*Warning: The video includes very graphic and offensive language.*
Heather Lynn Patton was a costume designer in Hollywood before she was caught on camera screaming racial slurs at a CVS in Eagle Rock. The video starts with the woman jumping up and down scream that she “hates n—ers.”
Heather Lynn Patton was caught on camera claiming she wants to kill black people.
The video is a very disturbing moment in the growing racial tensions in the U.S. Videos like this have become an ever-increasing presence in social media. We’ve seen people verbally attacking Black people for existing and brown people being harassed about their immigration status. Heather Lynn Patton is just the latest example of this racial tension in the country.
Patton was a costume designer in Hollywood but lost that job after the video was released.
Patton is reported to have worked on two seasons the “Medium” starring Patricia Arquette. Several celebrities who have worked on projects with the racist woman have denounced her and her actions.
Patton took to Instagram to “apologize” by blaming it on her being intoxicated.
While Patton tried to blame her racist outburst on being intoxicated, people are not letting her get away with it. Twitter users have spent the last couple of days letting their opinions be known about how being drunk is not an acceptable excuse.
Some people were quick to point out that she blamed her outburst on being drunk, yet got into her car to drive home.
She basically admitted to drinking and driving after telling a store full of people that she would kill Black people if the law allowed. People are demanding justice after her outburst was spread all over social media.
Despite her apology, LAPD is investigating the threatening nature of her angry rant.
According to The Washington Post, the LAPD is investigating the woman’s outburst as a hate incident. KTLA has reported that some of her neighbors have filed restraining orders against her because of her erratic and racist behavior.
There was some history made this past Tuesday as Nury Martinezwas unanimously elected as the first Latina president in the 110-year history of the Los Angeles City Council. With a unanimous 14-0 vote, albeit Councilman Gil Cedillo was absent, the council chose to put Martinez at the head of one of the most important positions in the city.
With the historic vote, the San Fernando Valley Councilwoman will be succeeding outgoing Council President Herb Wesson, the first African-American to head the council. Martinez will become just the second woman ever elected to serve as LA city council president. Before Martinez, Councilwoman Pat Russell was the first and only woman elected back in 1983.
As the daughter of Mexican immigrants, who worked as a dishwasher and a factory worker, Martinez took time to credit and thank them during a speech on Tuesday.
Her humble beginnings growing up in Pacoima, a predominantly Latino working-class community in the San Fernando Valley, taught her the importance of hard work. Martinez saw her mom and dad work tirelessly for her family so she could have a chance at success one day. That day came on Tuesday.
“As the daughter of immigrants, as a daughter of a dishwasher and factory worker, it is incredibly, incredibly personal for me to ensure that children and families in this city become a priority for all of us, to ensure our children have a safe way to walk home every day … to ensure that our families feel safe,” Martinez said on Tuesday. “And first and foremost, to ensure that children living in motels, children that are facing homelessness, finally become a priority of our city, to ensure that we … find them permanent housing for them to grow up.”
Martinez is the product of public schools and became the first in her family to graduate from college. She began her career serving her own community as part of the City of San Fernando Council from 2003-2009 then followed that as a member of the L.A. Unified School Board from 2009-2013.
It was her upset victory in 2013 beating out well-known Democrat Cindy Montañez, a former state assemblywoman, for a seat on the city council that put her on the LA political map. Despite trailing 19 points after the primary city election, Martinez would win in the general election by 969 votes.
“To think, six years ago, I wasn’t even supposed to be here. I worked so hard and I was able to turn it around,” Martinez told the LA Times. “It’s not only an honor, but I really and truly feel blessed. And I just want to make everyone proud.”
Martinez has previously taken on issues like ending homelessness, installing rent control laws and supporting low-income families. She hopes to continue fighting for this and similar issues as president of the city council.
As part of the city council, Martinez worked on behalf of the many families in the San Fernando Valley taking on issues like housing projects, rent control, and paid family leave. These issues will continue to be part of her agenda as president of the city council as well as advocating for children and families.
“It’s monumental. She looks like the face of L.A. and she’s been elected to the highest position possible,” Jaime Regalado, professor emeritus with California State University, Los Angeles, told LAist. “Usually people consider city council president to be a stepping stone to elsewhere — and we’ll see what the future holds.”
The significant moment wasn’t lost on many who congratulated Martinez for this historic stepping stone for Latinas everywhere.
Another trailblazer, Gloria Molina, who was first Latina ever elected to the City Council, told the LA Times that Martinez has an incredible opportunity in front of her to bring real change and representation to the position.
