Black students kicked out of Australian Apple store because "they might steal something"

By midian182
Nov 12, 2015
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  1. A group of black teenage students were told to leave an Apple store in Melbourne, Australia, because staff were worried that they “might steal something.”

    The six boys from Maribyrnong College - Abdulahi, Gereng, Ésë, Mabior, Mohamed, and Petrieaged – managed to capture the incident, which took place at the Highpoint Shopping Centre, on video (below).

    “These guys [security guards] are just a bit worried about your presence in our store. They’re just worried you might steal something,” the Apple staff member can be heard saying in the clip. After a member of the group asks why they might steal something, the store worker replies: "Guys, end of discussion. I need to ask you to leave our store.”

    One of the teens, Ésë, said the incident started when an Apple employee asked the group to stop leaning on a table that was displaying some iPhones. The boys - who were born in Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria, Eritrea and Egypt and moved to Australia as children – allege that the store staff treat them in an intimidating way because of the color of their skin.

    "It was just really offensive when he said 'we are afraid you are going to steal something.' It was shocking; it was racism," Ese told Mashable, "He didn’t even give us a chance." Another member of the group, Mohamed Semra wrote “Racial profiling has to stop, happens to often in America we don't need here in Australia too,”(sic) on his Facebook wall and wants a public apology from Apple.

    The principle of the boys' school accompanied them back to the store the next day so they could request an apology from the manager, who said they are welcome back any time. The employee from the video said he apologized if his statement was taken out of context.

    While it’s unclear if the staff member will be reprimanded for his actions, an Apple spokesperson said the incident is under investigation and gave this statement: "We want every person who joins our team, every customer visiting our stores or calling for support to feel welcome. We believe in equality for everyone, regardless of race, age, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation. That applies throughout our company, around the world with no exceptions."

    Khalid Breezy, Petros Smalls, Deebo Ater Abdulahi Haji Ali Mohamed, Andy Gambino Nelson Mahad MohamudSimply Racism, made them apologise tho

    Posted by Francis Ose on Tuesday, November 10, 2015

    Permalink to story.

  2. alabama man

    alabama man TS Addict Posts: 194   +100

    Apple stuff doesn't even cost anything to make so better take the risk than have this sort of scandal.
  3. RzmmDX

    RzmmDX TS Addict Posts: 294   +58

    How does one actually steal an iPhone in an Apple store...

    Those things have that fancy security cable... sure, you could cut it and run like the wind.
    Oh, maybe that's why the store was extra careful as no one could actually catch them if it happened.
  4. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,811   +863

    Race card, white people steal too.
  5. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    Yep, I should know. Thought it was challenging back 30 years ago.
    Skidmarksdeluxe likes this.
  6. yRaz

    yRaz TS Evangelist Posts: 1,811   +863

    Well there are probably tons of white people who've been kicked out 9f apple stores because they look like they're going to steal something, only reason this is getting attention is because they're black.
  7. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,132   +478

    Their backpacks would be the only thing I would possibly flag as a theft risk. If they were wearing baggy pants and/or a loose hoody, that would also increase my suspicion. Also, we do not know if the guys have a history of theft or not. There is the possibility that they were acting suspicious in the store.

    What I am getting to is, we were not there. We have no idea what really happened. All we have is this little video and probably blowing something out of proportion.

    I am not trying to defend Apple. Heck, it could be a racist issue.
    psycros and crocography like this.
  8. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,327   +1,930

    It's even more so thesedays, I'm really struggling to outsprint the cops. :D
  9. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,327   +1,930

    Well if they were loitering about in the store and acting all suspicious then the staff were well within their rights to tell them to hit the road but we don't know that, maybe video footage might reveal more.
  10. 3volv3d

    3volv3d TS Booster Posts: 121   +49

    Yeah this is just tabloid journalism, at it's worst. We have this right to free speech, but the freakin journalists never know when to not print something.

    If there's a chance its racism, boom, how to build a bomb (thanks now the kids know and will be tempted), latest drug crazes (and again teens who didn't know now do).

    This was nothing more than a bunch of teens, who looked fishy, kicked out of a store. The proprietors or employees have the right to say, get ya dabs off our merch, and gtfo!
    DanielR likes this.
  11. Hexic

    Hexic TS Addict Posts: 271   +127

  12. drjekelmrhyde

    drjekelmrhyde TS Booster Posts: 185   +43

    That's pretty stupid. I had a white friend who use to steal tons of crap from stores because the staff were too focused on me and our other black friend. We even started making it a thing. Me and the black friend would go in first , walk around and buy something cheap, then our white friend would come in and hit the store for at least 2 pints of hard liquor.
    /We were dumb *** teens.
  13. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,293   +660

    Dumb?? Heck that was darn near *genius*.

    Are there still people being raised in racist homes and inheriting those worldviews? Certainly, but their few and far between in most of the western world. Racist attitudes, from what I've seen, usually come from people ONLY having negative experiences with another human sub-species. Its very common when kids who grew up with little diversity in their communities go to college. Its often their first serious exposure to other races and maybe even political or personal philosophies that differ from what was common where they lived. Unfortunately, the worst examples of each race always stand out because their usually loud, disruptive and in some kind of trouble - the regular types are minding their own business. Thus the kid from the small racially homogeneous town or inner city neighborhood only ends up having bad memories of the sub-species in question because those malcontents left the strongest first impression. The impact is even deeper if that person grew up around racial bigotry - his bad experiences only reinforce his misconceptions.

    All that having been said, many stereotypical behaviors attributed to different races and cultures are absolutely real. Who would honestly say that basketball isn't the most popular sport for younger African-Americans? Who would honestly try to say there's a huge number of Jewish NASCAR fans? Not every stereotype is false, and the truth is never racist.

