On Monday, Fox News host Glenn Beck criticized unemployed activists who protested on Wall Street to demand an extension of unemployment benefits beyond the 99 weeks available in some states, specifically calling out one Connie Kaplan.
"Ninety-niner Connie Kaplan asked, 'Are you going to tell us, Mr. President and Congress, that our lives are not worth saving?'" Beck said. "Connie, here's an idea. I'll save your life. Don't spend your remaining money on travel to get to a protest. Go out and get a job. You may not want the job. Work at McDonald's. Work two jobs."
Kaplan told HuffPost she was "appalled" by Beck's suggestion that she'd rather not work -- before the economic collapse, she said, she did work two jobs in Florida. "I was a customer service warranty specialist for a company that manufacturers luxury coaches -- tour buses, fancy ones," she said, adding that she also worked as a real estate agent. After losing the customer service job, she moved from Florida to New York to stay with her daughter.
She said she spent $2.25 on subway fare to get to the protest and is constantly looking for a job. "I just want an honest day's work... I've tried everything you can imagine," she said. As for Beck's suggestion that his viewers might be ashamed to call 99ers American, Kaplan said, "You couldn't get more American than me. I'm the daughter of an immigrant and I grew up in Brooklyn."
There's plenty of competition for golden arches gigs, by the way. Several thousand people showed up at McDonald's "hiring day" events in California and Nevada this week. The restaurant chain is filling 1,000 jobs at 600 stores.
"We think that working at McDonald's is a great job because you learn a lot of life skills that you can carry forward either within the company or in other careers," said a spokeswoman.