A Wal-Mart supervisor said Monday that a worker was wrong to refuse to sell alcohol to a 57-year-old Iowa man just because his 15-year-old daughter did not have identification.
"What happened is not consistent with the intent of our policy," said Brian Nick, director of national media relations for the chain. "The last thing you want to do is create an atmosphere where people feel they can't be in the store purchasing things with their children."Um OK. Guy goes into store to buy some stuff plus some booze with his daughter. Got it. Cashier says no way. Some how we are supposed to believe that the Wal-Mart cashier is automatically in the wrong.
Missing from both articles is some very important information that would be helpful to understanding what happened. I'd like to know is what the cashier saw. Did the daughter unload the cart? Did the daughter stand at the register like maybe she was going to pay for it? Did it look like the daughter was the one making the purchase? If it did, then the cashier was perfectly in her right to ask for ID, from the daughter. Did the man who allegedly wanted to buy the booze ask to speak to a manger about the purchase or did he storm off and drum up some bad publicity for Wal-Mart?
Here is how it works for those of you who have never sold alcohol. The person making the sale is the one responsible for the transaction, not the buyer and not the store. The person who will pay the $750 fine and/or face jail time and court costs is the cashier. The cashier won't get the backing of the stores management if s/he sells to a minor. They will get fired and face the legal music alone. If you're running the register at Wal-Mart, chances are that you don't have all that many upward career options. Maybe just maybe you need your dead end job.
With that in mind lets take another look at the situation. Girl comes in with an older guy. She seems to be a party to the transaction. They are buying booze. Because $750 is about half a months pay, and because you know the cops have been doing underage stings and because you need your thankless job, you card the girl. The girl is underage/has no ID. So you tell her you can't sell her any alcohol. The customer gets mad.
So far all of this looks just like a situation with an underage girl trying to get booze and an older guy trying to score on the girl. The clerk doesn't know the girl is your daughter. If that is what the cashier saw, and what s/he thought, then guess what, you ain't buying any booze at that register. Everything you've done looks fishy. There is zero legal penalty for not giving you the beer.
Now I know the average person working at Wal-Mart isn't going to win a Rhoads Scholarship, beauty contest, or award for most personable person on the planet. So its possible and even likely you simply had a cashier that was in a bad mood that day. The way to handle that is to ask for a manager, show them your ID and pay for the purchase. As it is, it looks more like an attention whore throwing a fit over an imagined insult.