Discrimination | News | South Dakota

Teen Says Taco John's Manager Forced Him to Wear 'GAYTARD' Name Tag at Work: VIDEO


Tyler Brandt, a 16-year-old openly gay teen in Yankton, South Dakota, said his manager at Taco John's was verbally abusive toward him and forced him to wear a name tag that said "GAYTARD" on it, KELO reports:

Brandt"He pulled me into the office and gave me a nametag that read 'Gaytard' on it and asked me to wear it. So, I put it on because I didn't want to upset him and I felt that if I did do anything to upset him, it would cause me to lose my job because he'd be looking for ways to fire me," Brandt said.

Brandt says he tried taking it off several times, but he says the manager forced him to wear it all day in front of the customers.

"I would always stay behind the till so they couldn't see the name tag, I didn't want them to see it, but even though they couldn't see it, he would still call me by the name across the store and customers would notice," Brandt said.

Watch the report, AFTER THE JUMP...

Brandt said that he decided to quit and was mocked even as he left:

"After I handed them over my uniform, they really didn't say anything, they just said 'ok' and when we went to walk out, he lifted out his hand and said 'Nametag?' as though he deserved to have that name tag after his son labeled me," Brandt said.

Taco John's CEO Jeff Linville released a statement to KELO:

At Taco John’s, we believe everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. We take any accusation of workplace harassment very seriously. The type of discrimination that reportedly took place recently in the Yankton, South Dakota restaurant is deplorable. Such actions will not be tolerated by our company. Taco John’s is committed to doing all we can to make certain nothing like this happens again in any of our restaurants.

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  1. What the hell is Taco John's?

    Posted by: Sam | Jun 26, 2014 8:59:17 AM

  2. So has this been investigated?

    Is the manager suspended pending the outcome?

    Will he be fired if others confirmed he did this.

    Taco John's needs to be avoided clearly - that statement by the CEO is pathetic.

    Posted by: MaryM | Jun 26, 2014 9:05:19 AM

  3. @sam It's a Chinese laundry. WTF do you think it is?!

    Posted by: Quicksilver | Jun 26, 2014 9:05:54 AM

  4. Really @ SAM? That is your stupid, insensitive comment on this story of a gay teen who was humiliated at his job, in an era when so many gay youth are committing suicide?

    Maybe you should move your stupid butt to South Dakota, then you would know 'what the hell Taco John's' is, then he could learn that gay people can be equally stupid and insensitive.

    Posted by: Ricco | Jun 26, 2014 9:10:31 AM

  5. But it has cute little hearts.

    Posted by: crispy | Jun 26, 2014 9:10:54 AM

  6. Another day on TR when a TROLL gets the first comment on a sensitive story.

    Way to go Andy. Is this site EVER going to require registration or log in (e.g. FB, G+) or will it forever be the wild west of *ssholery haterade in the comments.

    One day Andy, you will get called out on allowing this BS.

    How about no access to the next Dem Convention because you allow hate on your site?

    Posted by: Qj201 | Jun 26, 2014 9:13:46 AM

  7. Open up the pin on the back of the name tag and slam it into the owner's hand.

    Posted by: Frank | Jun 26, 2014 9:31:49 AM

  8. Who CARES if there's a troll on the board? THAT'S what angers you?

    A group of gays in South Dakota should pay this manager a little visit and call him out in front of the customers and staff. I would say they should spray paint "I'M A BIGOT" on his car in bright red, but that's just my anger talking.

    Posted by: will | Jun 26, 2014 9:35:49 AM

  9. I would like to know why there is no mention of customers reaction. If I ate there and saw that I would definitely have said something. This story says a lot not only about the manager but about the culture of South Dakota. I hope this isn't another hoax while at the same time I hope a manager wouldn't be so incredibly stupid.

    Posted by: Terry | Jun 26, 2014 9:37:23 AM

  10. I wonder how soon until this comes out as a hoax?

    Sorry for the cynicism, for the life of me, I am having a hard time recalling any of these types of stories as being anything other than fabrication.

