Social media is often incredibly useful for spreading the word about bad things that happen and organizing a response. But what happens a false social media posting starts to spread? Well if it involves someone of Arabic descent and an alleged denial of service for someone in the military, the xenophobes grab their American flags and guns and head right down there to protest.
A Holly, Michigan Mobil gas station is receiving threats after a misunderstanding was blown out of proportion by social media. When a woman posted to Facebook her perspective of an encounter that her husband, who is a reservist for the U.S. Military, had at a Mobil gas station while in uniform, social media users were quick to share the status update. The woman claimed that her husband was denied gas at a gas station by the clerk, who she said was Arabic. She presumed the refusal was in protest to her husband’s uniform. Quickly, a boycott was created by eager social media users without looking into the facts.
According to the Mobil station, the reservist was “refused gas,” because the Mobil gas station was out of the type of gas the man wanted.
The presumptions led to threats against the Mobil station. Nick Ghalib, the manager of the Mobil, spoke with Inquisitr in a phone interview. Nick was the Mobil employee that was originally accused of the bigoted comment. Nick told Inquisitr that there was no more premium or mid-grade gas available. Those types of gasoline were sold out by noon that day. Only regular gas was available. Nick says he tried to explain that to the man, but the reservist just left quickly. Nick recognizes that he has a strong accent, but wants to make it known that neither he, nor the Mobil gas station discriminates against anyone. He said that everyone is welcome at the Holly, Mobil.Diana Clark Davis of Holly, Michigan wrote on a Facebook group for people who grew up in Holly, “I looked at the original poster’s page and that article has had nearly 8,000 shares just off her page so far.” When the reservist’s wife took down the status, Facebook users then jumped to the conclusion that Facebook took down the post. At that point social media users began sharing the screen-grab of the status in place of the status itself.
And then a bunch of people show up waving guns and American flags around. After deleting the post, the soldier’s wife posted another status update, then closed down the account. That update said:
“i am honestly shocked that it got out like it didnt and i am aware these people are getting threatening calls i have delete what post i could because i do not want anyone hurt what so ever. my husband was very upset with me for even saying anything because he does not like social media for that reason. i posted my post out of anger b.c. to many men and women do get denied service and that’s what my husband felt happened to him when the man said we don’t serve gas here.”
Really? Military personnel get denied service in this country? Where, exactly? Give me an example. Gay people, on the other hand, get denied service regularly and I bet a whole bunch of the same people who showed up with guns and flags think that’s just dandy.