The Lowdown on the UConn Mac and Cheese Temper Tantrum Student

The University of Connecticut student who faces charges of breach of peace and criminal trespass after attacking a cafeteria employee in a drunken tantrum over macaroni and cheese has apologized in newly posted YouTube video  (seen above) prior to today’s court appearance.

In the recently released video, Luke Gatti admits to being drunk when he was captured on video about a week ago lashing out at UConn Storrs campus employees. In the video the made the internet rounds last week, an employee refuses to sell the student macaroni and cheese because the student was reportedly carrying an open alcohol container. In the new video, Gatti admits to being ‘intoxicated’ and says no one deserves to be treated the way he treated cafeteria employees. He also admits to having “issues” that he is working on.

The mea culpa video has prompted a slew of YouTube viewer responses. Some people thought Gatti was contrite. Many questioned his apology’s sincerity. Some intimated he was attempting to capitalize on his infamy in an online effort to become famous.

If he is, it won’t be the first time someone has parlayed a compromising, humiliating video into an opportunity that could make them famous — or rich. Arguably the best (or worst) example is reality star Kim Kardashian. Most of America and the world had never heard of her prior to the release of a sex tape video in which she appeared with R-and-B singer, Ray J.

Kardashian managed to parlay the infamy she gained from that video into starring in a reality tv show, endorsement deals and magazine covers, including Vogue. She is now at the center of a multi-million dollar empire. Barely a day goes by without an appearance of Kim Kardashian in magazines and newspapers, on the Internet or on television.

Even if Mr. Gatti fails to enter into the public’s consciousness the way Miss Kardashian has, he may benefit in another way: He may offer video as evidence of his sorrow when he appears in court. In his mind, this may prompt sympathy and a lesser punishment. If published reports are correct, this most recent incident is not the first time, Mr. Gatti has experienced trouble with the law. According to published reports, Mr. Gatti was arrested twice in 2014 on disorderly conduct charges while he was a student at the University of Massachusetts.

I think Mr. Gatti has made a good first step towards making amends for his despicable actions. Whatever the outcome of Mr. Gatti’s court appearance and most recent video, I think there are other actions the UConn student can and should take to prove he is sorry for his actions: He should meet individually with those campus employees he berated and offer a face-to-face apology. He should have to work in the cafeteria for a semester and donate his earnings to charity. He should also enter a counseling or addiction program to address his drinking issues.

As the adage goes, action speak louder than words. I would like to hear fewer words and see more action from Mr. Gatti. Let’s see how it all plays out.

That’s the Lowdown!


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