I think you know where I stand.
One retaurant owner chimed in, with this straddle the fence opinion:
"In my restaurant, the customer is always right," said Frank Chivas, who owns popular local restaurants like the Salt Rock Grill and Island Way Grill. "The bottom line is that if a customer is unhappy with their meal, they don't pay for it. How else can I put it?"
Having said that, Chivas hopes he won't be stampeded by customers trying to wiggle out of their bills. He believes people are reasonable enough to pay when they should.
But that's just the point. Paul was no reasonable customer. He tried to wiggle out of the bill. Is that kind of customer always right? If someone comes into your business and tries to steal from you, are they right? Are they even a customer.
And the matter of the jury who acquitted Paul. Here's another quote from the article, including the response of a legal expert:
Paul's lawyer argued to jurors that Paul, a 54-year-old retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel, didn't intend to defraud the restaurant when he went inside, so therefore was innocent.
The jury foreman said that was the primary reason jurors acquitted Paul.
If that's the case, the jury misunderstood the law, said Robert Batey, a professor at the Stetson University College of Law.
He said once Paul decided to leave the restaurant without paying, his intent was to defraud."
I like what Whisky Prajer had to say about this story. In a comment on yesterday's post, he responded to the "code" that Lieutenant Colonel Paul is said to live by:
I have a "code of honor", too: if you eat the food you pay the ****ing bill.