Lesbian Marine Waitress Lied About Tip Story

Recently, a waitress and former Marine drew an outpouring of sympathy after claiming a religious couple left a message insulting her lifestyle instead of a tip.

Recently, a waitress and former Marine drew an outpouring of sympathy after claiming a religious couple left a message insulting her lifestyle instead of a tip. Now, as the late Paul Harvey would have said, for the rest of the story . . . .

Good Morning America (“Some Donations in Anti-Gay Tipping Scandal Refunded Via Paypal“):

At least three duped donors who gave money to a waitress and former Marine who claimed a family left her a homophobic note instead of a tip have had their donations refunded via PayPal, according to the founder of the web site that had first publicized the story and posts on the site.

Dayna Morales, a waitress at Gallop Asian Bistro, N.J., made national headlines and received an outpouring of public support and at least $3,000 in donations after she claimed a family stiffed her and instead left her a note on the receipt reading, “Sorry, I cannot tip because I do not agree with your lifestyle and the way you live your life.”

But after an unidentified couple came forward days later with a customer receipt and bank statement to prove that they had in fact left Dayna Morales an $18 tip on top of the $93.55 check, former friends of Morales also came forward claiming she was a compulsive liar.

Morales, 22, did not contact media directly with her story, but it soon went viral after it was picked up by a gay advocacy website, Have a Gay Day, which posted it on its Facebook wall.

“I am THOROUGHLY offended mad pissed off and hurt that THIS is what her kids will grow up learning and that I served in the Marines to keep ignorant people like them free,” Morales posted, along with a picture of the receipt to Have a Gay Day on Nov. 13. “Sorry lady but I don’t agree with YOUR lifestyle and the way you’re raising your kids but you didn’t see me throwing that in your face and giving you sh–y service. Keep your damn mouth shut and pray we never cross paths again.”

The Founder of the Ohio-based website confirmed on Friday he had received messages from at least three people saying they had received their donations back.

“It has been confirmed that refunds have been issued to people that gave to Dayna Morales and the story we posted last month that she sent about the note on the receipt where she was not tipped,” Have a Gay Day founder Michael Knote wrote on the Facebook page. “We’re not sure who is exactly issuing the refunds but we have had 4 different people send us info that they received paypal refunds this morning.”

Knote, 30, told ABC News he feels betrayed by the whole episode, and a “responsibility to find the truth” because it was his site that initially posted Morales’ story. He said the last time he spoke to Morales was a few days after the media had picked up the story, but he hasn’t been able to reach her since then because she has since taken down her Facebook page.

The story wasn’t true but it’s certainly truthy. Because lots of people go through the trouble of explaining why they’re not leaving a tip and deserve to be outed on Social Media for it.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Mark Ivey says:

    Amateur grifter´s and their scams…… :))

  2. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    It’s rapidly getting to the point where one can almost safely assume that “hate crimes” like these are hoaxes. I recall quite a few recently where the victim was the perpetrator, and don’t recall the last genuine one.

  3. Davebostew says:

    The story wasn’t true but it’s certainly truthy. Because lots of people go through the trouble of explaining why they’re not leaving a tip and deserve to be outed on Social Media for it.

    I’d be curious to know what you based this statement on James. I waited thousands of tables in my younger days. And I never ran across such a situation. I do know of customers who left notes explaining why they didn’t tip. But in every case it was because of lousy service.

  4. John Peabody says:

    Things that ‘go viral’ have rarely been vetted by standard reporting practices. This was a feature of the old order…if you knew a media source that had a reputation of telling the truth, you had confidence in its stories. Now, every news aggregator just links and throws things into the ether.

  5. CSK says:

    Apart from any other consideration, who would be idiotic enough to leave such a note on a signed credit card slip?

  6. Brett says:

    I can see why that one went viral. It fits with the cultural stereotype that evangelical Christians are both cheapskates when it comes to tipping, and incredibly self-righteous. I’ve heard stories from former servers about people who left fake dollar-looking things that were actually mini-pamphlets for religion instead of tips.

  7. RGardner says:

    I remember a bartender loudly saying to me as i was leaving, “thanks big tipper” with a bad tone at a bar in Alexandria VA about 10 years ago. I replied, “maybe you can use it for some glasses.” He saw only a couple of coins, not realizing they were dollar coins (gold ones, not Susan B’s) when he made his flip remark. He looked again, and said “oh, sorry.” ($2 tip on a $8-10 tab – and they came as change from Post Office stamp vending machines then – Buy $8 in stamps with a $20, get $12x$1 coins back.)

  8. Just Me says:

    With this hoax I have always wondered how the accused non tippers would know anything about her lifestyle.

    I don’t make it a practice to ask my waiter/waitress who they are sexually attracted to and I am pretty sure most are like me in this regard.

    I don’t even understand why people create the fake hate crimes-is it for hopes of donations, 15 minutes of fame, or just the desire to he the center of some drama.

  9. Rob in CT says:

    Once again, we see the result of media orgs not bothering to do any research. “Going viral” is cool. Clicks are clicks, man! As has been said “too good to check” is the order of the day.

    I think we’ve returned to an earlier (and perhaps more “normal”) era. It used to be that newspapers in this country printed all sorts of nonsense, facts be damned. This was normal behavior. It may be that it was only abnormal for a few decades in the mid-to-late 20th century. As with some other things, the 19th century is looking more and more recognizable.

  10. CSK says:

    @Just Me:

    In this case, it appears to be all three motives. The woman apparently has a history of inventing dramatic stories about herself: that she was raped by her father, who killed the baby she bore; that she had brain cancer; that she was the sole survivor of an attack in Afghanistan.

    And no, I do not know how any restaurant patron would know or care that she was gay unless she announced the fact to them. And even then, I find it impossible to believe they’d write a gay slur on a signed credit card receipt.