An Arkansas man has cried discrimination after employees at the Oaklawn Casino denied him entry. The reason: he carried a Louis Vuitton purse.
NBC affiliate KARK reports that Jordan Kirk, a gay man, visited the casino last Friday with his husband. To his shock, security guards refused to let him enter the building, telling him that he would need to return his purse to the car first.
Countless women carried similar bags around the casino, so Kirk pressed the guard for an explanation. “Men don’t wear purses,” the guard said.
“It is a double standard,” Kirk contends. “If you’re going to allow it for one person, you’ve got to allow it for everybody.”
Kirk and his husband pointed out that the guard had no problem with women carrying similar bags.
“I was like well she is taking her purse inside,” Kirk said, “and the lady behind us was like ‘do I need to take my bag to the car?’ and he was like ‘no, purses are allowed.”
Kirk and his husband then asked to speak to a supervisor, who reiterated that bags are not allowed in the casino. Kirk pressed the supervisor on the gender issue as well.
“I asked him if a woman was carrying my bag could she take it in the door and he told me yes–but because I wasn’t, I couldn’t take it inside,” said Kirk.
The management finally allowed Kirk to enter after searching his bag for explosives. Several other women carrying purses entered while the bag was being searched, and were totally confused by the situation.
“Almost every woman that was behind us was like “why aren’t you searching our bag– the woman behind us was like that’s discriminating,” Kirk recalls.
Ultimately, Kirk and his husband were left alone after the entry fiasco. The management later issued an apology to him on Facebook. Oaklawn Casino also released a statement to the press regarding the incident.
“We’ve appropriately addressed Mr. Kirk’s incident with the team members who were involved along with their supervisors,” the statement read in part.
“As an important point of clarification, the General Manager of Oaklawn Racing Casino Resort was not present during this incident but our regularly scheduled security team and casino floor manager were there and did permit Mr Kirk to enter the facility with his bag.
Finally, Oaklawn would like to apologize for any inconvenience this incident may have caused Mr. Kirk.”
Maybe the guard was just jealous. It was a pretty cool Louis Vuitton bag.