Gay Couple Kicked Out of Texas Restaurant

Here’s a story that serves as a perfect reminder of what the Christian right is currently fighting for, the “right” to refuse to serve gay people in their businesses because of their “religious freedom.” A gay couple was tossed out of a Texas restaurant after being called bigoted slurs.

Collin Dewberry and Kelly Williams said they had finished eating breakfast and paid for their meals Tuesday morning at Big Earl’s Bait House and Galey Café when a waitress used a homophobic slur and asked them never to return.

“We don’t serve fags here,” the waitress told the men, and then recited a house rule. “Here at Big Earl’s we like for men to act like men and for ladies to act like ladies, so we want you to never return.”

Dewberry said the waitress said the phrase so nonchalantly that it sounded as if she was reading it from a piece of paper – which she was, in a way.

The phrase is written on a piece of paper displayed on the front door of the Pittsburg restaurant, and its owner said the pair violated the rule by touching legs as they ate their meal.

“I didn’t go over there to inspect to see what he was rubbing,” said restaurant owner Earl Cheney. “That’s just not appropriate in a family restaurant that has a sign on the front door that we just don’t do that here.”

I don’t care whether you think Jesus tells you to discriminate (he doesn’t, by the way, and never did, if the Bible is to be believed). This is wrong and it should be illegal everywhere.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • caseloweraz

    Cheney!

    (But I suppose there’s no relation…)

  • daved
  • caseloweraz

    FWIW Pittsburg is east of Dallas, but not on the coast. It’s near the Louisiana line, surrounded by lakes.

  • Ellie

    You’ll note that they didn’t “throw them out” until after they had ordered, eaten and most importantly, paid. I guess money was more important than any principles for the moment, at least.

  • D. C. Sessions

    I don’t care whether you think Jesus tells you to discriminate (he doesn’t, by the way, and never did, if the Bible is to be believed).

    That looks like Modus’ cue.

  • John Pieret

    Big Earl’s Bait House and Galey Café

    First of all, why would anyone eat at a place with that name?

    OK, maybe I’m just showing my northeastern bias against eating bait …

    But to their credit, the bigots put up a sign:

    Welcome to BIG EARL’S

    Where MEN act like MEN

    WOMEN act like LADIES

    NO SAGGY PANTS

    We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.

    Somehow the owner interpreted that as:

    “That a man’s supposed to stand up and be a leader. He’s not supposed to be a woman. He’s not supposed to come in here in a dress.”

    Except the customers weren’t dressed in dresses. Supposedly, the pair violated the rule by touching legs as they ate their meal. How unmanly!

    Cheney said his daughter was the waitress who used the slur during the encounter.

    “She’s a young lady, didn’t know what else to say, and they just kept on and she finally said we just don’t like fags,” he said.

    Cheney said surveillance video, which he declined to share, shows the men badgering his daughter, and he said she became flustered.

    “She didn’t know what else to say,” he said. “She was frustrated and flustered, you know, and they were going out just laughing and carrying on.”

    Yeah, daughter of bigot doesn’t know what else to say after a lifetime of bigotry! There’s a surprise!

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    D. C. Sessions “That looks like Modus’ cue.”

    Tah da!(*1)

     

    *1. Note: I haven’t read this page. Something about gayhomos, probably. Ed’s a shill for Big Homo. Sure, Big Homo’s line of heat-and-serve lunches and dinners are delicious straight out of the microwave, just like HomoMom used to make, but there’s no good reason for someone to sell out and pitch their tasty and nutritious meals, with no added artificial flavoring or preservatives, no matter how good a value they are.(*2)

    *2. Big Homo Inc, A (Gay) Family of Companies.

  • howardhershey

    Hmmm. As I recall ma Babble, Jesus even had a woman some think had a past as a whore join his group of followers. She was taken seriously despite also being a (fallen?) woman. In addition, he had,as a disciple, Matthew, who was a tax collector (a job some right-wingers of today would place as a step below whore; at the time of Jesus, they were often regarded as criminals). OTOH, the several manly men fishermen would probably fit right in at the bait shop.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    This:

    “This place is an awesome family oriented business that serves some of the best freshly fried catfish and chicken fried steak anywhere. Big Earl is a very friendly god fearing man that treats all his regular customers very well. If you want to act like a heathen you probably should go elsewhere. Big Earl won’t mind at all. Its a free country, he is free to decline your business and you are free to not patronize his business.But Big Earl will mind if you place a FAKE one star review on yelp. You will be “outed” so to speak and things won’t go well for you. Check out what “Hadeed Carpets” of the Washington, DC area did. If I sound like a lawyer that is not a coincidence. And I am a damned good one. You have been warned.”

    From the link @2; it makes me wonder if Larry Klayman has relatives in Pittsburgh, TX.

  • http://dontlinkmebro F [i’m not here, i’m gone]

    *barf*

  • Al Dente

    If I sound like a lawyer that is not a coincidence. And I am a damned good one.

    Dude, you don’t sound like a lawyer. You sound like a guy pretending to be a lawyer. And a damned bad one.

  • http://Reallyawakeguy.blogspot.com somnus

    “Fake” one-star review? Got news for ya: service is a legitimate part of reviewing a restaurant. If the service is openly bigoted and hostile, that is a legitimate reason to rate the experience poorly.

  • caseloweraz

    I see Jimmy J (quoted in #9) was careless; he forgot to capitalize the name of his deity. Perhaps he was feeling “frustrated and flustered.” If his deity really was as jealous as the scriptures say, Jimmy J might soon have a bad day.

