Restaurant Boots Gay Men After Kiss

Police cite 'right to refuse service'; others blast discrimination
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jul 10, 2009 11:31 AM CDT
El Paso.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – Five gay men were ordered to leave a Texas restaurant after two of them kissed, the El Paso Times reports. One called police to lodge a discrimination complaint—but an officer backed the restaurant guards’ decision because same-sex public kissing was illegal, said one of the men. In fact, a 2003 Supreme Court decision ruled that law unconstitutional, and El Paso has banned discrimination in public places based on sexual orientation.

“It was a simple kiss on the lips,” said one of the men, who said he heard a guard say the restaurant didn’t put up with “that faggot stuff.” The incident has sparked a debate about the restaurant’s decision. A police detective held it was “their prerogative” to “refuse service to whoever they don't want there.” But a local lawyer called the incident “a blatant refusal to uphold the law on account of discrimination.”

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