“She has a real opportunity to bring so much change,” Molina said. “She has an opportunity to create a balance. Martinez’s election is “a very significant accomplishment, not just as a Latina but as a woman. It’s still a men’s game there.”
As the council vote was officially confirmed and the motion to elect Martinez passed, there was a loud eruption of applause from those in the council chamber. The significance of the moment wasn’t lost on Martinez who said that she will use the opportunity to highlight the best that Latinos can offer.
“I think it’s important to continue to show the rest of the country what this community is made of,” she said. “The Latinos are ready to lead and we’re very grateful to be part of this wonderful country called America.”
A worker at City Club Hotel in New York City, says a customer went on a racist tirade, eventually physically assaulting her. Linda Shell, who was at the front desk, asked to see Michell Rajacic’s ID after she began angrily demanding a room key according to a lawsuit filed with the Manhattan Supreme Court.
Video footage seemed to confirm Shell’s allegations. The video shows Rajacic calling Shell, “n—-r,” “dirty f–king raunchy skank,” “dirty f–king hood rat,” “f–king ghetto ass,” among other horrible names. Rajacic spat on, then assaulted Shell, according to the lawsuit.
Rajacic hit Shell in the face with a cell phone, the lawsuit alleges.
“I have my f—–g ID you f—–g piece of sh-t,” Rajacic yells slamming what looks like a credit card on the desk.
When Shell tells her a visa card is not a valid form of ID and refuses to give her a key until she shows her one, Rajacic gets more belligerent.
“I know, it’s just my f—–g name and it’s on the f—–g room,” Rajacic shouts in the video. “I know your f—–g ghetto ass may not know. I’m paying you for your f—–g job … actually my boyfriend’s f–king family pays you.”
After Rajacic called Shell a ton of racial slurs and claimed her boyfriend paid Shell’s salary, Rajacic began to get physical.
“After, she kept spitting. I was getting more upset because that is the lowest thing you can do to someone. I said, ‘OK, ma’am, it’s time for you to go,’” Shell told the New York Post.
Shell began to escort the disgruntled customer towards the front desk, that’s when things further escalated.
“I grabbed her arm and started leading her to the front desk. She then broke her cellphone across my face,” Shell said.
Shell is a transplant from Savannah, Georgia. The 36-year-old was shocked that something like this would happen up North, being from the Deep South she had hoped she was leaving all of that behind.
“When it comes to anything racial, you have a better chance of it happening down south than up north. I never in my life thought I would have to experience that up here. That’s why I moved here,” Shell said.
Shell is suing Rajacic for unspecified damages. The case is sealed and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office would not comment. Fortunately, Shell has already one this battle in criminal court, which may help her case in civil court.
“Defendant spit on Plaintiff and then assaulted, battered, and attacked the Plaintiff, and used physical force without cause or justification and without Plaintiff’s consent,” the lawsuit claims.
City Club Hotel appears to be siding with Rajacic for some reason.
“While Ms. Shell demonstrated noble restraint in the face of such bigotry, what she was forced to endure should not, and will not, be tolerated,” Shell’s lawyer, John Tait told the New York Post. “We will fight to ensure that Ms. Rajacic is held to account for her actions.”
When the incident happened, police arrested Rajacic and she was eventually convicted of third-degree assault. However, when Rajacic got out of jail City Club Hotel gave her a free room. Shell was so horrified, she quit her job.
“I told them I could no longer work there, because my safety is no longer important to them,” Shell said.
Joshua Barbee, the City Club Hotel general manager, told the New York Post he had no idea about the incident.
“This is the first we are learning of this litigation,” Barbee told the New York Post. “The claims being made regarding the hotel are completely incorrect. With that said, since this is pending litigation, we will have no further comment.”
Hate crimes continue to soar in the era of Trump.
The FBI reported that violent hate crimes have begun to soar, accounting for 61 percent of all hate crimes, during the Trump era. In 2018, hate crimes increased specifically for Latinx and LGBT members, however, black people are the most frequently attacked group.
“We’re seeing a leaner and meaner type of hate crime going on,” Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University San Bernardino, told NPR. “Homicides were up and crimes against persons were up and that’s an important thing to look at.”
Shell appears to be another victim of emboldened racism in the Trump administration’s era of “us against them,” rhetoric. The only silver lining to the continued trauma of people of color is the ubiquitousness of cameras that often vindicate the typically disbelieved — with various results in regard to real justice.
Maya Berry, executive director of the Arab American Institute said of the upward trend in hate crimes, “The Trump administration has advanced policies, and the president has trafficked in rhetoric, targeting the same communities that have also experienced a surge of hate violence.”
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