    Hey course, his deity can’t be jealous, because he doesn’t exist.

    BTW: I watched Mississippi Burning last night for the first time. A very powerful film, and this situation reminds me of it.

  • http://atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine

    That’s just not appropriate in a family restaurant

    I take it they also enforce some rule prohibiting any signs of affection between men and women, such as holding hands. Otherwise, I’m not sure what’s “family inappropriate” about homosexuality.

  • flatlander100

    Ed: illegal why? They were served their meal, ate it, paid… and then were called fags and asked not to comeback. What law do you think the owner broke? Waitress/owner was ignorant, vulgar, bigoted etc. certainly, but none of that’s illegal. Nor should it be. Had the men been refused service, you’d have a point. But they weren’t. Curious what you think the owner’s conduct should be made illegal? How? What would your proposed law say?

  • eric

    So, he considers two men touching knees to be unacceptably gay…but I bet he watches football.

  • http://atheist-faq.com Jasper of Maine

    #15

    Had the men been refused service, you’d have a point.

    “We don’t serve fags here,” the waitress told the men

    … and asked not to comeback.

    That’s a refusal of service, incidentally… unless by “asked” it they meant a non-binding request that can be ignored.

  • Alex

    If I had to choose where to dine out with my family in that town, I would deem any restaurant where the staff treats customers like completely unsuitable. After all, I wouldn’t want my children to witness such immoral behavior. Two guys touching with their knees on the other hand, really not a problem.

  • Alex

    -> “where the staff treats customers like this completely unsuitable”

  • matty1

    I take it they also enforce some rule prohibiting any signs of affection between men and women, such as holding hands.

    I wouldn’t even consider knees touching a sign of affection, I’d probably just assume their legs were longer than whoever designed the table. While physical contact can be physical communication it can also be incidental. I’m guessing they don’t use much public transport in Texas, or if they do it is never crowded, because anyone whose been a commuter bus or train in a lot of places would be used to the idea of their legs or shoulders occasionally touching even total strangers without it being a big deal.

  • Alex

    I’m guessing they don’t use much public transport in Texas,

    Public transport is for losers and mexicans.

  • matty1

    Yeah well Texicans would be Mexicans if they hadn’t rebelled when Mexico city banned slavery (ducks).

  • matty1

    Oooh even better, on looking it up it seems another issue that triggered the Texan revolt was attempts to limit immigration.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    matty1:

    How dare you!?

    The White KKKristian Founding Fathers of Texas were tryin’ to bring up the area by importin’ fine WHITE European stock into the genetically inferior local populace.

    And before you ask; YES, the were bringin’ teh blacks but only as PROPERTY and they would’ve controlled their breedin’ so’s not to let things get outta hand. Why do you hate MurKKKa?

  • jimmyfromchicago

    NO SAGGY PANTS

    That’s not code for anything.

  • Anri

    From the OP:

    I don’t care whether you think Jesus tells you to discriminate (he doesn’t, by the way, and never did, if the Bible is to be believed). This is wrong and it should be illegal everywhere.

    I’m having trouble finding it, but didn’t Jesus (supposedly) say he was here not to overthrow the old laws, but to fulfill them? That just because he showed up, they hadn’t changed? I seem to recall a few of them were just a wee bit harsh on (male) same-sex couples…

    I dunno, maybe I’m wrong.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    …what the Christian right is currently fighting for, the “right” to refuse to serve gay people in their businesses because of their “religious freedom.”

    You know who else is fighting for that “right?” Libertarians, who consistently (and mindlessly) oppose any and all government efforts to restrict such discriminatory behavior by private enterprises. Funny how you only pretend to notice one group of backward bigoted wingnuts and not another. Bit of a blind spot there?

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Yes, Anri, you are wrong. Jesus didn’t promise to fulfill any particular human law, secular or religious; he promised to fulfill “THE law,” and the context of that Bible passage (coming after a lot of stuff about which actions get rewarded by which results) clearly shows he meant God’s plan for how the Universe in general is meant to work.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    jimmyfromchicago: Yes, that’s almost surely a code for black people — but in fairness, there’s a shitload of pushback against that particular style of “dress” from within the black community as well. “SAGGIN spelled backwards is N*GG*S!” is a slogan I saw at Odunde (an African new-year celebration), a mostly-back event in Philadelphia (minus that bit of self-censorship of course).

  • martinc

    Raging Bee @29:

    a mostly-back event in Philadelphia

    If it was mostly back, sagging pants wouldn’t worry me … but it isn’t ‘back’.

  • matty1

    @28 I’m not convinced, while the exact phrasing depends on the translation you use but the phrase in Matthew 5:17 is The Law and The Prophets.

    I think we can assume the prophets referred to were those of ancient Israel. So this is at least partly a reference to the old testament. In that context The Law referring to the first five books (a usage still common among Christians and a widely accepted translation of the Jewish Torah) makes more sense.

    Also note that the reference to fulfilling The Law and The Prophets comes directly after “think not that I have come to abolish The Law and The Prophets”. Why would anyone think Jesus came to abolish God’s plan for the universe?

    If however we picture the New Testament being written against the backdrop of a debate on whether Christians are bound by Jewish law, as implied by a lot of stuff from Paul, then it makes sense a writer might put into Jesus’ mouth a reassurance to Jewish Christians that Torah was not being done away with.