    Right now the Obama administration is trying to control the racial distribution of families in public housing. In short, they want more blacks and Hispanics moving into white neighborhoods. However, they are not forcing HUD apartments in black communities to accept poor white people. This is another factor that creates racism - governments trying to engineer diversity - particularity when that diversity is unequal. When you force communities to accept poor people of different races or cultures you are maximizing the chance for racism to take root and grow. Inevitably some of those lower class newcomers will get involved in street crime. Instead of disowning the criminals among them the minority will choose racial solidarity, and suddenly the battle lines are drawn. The race hustlers who profit from social unrest do all they can to insure this always happens...and thus race relations in the US and many other places never improve.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2015
    dms96960 likes this.
  14. risc32

    risc32 TS Booster Posts: 186   +75

    Note to self. Scratch Australia off my list of places I'd perhaps care to live.
    . The principal took the boys back to the store for an apology, oh my lord that's just to funny! Little whiny punks playing even dumber adults. This stuff would nearly have me pissing myself with laughter but for the fact that I need a non crazy place to live myself....
  15. Lionvibez

    Lionvibez TS Evangelist Posts: 1,078   +330

    Lol I thought crap like this only happens in the US..
  16. Adhmuz

    Adhmuz TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,612   +492

    Hey, if anything the store employees were doing these teens a favor and steering them away from future Apple products.

    Seriously, why is Apple worried about theft in the first place, everything is locked to the tables, they have cameras everywhere, security guards, ect. Don't forget the merchandise in the store is of almost no value to apple in the first place, considering the mark up they could more than afford to let some teens, who might I add do not look like they're going to steal anything in those spiffy sweater vests. And finally, INSURANCE will cover whatever is stolen in a heart beat.
  17. Normally, stores use the "Nice" method, where they constantly ask you for their assistance with the item or service until you feel the urgency make a commitment or mildly irritated enough to leave.
  18. Snowden

    Snowden TS Member Posts: 68   +31

    'Racial profiling' is a complex issue and is sometime inappropriate, but does not necessarily indicate 'racism'.

    To put this story in perspective, Melbourne has had some very significant problems with migrants from the Sudan, ranging from very serious repeat drink driving offences (one resulted in a guy driving into a childcare centre and resulting in a child losing his legs) to gangs roaming Dandenong at night randomly bashing people (the Police advise people to avoid groups of black youths at any time of day) to brazen store theft. On the same day this story broke, so did this one: (offenders image at the bottom of article).

    Now, I do not encourage racism nor do I think racial profiling is good or effective overall. However, it ends up being inevitable when migrants from the Sudan conduct so much crime and violence within a few years of arriving in Australia. If statistics leaned toward another group of people such as the Irish or Polish for example, then it would be them being profiled instead and historically it has been other groups of migrants with high crime statistics. In other words, skin colour has little to do with categorising a group of people as 'high-risk offenders' when the statistics reveal facts.

    And yes, white people commit far more crimes in Australia than migrants, because there are more of them. Paedophiles for example seem to be mostly white as the current Commission into Child Abuse has shown.

    My point is that it is typical and shallow to cry racism every time a migrant of any origin person is considered a potential offender. White school children are often ejected from Apple stores and ALWAYS told to leave their bags outside. Is that racist? No. Is it profiling? Yes.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  19. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,368   +2,156

    This video has no context to it at all. For all I know, they were acting shady as a bunch of fedora-wearing trench coats before being asked to leave.

    The smart play, assuming they were simply profiled, is to fire off this exact script at the dude, if for nothing else than entertainment:

    Rep: You have to leave our store.

    Response: What did I do?

    Rep: We're just not comfortable with you here.

    Response: Interesting.

    Rep: Please leave.

    Response: This sounds to me like profiling. I smell a lawsuit.

    Rep: ...excuse me?

    Response: [recite applicable legal code]

    Fight fire with nukes, I say.

    As for racial profiling... When a certain segment of the population commits crimes at a higher rate, that group should be profiled accordingly. Technically this is illegal, because feelz. But no one said lawmakers were intelligent.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  20. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    Which begs the question from a politically correct stand point of why the title has "black students". If the article itself was trying to remain neutral, the race color never would have been used in the title.
  21. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,597   +369

    It's rare but the Abbott Govt (I'd call him far right wing) seened to thrive on fostering immigrant and terrorist hysteria. Ppl usually are a lot more laid back than that here.
  22. stewi0001

    stewi0001 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,132   +478

    you've obviously haven't been around the globe much ;P try the middle-east or Africa, both of them have much more discrimination than the US.
  23. fimbles

    fimbles TS Evangelist Posts: 1,154   +197

    Here in the UK I have seen several signs targeting school children, Such as only 2 being allowed in the shop at once in case they stuff the entire stock in to their satchels.

    Maybe thats it? Cant honestly see it being a race thing.
  24. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Maniac Posts: 929   +238

    To follow-up, later that same employee said off-record,
    There is a difference between wanting and forcing. Sounds like a case of hyper-Rush-ism to me.
  25. Jibberish18

    Jibberish18 TS Guru Posts: 509   +35

    Honestly? It's a tiny clip. We don't know what happened before that. We don't know anything for that matter. Of course at first it makes you want to cry foul but there could have been very good reason for them kicking them out. Would this have gained attention had the group not been black? Now I'm not daft I realize that blacks face gender issues that whites do not in much of the world so that's not fair to say, Australia too with the Aboriginal discrimination, but still it can't all be wrong all the time. It's a touchy subject and you can't really comment until you know the entire story. I've always said to people something, stereotypes exist because stereotypes exist. Take that as you will.

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