Antonio and Felinzay were just doing their job when a racist customer ran out of his house and began threatening them.
The economy may have shut down bar essential services, but racism is still running wild and free. On May 20, two black FedEx employees, Antonio and Felinzay, were delivering packages in Leesburg, Georgia, when they were confronted by a rude - and more importantly, racist - customer. After hurling threats and curses, the customer warned that he would call the police on the FedEx employees. One of the employees recorded part of the exchange. When the delivery company heard about the incident, instead of confronting the customer, they decided to fire the employees though they did no wrong. A GoFundMe has since been set up to help them during the ongoing pandemic.
The interaction went viral after one of the employees posted a video recording of it to Twitter. In the clip, one of the deliverymen can be seen talking to the white man (who is also recording the exchange through a phone held in his right hand). The employee says, "You didn't have to come out there cussing [at] me like that, like I'm some child. I ain't no little boy... I can wait till the police come." Eventually, the pair drive off. When asked where they're going, the same man responds, "Man, I ain't gonna waste my time with you. You got my information. They'll find me." After the video was posted online, FedEx demanded that they take the video down.
Update FedEx called and told me to take down this video and fired both of us Today .. I’m reposting this video because people like him doesn’t matter white or any race should never disrespect essential workers putting their lives in jeopardy especially with this covid-19 pic.twitter.com/Fw0S5gNRso— antonio (@Toniob38) May 20, 2020
The duo explained the incident via their GoFundMe. "All we did was deliver his package, he was in the house at the time," they share. "It was a quick stop and as soon as we were leaving, he ran out [of] his house cursing and threatening us. While we were looking confused, we just apologized for being [in] his yard but he [kept] going on. Then [he] kept saying he would whoop our black *sses and told his wife to call the cops. That’s when he pulled out his phone playing victim and that's when I recorded." Unfortunately, this was not the first time the pair had stood witness to racism while on the job. They explain, " [I don't know] what the police did but [we] posted this video because we go through racism every day on that route in Leesburg... He was the first one to actually come up and actually threaten us."
The video has, to no surprise, stirred quite the controversy online. Many social media users are shocked that FedEx would choose to fire their employees rather than tell their customers to be respectful of those risking their lives in order to fulfill essential services. Antonio stated in a later tweet, "I really appreciate the job opportunity I had with FedEx. No hard feelings but I pray I can get back on my feet because I have a daughter now." Everything Georgia, a local group, thus started the GoFundMe in order to help Antonio and Felinzay out. So far, they have received over $50,000 of their $60,000 goal. The donations will be split 50-50 between the two and will be delivered immediately. FedEx is yet to respond to the situation. To make a donation, you can visit the fundraiser here.
@FedEx You expect your employees to take racism and like it, all so they can sell their souls for a paycheck? Time to take a really good look as to who I’m giving my money to.— Angie 🏳️🌈 (@justabot411) May 20, 2020