I often speak about how almost all humans (“99 percent”) have good empathetic hearts—it’s just that we’re often too busy or too afraid to exercise those hearts. Yet, when given a pathway to use our empathetic hearts, we show up in droves.

Which brings me to Michelle Crider, a thirty-three-year-old restaurant server in Fort Wayne, Indiana, who experienced bigotry by two customers. Michelle, who wears her hair short and sports various tattoos, identifies as lesbian; she’s also the parent to a seven-year-old-son.

On a recent day working at the Dash-In restaurant, Michelle served two men. She noticed that they were standoffish, but she provided her usual good service. After the men had left, she saw they did not leave a tip; instead, one had written, “I don’t tip f**gs”—a throwback phrase to a time when LGBTQ people were vilified for simply being themselves.

Following this, Michelle made a Facebook video where she shared that while the note hurt, the incident wouldn’t affect how she viewed humans in general. She noted how in 2019, people feel so free to marginalize others, believing they have a right to do so.

Still, Michelle isn’t bitter. “People have asked whether I could forgive the customer and my answer is ‘yes,’” Michelle reported to Yahoo Lifestyle. “No one is perfect. He did a crappy thing, but we still have humanity in common.”

Humans with empathic hearts have showed up for Michelle—her coworkers sent flowers and an affirming note. Moreover, a GoFundMe page was started with a goal of raising $1000 to give Michelle a “proper tip.” As of March 17, 474 people had donated $8870—now that’s a great tip!

I highly recommend watching Michelle’s short video ; she says more about human inclusivity in three minutes than I can teach in two hours. Keep watching until the end for a wonderful kicker too!