TikTok Is Furious At IHOP's 'Racist Karen'

Poor customer service is sometimes an unavoidable occurrence at a restaurant. It might be because of incompetent servers or simply honest mistakes. Or, despite the old adage that the customer is always right, could be the fault of a patron.

Taking matters to a whole different level is the experience witnessed by a customer at IHOP, which they believed was racism in action. According to a video uploaded to TikTok by user j._bianca, a customer at an IHOP location in Orlando was subjected to discrimination because they did not receive straws with their meal, even though other customers in the restaurant did.

The video — which has amassed over 100,000 views — shows people sitting at their tables in a restaurant. The video's narrator calls out a server named Faith, who allegedly provided straws to all the white people in the restaurant while informing black customers that there were no straws left. 

The encounter has triggered a debate in the video's comments.

TikTok viewers can't decide whether to support the IHOP customer or the server

Opinion is split among TikTok viewers on whether the IHOP waitress' actions were racist or a response to a genuine shortage of straws. Comments have advocated for the sacking of the worker and argued that even a $1 tip would have been too much. Another reply urged the outing of the restaurant's exact location.

However, multiple commentators have labeled the customer a Karen, stating that the video doesn't show straws on any other tables. TikTok users have argued that other diners can be seen drinking without straws and suggested that the restaurant may have used up all of its straws.

The incident isn't the first racism scandal IHOP has faced. In 1992, AP reports that the restaurant settled out of court for $185,000 after Black customers claimed they had been refused entry to a location, while West Virginia Record reports that a former IHOP employee who is Black sued the chain for racial discrimination in 2019.