Watch: Woman Whose Pro-Trump Rant Inside Lakeview Michael's Went Viral Speaks Out
By Rachel Cromidas in News on Jan 4, 2017 6:00AM
The woman whose pro-Trump tirade at a Lakeview Michael's last fall went viral—and led many to say that she is a racist prone to public outbursts—has more to say. But this time, it's planned: Jennifer Boyle sat down with NBC's Ash-har Quraishi for an exclusive interview about her outbursts, and denied having racist thoughts or actions.
Boyle, 29, of Lakeview, insisted that the rant, directed toward a black woman who works as a Michael's store clerk, was about "poor customer service," not race or politics. She also said she's received death threats and "ugly" harassment in the wake of the video receiving millions of views online.
In the original clip, the woman is seen shouting, taunting and swearing at numerous people, including what appears to be the Michael's store manager. According to Chicagoan Jessie Grady—the bystander who filmed the video and shared it online—the woman began shouting after a black employee asked her if she wanted to purchase a bag to place her larger items in:
“Why don’t you shut your face?” the woman is heard shouting at the beginning of the video. “And I voted for Trump, so there. You gonna kick me out because of that? And look who won!”
As the video continues, the woman repeatedly yells that she is being discriminated against, confronts Grady as she films, accuses Grady's child of stealing, and refers to Michaels employees as "animals."
“This wasn’t about race, this was not about political views, this was about very poor customer service and being told to leave without warning,” Boyle said. Boyle told NBC she regrets that she did not simply leave the store, rather than have a conflict. But, she said, "fight or flight kicked in and I felt that I needed to defend myself."
"I do not believe that I have an issue dealing with my anger," she also said in the interview, and, “There’s not one bone in my body that’s racist or homophobic.”
NBC has published at least six clips from the interview with Boyle. You can watch them below and on their website. The video at the bottom also includes Boyle's attorney, who says they will report harassment against her to the police and take legal action. He also argued that Boyle has wrongly become a "symbol" of President-elect Donald Trump to people who don't like him, and that people should keep her humanity in mind.