Hooters Jokes About Rape on Its Facebook Page

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By Shawn Paul Wood Comment

Hooters-Culture

Yeah. Hold that thought, kid.

I know. I know. Fellas, you all go here for the wings. Okay, now that we have that sage excuse out of the way to clear your conscience, something terribly serious happened at the home of the owl that has most of its female servers wondering, “WTH?” (‘H’ being for ‘Hooters.’)

Despite what is said on CBS’ “Undercover Boss,” many people do believe the women in this fine establishment are being exploited. However, if they want that cash, maybe the servers don’t mind so much: they can almost ignore the handsy drunk dude in the corner while shunning the douchey guy whose wedding ring is clearly in his pocket.

However, when you joke about rape, stuff gets real.

Over the weekend, someone on the Hooters’ social media team got him/herself fired in record time–but not before all hell broke loose–with a vile attempt at rape humor (two words that will never, ever be OK together).

Here’s what happened.

the-rape-joke-in-question

According to several reports, this photo links off-site and shows a young woman laughing, as they often do. She has a blanket stuck to her shorts that, if you squint real hard and have a juvenile mind, looks like it could pass for something else. And then there was this:

The caption below the photo reads ‘Exhibit A: Proof she was asking for it, your honor.’

It is stunning how quickly this post put Hooters back in the Stone Age (as if the brand were a paragon of gender equality beforehand). Quite a few women already take issue with the scantily clad “bosom buddies” at the orange and white shack, but this was a surefire way for the company to further destroy whatever’s left of its credibility.

There is absolutely nothing funny about rape. No matter whether the person trying to make a related joke is a professional comic at the Improv or some perverted hipster doing Facebook posts at Hooters, it’s not comical, amusing or anything close to appropriate in polite or even impolite society. And yet, there it is for all the world to read … and hate. You won’t be surprised to learn that the Hooters crisis communications team isn’t too strong either:

Good one. What’s next? The intern did it? Customers took it out of context? MEMO to Hooters PR team: Do not hire a “crisis expert.” Do not stay quiet. Work with what you have and begin engaging with the community.

Unlike the lame excuse that guy gives his wife about the buffalo wing sauce on his collar, this is not one of those things that blows over.