    Posted by: Rad | Jun 26, 2014 9:40:26 AM

  11. totally disgraceful......could u even imagine if a manager made a Black person wear a name tag with N...tard??? I hope he finds a lawyer to sue the crap out of them

    Posted by: disgusted american | Jun 26, 2014 9:51:26 AM

  12. But the question is did Taco John *do* anything about the manager's actions?


    Posted by: Joseph Singer | Jun 26, 2014 9:53:02 AM

  13. I hope that kid can get the hell out of the hell-hole that is SD. I grew up there and can easily imagine this crap taking place all over that backward state.

    Posted by: bkmn | Jun 26, 2014 9:55:34 AM

  14. "I wonder how soon until this comes out as a hoax?"

    I think that is a reasonable assumption for these stories. The vast majority as of late have turned out to be fabricated.

    Posted by: Nat | Jun 26, 2014 10:02:12 AM

  15. "I wonder how soon until this comes out as a hoax?"

    I think that is a reasonable assumption for these stories. The vast majority as of late have turned out to be fabricated.

    Posted by: Nat | Jun 26, 2014 10:02:13 AM

  16. He is only 16 years old. What a sad introduction to the workforce.

    Posted by: Hey Darlin' | Jun 26, 2014 10:07:48 AM

  17. This sounds like every crappy summer job every teenager had to suffer through since forever.

    Posted by: anon | Jun 26, 2014 10:08:39 AM

  18. The manager was using the slur, "retard", and ridiculing this kid for being gay all in one neat and tidy name tag.

    Posted by: parkrunner | Jun 26, 2014 10:15:50 AM

  19. I know it would be difficult for a gay youth to pull off, but the better response would be to wear that name tag with PRIDE! Metaphorically, throw the tag in his face, and make it look like a public relations ploy: "My boss wants all of our customers to know we're proud to hire gaytards to serve them. We support gaytards." Do that, and you're making a statement supportive of not only gays, but of the intellectually challenged, since those are the groups derided by the manager's prejudice. If asked exactly what a "gaytard" might be, refer them to the manager. And don't be afraid to get fired; everybody does at least once.

    Posted by: Chuck Mielke | Jun 26, 2014 10:17:23 AM

  20. The restaurant manager's side of it:

    Restaurant Manager John Scott says Brandt chose the slur himself as a nickname joke, and was not forced to wear the name tag.

    Read More: Gay Teen Says Manager at Taco John's Gave Him Offensive Tag | http://ksoo.com/gay-teen-says-manager-at-yankton-taco-johns-gave-him-offensive-tag/?trackback=tsmclip

    OK. Sure.

    Posted by: jason MacBride | Jun 26, 2014 10:34:02 AM

  21. I am in full support of this kid, and I hope the A-holes at Taco John's get what's coming to them.

    Simmer down.

    Posted by: Sam | Jun 26, 2014 10:47:16 AM

  22. Chuck Mielke,

    I have no doubt that you are one of those broken gay men who calls himself "queer" and thinks he is being raw and transgressive, even while the world laughs at you. One good thing: the kid in this story will not heed your awful advice and you are unlikely to every be in a position to influence a child.

    Posted by: Jack | Jun 26, 2014 11:04:56 AM

  23. Sue and sue kid! Contact Lambda Legal, ACLU, or other gay organizations that can give referral. This is pure discrimination and th ass hat should pay.

    Posted by: RK | Jun 26, 2014 11:22:59 AM

  24. Time for one of our LGBT Legal teams (you know the orgs that are always begging for money) to step up and jump on this case!!!!

    Posted by: aj | Jun 26, 2014 11:36:54 AM

  25. Sorry to say this, but I'm getting a big hoax vibe on this story.

    Posted by: fsinsd | Jun 26, 2014 11:48:04 AM

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