'A Karen in the wild': More than $22,000 in donations pour in for a Starbucks employee who refused to serve a customer not wearing a face mask
Amber Lynn Gilles took a photo of Lenin Gutierrez, an employee at a Starbucks in San Diego, and complained on Facebook that he would not operate her because she was not wearing a face mask that San Diego County needed during the pandemic.
Amber Lynn Gilles / Facebook
Lenin Gutierrez was working on the front of a Starbuck in San Diego on Monday when a woman without a mask came in.
In San Diego County, people have to wear face cover to curb the spread of the coronavirus. So he asked if the woman Amber Lynn Gilles had one.
"She turned me around and said 'No, I don't need one' and she started cursing a storm," he said in a video posted on Facebook.
Gilles, who has since been referred to as "Karen", then shared a picture of Gutierrez on Facebook and criticized him for not serving her. The post was shared by tens of thousands of people.
A GoFundMe campaign has raised Gutierrez, an aspiring dancer, over $ 22,000.
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More than 2,000 people have spent more than $ 22,000 on a Starbucks employee who refused on Monday to serve a woman who wasn't wearing a face mask at the San Diego site he works on.
The customer, identified as Amber Lynn Gilles, took a photo of the employee Lenin Gutierrez and shared it with a complaint about him on Facebook. "Next time I'll wait for the cops and get a medical exemption," she wrote.
The post was shared around 47,000 times and had collected over 133,000 comments by Thursday - and Gilles had been referred to as "Karen".
Related Video: Experts in Making Effective DIY Face Masks
Despite the criticism of her, Gilles doubled. "Masks are stupid, and so are the people who wear them," she said in a comment on the post.
In San Diego County, people have had to wear face masks in public since May 1st. The corona virus spreads mainly through droplets when an infected person coughs, speaks, or sneezes. Research has shown that masks curb the spread of the disease.
"The covers help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and are part of our path to reopening San Diego," officials said.
By Thursday, 196,046 people in California had tested positive for COVID-19 and 5,726 had died, according to Johns Hopkins University. The state's outbreak is the second largest after New York.
Cloth masks, homemade facewear, bandanas, scarves, or neck gaiters are required when people in line in San Diego County, go to a store, use public transportation, pick up orders on the go, get medical help, or do some kind of essential work.
Matt Cowan launched a GoFundMe campaign to tip Gutierrez for "asserting himself against a Karen in the wild". More than $ 22,000 has already been raised.
Cowan told KGTV, a local ABC partner, that donors "gather around someone who does what they are supposed to do and tries to protect everyone else."
"It just shows that there are a lot of good people, and that outweighs the bad ones," said Cowan.
Gutierrez said in a video posted on Facebook on Wednesday that it was "shocking" to see an encounter that only took a few minutes to "grow up".
He described how he worked in the register on Monday and asked Gilles if she had a face mask. She said she didn't, but before he could show her a piece of paper that outlined the guidelines that Starbucks was following, "she turned and said," No, I don't need one, "and she started swearing a storm up, "he said.
Gutierrez said Gilles had stormed out of the shop just to return to ask for Gutierrez's name and take a picture of him. She also threatened to call "corporate," he said, before finally leaving.
The silver lining was the unexpected but "astonishing" outpouring of support that would help him realize his dream of becoming a dancer and sharing the art form with others.
"With this donation that everyone has made available with GoFundMe, I can make these dreams come true," he said. "I can fuel my passions even better now. So with all my heart, thank you so much."
Starbucks has lifted the ban on employees wearing Black Lives Matter gear after the game
Starbucks plans to close up to 400 stores as the coffee giant tries to prepare for an America after the pandemic
The latest viral "Karen" video shows a woman shouting "I have a black husband" as she collapses out of fear of being canceled
How the name Karen became a representative for problematic white women and an extremely popular meme
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