A 14 year old girl in Scotland has put a lot of us to shame with a random act of generosity and in the process was able to take the moral high ground with a multinational company.
The girl known only as Ami, entered a Starbucks in Glasgow and got the man a sandwich, only for the barista to callously remark ‘Save your money and let nature take its course’. Prompting Ami to not only buy the man’s sandwich, but to blast Starbucks on Twitter in a tweet that has since gone viral.
The tweet was ‘So f***** disgusted with @StarbucksUK went in to one of your Glasgow branches to get some food for a homeless boy who was physically shaking from the cold and was told off a worker that I’d be better ‘saving my money and letting nature take its course.’ I’m at a loss for words.’
The man in question has had a tough beginning to life, after being in the care system and is estranged from his other family after relationships broke down, and this one simple act of kindness was lambasted by an employee who knows nothing of the man’s circumstances or his reasons for sleeping rough in one of the toughest areas in Scotland.
As humans, we are not inherently beyond good or evil. We naturally try to tread the path in the middle of the two. However, most people, when we see others in need, will try to help as best as we can and with what limited resources we have. Having an empathetic heart isn’t wrong, and being empathetic is what separates us from other species.
For a glorified coffee shop, who serve all kinds of people from all walks of life to not have protocols and training in place, especially when they pride themselves on being pretty ethical, sometimes to the point where Gwyneth Paltrow looks like an axe murderer in comparison, this incredulous, and hurtful comment the barista made is not only callous and hurtful, but also selfish and self absorbed.
The UK has had a very tough winter, and rough sleepers are dying from the cold. To walk past and not feel even the slightest sympathy for those sleeping rough in sub-zero temperatures makes you cold hearted.
Teenagers get a bad press, and rightly so, teenagers are known to be selfish, self absorbed and too busy with their own lives to worry about anyone but themselves, but for a school girl to so eloquently and beautifully slam a company over the treatment of a man shines a light on the redeeming features of teens.
They may be shallow and self absorbed, but somewhere in them, there are hearts, and they can see the world in a more complex way than children, but not through the cynical eyes of adults. They can imagine what it could be like to be in those shoes, but also want to help where they can.
So hats off to you Amy, you made a real impact on a lot of people that day.