Monday, April 13, 2015

Do you believe the cabbie or the lesbians?

It looks as if we have conflicting stories as to what happened in a taxi-driver's taxi-cab a few years ago in New York City.

The driver claims that two lesbian passengers began kissing heavily in his backseat. He states they were also touching each other in a sexual manner. He then told them, basically, to stop it because the cab is his workplace and seeing people kissing and making out in his cab makes him feel uncomfortable.  They left his cab and they and he exchanged insults.

The lesbians have a different story. Based on what I have been able to learn, they seem to claim that they lightly kissed each other and the taxi driver over-reacted and threw them out of the cab because they are lesbians.

There is, basically, no proof to determine who is telling the truth and who isn't, but the lesbian couple filed a complaint against the cab driver to the city and the City of New York decided that the lesbians were telling the truth and fined the taxi driver $15,000. He is now supposed to pay $5,000 to each woman and $5,000 to the city.

I'm quite a bit shocked to read this story because it's a 'he-said/she-said' situation. A he-said/she-said situation is when you have two different stories by two different people (or groups of people) and there is no proof to show which story is true.  Nevertheless the city sided with the lesbian couple. Why?

I may be cynical for saying this, but the lesbians are white and lesbians. The cabbie is an Arabic gentleman. There are lots and lots of gay and lesbian folks in NY City and, as a group, they are pretty politically powerful. If you offend the gays and lesbians in New York City, there can be negative consequences.  No politician wants to offend gays or lesbians. In fact, many politicians try to make the gay and lesbian community very happy. I believe that New York City tried to make a couple white, wealthy, powerful lesbian folks happy and created an injustice for the dark-skinned and relatively powerless cabbie. Basically the city administrators probably thought to themselves, "Who is more important to us? White gay people or poor Arabic taxi drivers?" There was no proof, so why choose to believe the lesbian folks?

I think a real injustice was done to this cabbie. If they were kissing heavily in his taxi cab, he had the right, in my opinion, to make them leave. If you are a dentist and two people are kissing and touching in your waiting room, you will certainly kick them out or tell them to stop. It was his taxi cab and people have to respect his workplace. What do you think?

Here's an article about what happened:

Vocabulary to help you understand the article:

conflicting stories - the stories do not agree with each other, the stories contradict each other

to file a complaint - to write out and submit a complaint about possible wrong behavior 

to side with - to agree with, to take the side of

to be cynical - to question why a person really did something; to suspect that a person did not do something for the right reasons

to bark orders at someone - to strongly tell someone to do or not to do something. A dog 'barks'.

to discriminate against - to treat a person or persons differently and badly because they are from a minority group

"Don't make me out to be an asshole!" - when the lesbians told the driver he was discriminating against them, he told them they should not try to make it look as if he was the type of person who would do that (an asshole).

in damages - this means he hurt the lesbians and he has to pay for the damages or harm he caused

b******, c**** - bitches, cunts (hey folks, the English language includes dirty, vulgar words and you have a right to know what they mean...someone may use these words in your presence one day! :P)

a whore - a prostitute; a woman who sells her body for sex to others

a peck on the lips - a light kiss

a standard of decency - he tries to do the right thing all the time

to appeal the decision - to go to a higher authority to have the decision over-turned

to be substantiated - to be proved 

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