During an 8-hour long shift, waiters and waitresses get to interact with so many people, and it’s exhausting! But what this waitress didn’t expect was to watch those three men enter the restaurant and get a table.
The awkward thing was that they were wearing red “Make America Great Again” hats. In addition, the restaurant was known for promoting political activism. As the three men entered the restaurant, the people around them went silent. All eyes were on them, so what did the waitress do?
When it comes to politics, even the most calm people can get into heated disputes.
Opinions are different, so imagine how things were going right after President Donald Trump’s inauguration started…
It was obvious that the weekend after Donald Trump became the new President of the United States, people would get all riled up.
Some were excited, others on the contrary, and of course, there were some mixed feelings about the new leadership.
People were celebrating the inauguration of the 45th President of the United States of America.
So were the three men that wore their MAGA hats the next day as they entered the restaurant. Nobody knew that day would forever change the way we perceive people.
Jason White was in Washington, D.C. and celebrating the event with two friends. Before going to the airport, they decided to grab something to eat for breakfast.
What he didn’t realize was that he was still wearing that hat and people were looking at them…
One of the people inside the restaurant called Busboys and Poets was Rosalynd Harris, who worked there as a waitress.
The past Saturday, she was at the Women’s March and she was still filled with energy. Then, she saw the new customers…
Rosalynd’s job at the Busboys and Poets was only a part-time job, as she’s also a professional dancer.
The restaurant she works at promotes social justice and that day it was packed with customers wearing pins and t-shirts from the Women’s March.
The restaurant was filled with artwork honoring famous black leaders, and with that in mind, when the three customers wearing those red hats, they did stuck out like a sore thumb.
So what did Rosalynd do? As a server, you’re supposed to do your job, no matter what people show up in the restaurant…
Irrespective of their political or religious views, people had a right to sit at a table and eat their lunch as long as they were behaving.
Rosalynd had no idea how these men would treat her, but she headed over to their table.
The 25-year-old waitress knew that everyone noticed the three men in red hats. But she decided to treat them just like she does with all customers.
So, she smiled and greeted the men, who were taken by surprise! You won’t believe just how surprised she’d be in the end!
The men greeted her as cheerfully as she did and they told her they were from West Texas and came for the inauguration.
Rosalynd knew they were Trump supporters, but however different their political views were, she would treat them with respect.
As the waitress approached them with such a big smile, Jason White was caught off guard.
He recalls in a later interview with the reporters – after this story blew up – that they talked about the food and Rosalynd was a breath of fresh air.
“She started laughing when we said we were from West Texas and she said, ‘I can tell you’re from the South,'” White recalled.
Rosalynd herself was impressed that the men were treating her with the same cheerfulness. Then, White asks her this…
“I said, ‘What’s your favorite thing on the menu?’ She said the avocado panini is delicious, and I love avocado, so I got that…,” said White.
But let’s look at the story from his point of view, from the second he and his friends entered the restaurant!
Jason White is a 37-year old dentist from Lubbock, Texas. As he entered the restaurant, he realized that everyone was looking at them. He told his friend “you need to take your hat off.”
But it was too late now, although they did tuck away the hats. “We started getting looks,” White recalled in the interview.
“I don’t want people to think we’re coming in here to flaunt our Trump stuff,” explained White to his friend.
“We’re just coming here to have lunch,” he said under his breath so that he won’t draw too much attention. Then, the young waitress approached…
Thinking they’d not be treated kindly, White braced himself, but as she approached, the waitress smiled at them and she was so casual that the three men could finally relax.
“It was a relief for both of us. This was just lunch,” said White. But here’s what made this story go viral worldwide!
The dentist recalled his morning at the restaurant with a smile and said that “we interacted like regular human beings, not white, not black, not Trump supporter, not black waitress.”
So, he decided on the spot to make Rosalynd’s day brighter.
As Jason and his friends finished their breakfast, he saw the bill. They had to pay $72.60, but without letting his friends know about it, White decided to leave the kind waitress a message.
Little did he know he’d give interview after interview for his good deed.
After finishing their meal, and paying the bill, the three men left the restaurant. The waitress then returned to the table to clean it and picked up the note.
Here’s how Rosalynd reacted when she read what Jason had written on it.
On the bill, Jason wrote a message for the waitress: “We may come from different cultures and may disagree on certain issues, but if everyone would share their smile and kindness like your beautiful smile, our country will come together as one people.”
But that was just part of the message. When Rosalynd read the entire bill, she couldn’t believe her eyes! It must have been a mistake!
Jason continued, saying that together, as a whole, irrespective of the race or gender: “Not race. Not gender. Just American. God Bless!”
Then, Rosalynd’s jaw was wide open as she saw that she received a 625 percent tip!
White’s symbolic gesture was as a nod to the 45th president, he said in an interview. His friends had no idea what he did.
Witnessing both the inauguration and the Women’s March, Jason was moved and saw what it meant to be an American.
The story went viral after Busboys and Poets shared a photo of the receipt on Twitter, writing: “We rise by lifting others. A lovely act of kindness.”
So what did Jason have to say about his kind deed going viral?
“I’m extremely humbled by all of this,” said Jason. “It’s not about me and her… I just want people to take the example, and stop and think a little bit before they judge people — on all sides.”
Meanwhile, Rosalynd learned an important lesson.
“You automatically assume if someone supports Trump that they have ideas about you… but the customer is more embracing than even some of my more liberal friends,” said Rosalynd.
“And there was a real authenticity in our exchange,” she added, explaining that her perspective has completely changed…
“This definitely reshaped my perspective. Republican, Democrat, liberal are all subcategories to what we are experiencing. It instills a lot of hope.”
Also, she admitted that Jason’s generosity was very helpful, especially since she was struggling with money.
Not being able to pay her bills as a professional dancer, Rosalynd had begun waitressing. She was just in the process of looking for a new apartment and needed extra money to pay the up-front costs.
Getting the extra $450 was “a huge weight off my shoulders,” she said.
“This is being taken as a black-and-white situation, and it was more two people having an authentic moment,” she explained.
Meanwhile, Jason also had some thoughts on that morning at the restaurant.
In an interview with the reporters, Jason White explained that “we have to think about being better Americans, we have to look into ourselves and how we treat one another.
“If everyone did a little something to show respect… we can love one another,” he added.
He concluded that what made him send the waitress this message along with the symbolic tip was that we could all change the world if we wouldn’t have these preconceived perceptions about people.
“As I sat there I thought about the entire weekend and I thought I don’t know her, she doesn’t know me, but if most Americans have a preconceived perception about people then we’re never going to get better.”
Rosalynd said that what Jason left her was more than money. It was a message that she shouldn’t make assumptions.
It was a message that we can all have a connection, no matter what our political views are.
You can achieve so many great things with a kind smile and a cheerful attitude. It not only brightens other people’s days, but it will also make your day as well!
The young waitress said that this interaction was “a beautiful story,” and we’re sure she will never forget it.