Connect with us


Georgia state lawmaker said man made racist comments in checkout fight




A Georgia state lawmaker has been embroiled in a public battle with a man she said confronted her in an abusive verbal attack in a grocery store checkout line.

Though the man in question admitted he became aggressive in the altercation, he rejects her claim that he made a racist comment.

Georgia Rep. Erica Thomas said she encountered Eric Sparkes in a Mapleton, Georgia Publix when he told her “go back to where you came from” and called her a “lazy son of a b—h.”

Thomas initially posted on social media on July 19 to describe the incident that she said began when he became upset she had too many items in the store’s express checkout line.

In a Facebook video posted shortly after when she said the incident occurs, a sobbing Thomas, who is nine months pregnant, repeated her claim that Sparkes told her to “go back where you came from.”

“This white man comes up to me and says, ‘You lazy son of [expletive]. You need to go back where you came from,'” Thomas said in the video. “Sir, you don’t even know me. I’m not lazy. I’m nine months pregnant.”

Thomas’ video went viral on Twitter, along with the hashtag #IStandWithErica.

The feud heated up when Thomas returned to the store for an interview on the incident with Atlanta’s Channel 2 News. While she was waiting to begin the interview, she spotted Sparkes pulling up to the store.

Thomas confronted Sparkes and called him a liar for denying her account the incident.

“I’m a liar about what?” Thomas yelled at Sparkes.

“Everything that happened,” Sparkes said. “Me telling you to ‘Go back where you came from.’ Did I say that? Is it on video?”

“This woman is playing the victim for political purposes because she is a state legislator,” Sparkes told the outlet. “I’m a Democrat and will vote Democrat for the rest of my life, so to call me whatever she wants to believe. For her political purposes, make it black, white, brown, whatever. It is untrue.”

Screenshots published in a report on the incident from the conservative website The Daily Caller seem to back up Sparkes’ claims about his political stances.

Specifically, the report includes a screenshotted Facebook post from July 12 in which Sparkes seems to reference the Cuban heritage he claims in the interview with a local outlet and flatly condemn “vocal bigotry, ignorance, and racism” in a linked story about a grocery store customer allegedly threatening a Puerto Rican woman with deportation.

“For the Trumpers I grew up with this is the hidden and outright vocal bigotry, ignorance and racism I experienced at times because my grandmother did not speak English, only Spanish.” Sparkes continued, writing, “So my anger comes, FU all racists and to the ones that say you aren’t racist then you are lying to yourselves.”

In a broadcast report by the local outlet Thomas told the anchor that Sparkes said something similar to “go back where you came from.”

“I don’t want to say he said, ‘Go back to your country,’ or ‘Go back to where you came from,'” Thomas said. “But he was making those types of references is what I remember.”

It remains unclear whether Sparkes said it or not, but the phrase has been in headlines over the past week after President Donald Trump employed the same racist rhetoric to take aim at four Democratic lawmakers.

Trump tweeted on July 14 that Democratic representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar should “go back” to their “broken and crime-infested countries,” though three out of four of them were born in the US, and all four are US citizens and elected representatives.

Read more:

Taylor Swift fans are upset with presidential candidate Kamala Harris for attending a fundraising event at Scooter Braun’s mansion

Cardi B tweeted ‘Wish I was dead,’ then quickly deleted it after a weekend spent defending herself from rape and ‘blackfishing’ accusations

How 9 actors transformed themselves into murderous cult leader Charles Manson

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job