@jackielabonita Please be nice #meangirls #meangirlvibes ♬ The Loser – Verzache
Two women who had been condemned and derided on the Internet for making fun of a TikToker at a Houston Astros game have issued an apology.
The situation began Saturday, when TikTok user Jackie La Bonita posted a video of herself at Minute Maid Park. In the video, which now has more than 43 million views, La Bonita was seen attempting to pose and take videos of herself while two women behind her made faces, gave La Bonita the middle finger and loudly laughed at her.
A caption on the video says, “Watch my confidence disappear after these random girls make fun of me for taking pics.”
Over the weekend, the video made its way to other social media platforms, sparking outrage from people across the globe. Twitter users began calling the pair the “Astros Mean Girls,” an apparent reference to the 2004 movie “Mean Girls.” Rapper Cardi B, who has almost 30 million followers on Twitter, commented on the video, saying she would have, “put that ring to use,” referring to La Bonita’s Houston Astros championship ring.
Others commenting online identified the two women as Litzareli Madrigal and Alondra Poullet. However they incorrectly identified Madrigal as an employee of J. Beard Real Estate in The Woodlands — and began targeting the business by leaving negative reviews and comments about it for supposedly employing her.
Poullet posted a video from her social media account on Tuesday addressing the situation. It has since been removed but has been reposted several times on different platforms. The video shows Madrigal and Poullet defending their actions, saying they felt uncomfortable being filmed. They said Madrigal pointing her middle finger toward the camera was inappropriate.
“I know there are going to be people out there who are not going to believe this, but were not bullying her,” Poullet said in the video.
The pair also said that millions of people contacting their families and leaking their personal information is scary.
“I think it’s ridiculous how people are coming up with companies that Liz never worked at, at all,” Poullet continued. “it was not our intention for her to feel like she wanted to cry or for her to feel like we were messing with her self confidence.”
Jeff Beard, the owner of J. Beard Real Estate, told the Chronicle the situation is ironic: People have been attacking his business online because they’re angry La Bonita was attacked online.
Beard also stood up for his employees and family members who have been unfairly targeted, as his business has received thousands of emails and one-star reviews from people all over the world.
“For them to get lumped into this is frustrating,” Beard said. “I’m more concerned about everyone’s physical and mental well-being, that they don’t let the negativity and hate get to them.”
Beard denies Madrigal has ever worked for J. Beard Real Estate — a fact Madrigal also confirmed in subsequent social media posts.
“What’s interesting or entertaining for some people may be detrimental to others,” Beard said.
La Bonita turned off the comments on her original video and had not publicly commented on the situation as of Wednesday morning.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly identified a video that pretended to be an apology letter written by Madrigal. This story has been updated to reflect Madrigal and Poullet’s actual video.
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