It’s a sad little story of arrogance, intransigence, greed and, possibly, racism. In 1992, Jin Nam Chung, Ki Chung and their son, Soo Chung, moved from their native South Korea to the U.S., intending to start a new life and experience the power of the “American Dream”.
At first, all went well. The family opened their own dry cleaning business, which thrived. Then, along came Roy L. Pearson Jr with a number of suits to be altered. When Mister Pearson returned next day to collect his clothes, a pair of trousers was missing.
Mister Pearson isn’t a nobody. Mister Pearson is an African-American working as an administrative law judge in Washington, D.C. He used his knowledge of Washington’s strict consumer protection laws to attempt what can only be described as “legal extortion”. Pearson’s trousers were recovered within a week, but he refused to accept them, saying they weren’t his – despite being the right size and with his cleaning ticket attached – and demanded recompense to the tune of $15,000. The Chungs offered first $3,000, then $4,600, and finally $12,000, but Pearson refused them all.
Now, having put the Chung’s through hell for five years, he is suing them for $67,000,000.
Why that figure, can be revealed by reading the full story HERE if you missed it on the BBC World News this morning. Judge Roy L Pearson Jnr has certainly achieved world-wide infamy.
The real question to be asked is, why? Why has this man hounded a family for five years over something as innocuous as a pair of trousers?
Obviously, this has nothing to do with mislaid clothing. This is one man exercising his own supposed superiority, arrogance, greed and racism over those in a weaker position than himself.
This story is interesting because hidden within it is an analogy perhaps not immediately obvious. It may become clearer, however, if I suggest that the Chungs, despite their ruined lives, bitter frustrations, and disillusion with the “American Dream”, probably won’t resort to attacking the Manhattan skyline.
Filed under: Unfair play