath you whilst in a queue for one of the world's cheapest fast-food restaurants. Mind blowing. It's all well and good embracing the 'edgy' side of Peckham, but POOR PEOPLE?! Heaven forbid. Twitter were very, very quick to pick up on the irony.
One Twitter user took screenshots of her now deleted Instagram account, in which she posed for a photo with her job centre booklet to her 15k followers:
posing with her job centre booklet for her 15k instagram followers then mocking people in work gear lol this girls privilege is insane— holly (@hollyemwhitaker) September 4, 2017
Twitter has since come out in force to absolutely tear Hetty to shreds:
and you look like a spoiled rich girl gentrifying south London pic.twitter.com/0bysFYfc9c— rhi (@rhiharper) September 4, 2017
Hi Hetty nice isn't it xx pic.twitter.com/UauKm8JQmr— H❤️ (@AveejHannah) September 4, 2017
this hetty douglas shit actually makes me beyond sad cos most rich kids are beyond insidious about us but love our culture to the max— jessa (@housemaiden_) September 4, 2017
It didn't take long for people to start trolling her Instagram. Looks like you can have all the GCSEs in the world, but it doesn't make you good at art:
We can all graffiti Tumblr quotes on a plain canvas, though, seriously:
The inundation of abuse has since led her to delete her account, with no sign of a public statement or apology.
And it wasn't just Hetty who received a tonne of abuse for misguided comments about the strike. 'Youtuber' Suzy LuGME said the following:
McDonald's workers on strike cause they want £10 an hour? Go and get an actual decent job & stop expecting handouts... #McStrike— Suzy 🐶 (@SuzyLuGME) September 4, 2017
Go and get an actual decent job... coming from the girl... who sits at a computer... making videos?
Do you have any idea what level of privilege you have to spend your time making youtube videos?— Damien Walter (@damiengwalter) September 4, 2017
McDonalds makes billions annually. These people are generating more money than they're paid. What's wrong with asking for more of it?— Nathan Ditum (@NathanDitum) September 4, 2017
A good rule of thumb "never look down upon someone who supplys something you use" I bet she's been to McDonald's many a time.— Aimée Talbot (@Bunnyaimee) September 4, 2017
Suzy followed her tweet with the argument that most people see McDonald's as a 'stepping stone' rather than a career. Yes, because McDonald's has no assistant managers, managers, regional managers, DOES SHE HAVE ANY IDEA HOW BUSINESSES WORK? OBVIOUSLY NOT, SHE'S A YOUTUBER.
"YouTube entertainer" tells fast food workers to get an "actual decent job"...😑 pic.twitter.com/iel1tekjhU— sam shelley (@hermesgypsy) September 4, 2017
Moral of the story: don't be an arsehole. Be nice, understanding and empathetic to the struggles of others. Solidarity with those worse off than yourself costs nothing.