Yes, this is yet another story of a sorry white person calling the police on a black person for something trivial —his moniker? “Coupon Carl”—but it’s also a cautionary tale of the blowback of such actions; or, as my mama says, “When you point a finger, there are three pointing back at you.”
Morry Matson, a white Chicago CVS manager who called the police on a black woman who tried to use a manufacturer’s coupon at the pharmacy (yes, you read that correctly), was captured on video in the absurd interaction.
The woman, Camilla Hudson, told Block Club Chicago that she initially tried to use the self-checkout, but it lacked a mechanism for taking coupons. It reports:
The store’s manager, Matson, offered to assist her on a register, but the situation escalated when he called for another manager, she said. That manager, whose name was not known, told Hudson they couldn’t accept the voucher because he’d never seen one like it before and accused her of possibly handwriting it, she said.
The situation escalated as Hudson was rightfully offended at being called a liar and a thief. She was asked to leave but stood her ground as Matson then called police.
A screenshot of the Facebook post telling of her side of the story (taken down by the social media platform) is below:
Here is the copy of the coupon:
The scalding hot tea, though, is that Matson himself has a history of deceit —ironically for transgressions similar to bringing a bogus coupon into a CVS.
In 2016, DNA Info Chicago (now in archives), reported that “A vote on extending the lakefront path from Edgewater to Rogers Park was yanked from the November ballot after city officials ruled that five pages of signatures on the petitions calling for the vote were forged.”
Guess who the forger was?
Yep, old Coupon Carl (aka Morry Matson).
Raw Story reports that Morry was leading an effort to build an expensive waterfront bike path to a beach near his own home, saying that improving the beachfront would not mean that there would be an influx of “people from the South Side” (and we know who he means).
Yet apparently, an opponent of the bike path discovered that in at least five of the 13 pages of his ballot measure contained signatures written by Matson himself.
“I laughed out loud on the bus,” said Anne Sullivan, who actually read the signatures on the way home from the Chicago Board of Elections, to DNA Info. “I said are you kidding me? You just submitted this without even thinking anybody would look at it?”
DNA Info reports:
The City of Chicago’s Board of Election Commissioners and its handwriting expert agreed with several of Sullivan’s complaints after reviewing the pages — primarily that five of at least 13 sheets of signatures, save for two names, were written in Matson’s own handwriting and listed addresses for some of those signatures that weren’t homes.
Matson admitted he had signed some of the signatures himself.
For example, Matson said friends and co-workers at the Ridge and Broadway Walgreen’s where he works allowed him to sign the petition on their behalf, and he listed the address of Walgreens as the addresses of their homes.
Sullivan said other signatures and places of residents included Clark Street restaurants, urgent care centers and firefighters who worked, but didn’t live, in the neighborhood.
Petitioners are allowed 90 days to collect signatures, but Matson told DNAinfo he had been gathering names for more than a year and three months.
By law, that’s not allowed.
The board of elections found that “there was a pattern of fraud, false swearing and total disregard of the requirements of the election code” and threw out the measure.
But when a black woman brings a manufacturer’s coupon into his store, she has the cops called on her.
“You’re calling me a liar, you’re calling me a thief, you’re calling me a forger,” said Hudson of the incident. “It’s not that they didn’t take the coupon or refused to take the coupon, it’s how he did it. He was nasty, he was unprofessional, he was dismissive, he was accusatory—his entire tone and demeanor was offensive and problematic.”
The “forger” part is the most ironic.
Hudson said in her post that there were three officers who showed up in response to Matson’s call and she spoke with them before leaving the store.
The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Matson is now running for 48th Ward alderman and one of his campaign promises is “increased police presence throughout Alderman Matson’s 48th Ward.”
According to his website, he was a state delegate for President Donald Trump in the 2016 election and is president of the Log Cabin Republicans of Illinois, a group advocating for LGBTQ conservatives.
For their part, CVS has apologized for the incident, according to Block Club Chicago:
We sincerely apologize to Ms. Hudson for her experience in one of our stores,” CVS said in a statement issued to Block Club Chicago. “Our Region Director in Chicago contacted Ms. Hudson as soon as we were made aware of this incident. CVS has begun an investigation and we will take any corrective action that is warranted to prevent it from happening again.
CVS Pharmacy does not tolerate any practices that discriminate against any customer and we are committed to maintaining a welcoming and diverse environment in our stores,” the statement continued. “We have firm non-discrimination policies in place to help ensure that all customers are treated with respect and dignity. Profiling or any other type of discriminatory behavior is strictly prohibited.
I think Coupon Carl needs a job where he doesn’t interact with the public, don’t you?