The gay owner of an LGBT-friendly cafe ejects customers after being “offended” by anti-abortion poster
The incident, which according to Facebook took place last week, involved the owner of Bedlam Coffee and members of the group Abolish Human Abortion who videoed the interaction and posted it online.
The video uploaded by the group begins with cafe owner Ben Borgman holding what appears to be a poster in his hands and telling members: “Well, I’m gay. You have to leave.”
“So, are you denying us service?” Asks the person filming. “I am, yeah”, replies Borgman.
“This is offensive to me [pointing to the poster], I own the place. I have a right to be offended.”
The Mirror online reported that Borgman “kicked a group of Christians out of his coffee shop because he was ‘offended’ by their leaflets calling for the abolition of abortion.”
What the article fails to mention however, is that the leaflet depicts two rainbow coloured hands covered in blood with what has been described as a “dead baby” underneath. The poster appears to refer to LGBT people, often associated with rainbow colours.
After the confrontation, Abolish Human Abortion members then begin to collectively explain that the leaflet had come from outside the cafe to which Borgman responds:
“Shut up, shut up. There’s nothing else you can say. This is you.”
“So we’re not welcome here?” The group ask.
“I do not want these people [gesturing to the poster] in my … I find this extremely offensive.”
The exchange continues, when Borgman asks: “Can you tolerate my presence?”
“We are. We’re actually in your coffee shop.”
“Really? If I go get my boyfriend right now and f*** him in the ass, right here, you’re going to tolerate that?”
“That would be your choice…”
“Are you going to tolerate it?”
[Muffled AHA voices]
“Answer my f****** question. Oh, you’re going to sit right here and fucking watch it?”
“Well, no. We don’t want to watch that.”
“Well, then I don’t have to f****** tolerate this [pointing to poster].”
The exchange continues and can be viewed in full on the group’s Facebook page.
The Facebook group for Bedlam cafe has apparently been deleted, however an event named “Seattle Bouncers Support Bedlam Coffee” has since been set up in support of the cafe. The event page, which claims the Christian group entered the cafe purposefully to “disrupt their business” reads:
“On October 1, a hate group, The Tenth Mark, entered into Bedlam Coffee with bad intent to disrupt their business and ‘invade your safe space’. Bedlam kicked them out.
“Come and join Seattle bouncers this Sunday at Bedlam Coffee in Belltown, Seattle. Show your support for their decision to stand up against hate in their business, and the groups that try to impose it in our neighbourhoods and businesses.”
Bedlam Coffee have not yet released a statement.