The owner of a tire shop in Ann Arbor, Mich., is coming under quite a bit of fire after trying to defend himself for saying that he doesn't want the business of black or "ghetto" people, Mic reports.
It all started when Ypsilanti resident Madison Callanan left a negative Yelp review about her experience at Whitney's Tire and Auto Repair, claiming that when she called and asked about a tire, she was told, "I don't have time for stupid questions," "You sound f—ked up" and "I'm treating you like the dog you are."
The review received a reply from someone going by the name "Jim S." who claimed to be the owner and manager of the repair shop, but it wasn't the apology that one might have expected.
"Most reviews will be left by blacks from Ypsilanti because I don't want them to call here," Jim S. wrote in his response to Callanan. "Nothing against them, but given an examination, I found a way to make a boatload more money avoiding them doing commercial water heaters.
"We stick to UofM related clients, a more appropriate fit given they reside near our shop. Ghetto folks need to stay in the Ghetto and not come to Ann Arbor," the comment continued.
According to Mic, University of Michigan student Shalynn Renee Vaughn called the auto shop to ask the price of a tire and recorded the conversation with Jim. S., in which he apparently said that he doesn't service "monkeys."
"There's no law against refusing service to ghetto people. I don't serve f—king monkeys, little f—king primates," Jim S. allegedly told Vaughn in the recording, which was provided to the site.
In a separate phone interview with Mic, Jim S. insisted that he isn't racist and that his use of the word "ghetto" has nothing to do with race.
"We really don't want to serve ghetto people; that's a fact," he said. "Race has nothing to do with this. Let me clarify: What we're trying to avoid is people who, number one, can't afford service.
"I understand that a lot of people find racism to be the worst thing in the world," he added when asked by the Mic reporter if he understood why some might be upset by his words.
Read more at Mic.