CHICAGO (CBS) — A waitress at a trendy Fulton Market cocktail lounge is now suspended and accused of spitting on President Donald Trump’s son, Eric Trump.
On social media The Aviary is being praised by Trump opponents for being part of the resistance. At the same time, it’s being vilified by Trump supporters for undue disrespect to the first family. All the while the owners of the restaurant said it’s not a debate that they want to be part of.
Eric Trump went to The Aviary for a business meeting but got a lot more than the exotic drinks and high-end food he was expecting.
According to a spokesperson for the Trump Organization, the president’s private business where Eric is Executive Vice President, a waitress at The Aviary spit in Eric Trump’s face.
Eric cast the act in political terms, telling Breitbart News, “It was a purely disgusting act by somebody who clearly has emotional problems. For a party that preaches tolerance, this once again demonstrates they have very little civility.”
Eric Trump said Chicago police wanted to press charges, but he declined.
The Aviary is co-owned by Grant Achatz and Nick Kokonas, also owners of Alinea, known around the world for its highly inventive food and drinks. But the owners said they weren’t entirely sure what happened.
“What is certain is this: No customer should ever be spit upon. We have not spoken with the employee, but our human resources team has. In the meantime, placed her on leave,” they said.
And the owners criticized those both heaping praise and scorn upon their restaurant.
“Hundreds of people are calling for the demise of our business, threatening our employees and posting fake reviews…they are wrong to do so based on the actions of a lone individual. So too, however, are those people wrong who are praising this as an act of civil disobedience. A degrading act lowers the tenor of debate,” they said.
For his part, Nick Kokonas has stepped slightly into political waters before. After President Trump served Clemson’s national football champs fast food at the White House, Kokonas invited them to Chicago for what he said an actual celebration dinner should be.
Eric Trump said the waitress was detained in handcuffs for two hours by the Secret Service and by Chicago police before he declined to press charges.
A member of the Trump Coalition in Illinois said the waitress needs to apologize and that her actions are not right.
“For the president’s son to be spit at, it’s the ultimate disrespect,” said Val Ojeda of the Illinois Trump Coalition.
CBS 2 has reached out to the person who started the GoFundMe but has not heard back yet.
Clarification: An earlier version of this story reported that a Go Fund Me page had been set up to benefit the worker. That campaign has been removed when the creator learned that that person who claimed to be the worker was not telling the truth.