Three Trump supporters left Utah waiter Ashton Bindrup a message with an anti-gay slur written on the back of a $5 bill.
The exchange happened last Saturday, August 15. While serving a table of three adults, each in a “Trump 2020” hat, one of the patrons asked Bindrup for a pen. When he returned later to collect his tip, he discovered the message.
“I haven’t wanted to turn it into the bank yet, I don’t know how to explain that one,” Bindrup told Fox 13 News.
Written on the back of the bill: “Get out of America, f*g.”
“I picked it up and was immediately like, ‘Oh, this is written on my tip,’” Bindrup explained. “It’s shocking. It’s not okay.”
“I think if anyone got it, they would think it was hate speech,” he added.
Bindrup took to Facebook to share his experience. “I am both family and friend to many kind Trump supporters,” he wrote. “I see you and hear you. I have even experienced and can point out some things I have liked about the Trump Presidency. I love you guys, even if I don’t support your candidate.”
“I’m telling you this,” he continued, “because if you are a Trump supporter, I also believe that you have a responsibility to help check the hate and the anger that you see in other like-minded Republicans, friends, and family…I think you need to ask yourselves why it is so many of Trump’s other supporters speak and act with hate and with discrimination. Because if you believe differently, then these individuals are giving you a bad name.”
For Bindrup, the incident represents a missed opportunity as much as an incident of harassment.
“I wish that they had said it to my face,” Bindrup told Fox 13. “I’m not quick to anger or quick to be offended, but I don’t know. You have to think about that kind of hate. You have to wonder, ‘How does someone get to that point?’”
“We have to help people become not so biased,” he concluded. “This needs to be a learning opportunity, above all else, because there’s hate speech out there and we can all do our part to say things differently.”
Though he has appointed several openly-queer officials to governmental positions, the Trump administration is widely seen as the most anti-LGBTQ administration in American history due to its policy positions curtailing queer rights.