"All Fags Will Burn in Hell": Your Lovely Yellow Cab Greeting?
Homophobia with your video entertainment.
Nathan Joel Kasselder and a couple of friends were in F Bar in Montrose last night when they needed a cab, so they called Yellow Cab.
The cab came equipped with three video monitors for passengers, all of which were playing a reggae music video.
The video suddenly stopped for a second, and on the screen flashed the message "All fags will burn in hell." Then the video resumed.
Kasselder was, naturally enough, taken aback.
"The driver refused to give his name last night for obvious reasons once I confronted him about how grossly inappropriate the content was," he tells Hair Balls. "He gave a lukewarm apology and then I asked if he was apologizing because he really thought that was wrong or because it was the apparent right thing to do. He actually responded with, 'I'm apologizing because that's what you want to hear from me.' Stellar gentleman."
At first, the driver said the message "just happened to be part of the YouTube video" being played.
Kasselder called Yellow Cab's complaint line and didn't fare much better.
"I spoke with a Beatrice in customer service," he says. "She scribbled down some basic info and said someone may get back to me, until I reminded her she didn't even ask for my phone number."
He did better than us -- we asked to talk to whoever answers reporters' questions, and then were put on hold for so long we must have heard about Houston being home to NASA a half-dozen times.
The recording did note that all Yellow Cab drivers are "self-employed independent-contract drivers," so we're guessing that would be the company's explanation if anyone ever actually got off hold with them.
"Normally I'd just brush it off, but for the first time in my entire life I experienced blatant discrimination," Kasselder says. "We were in suits after attending Fashion Houston and don't really think we were screaming 'I'm gay,' and even if we were, it's inexcusable."
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Houston, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.