QUEER VOICES

Bar Owner Faces Backlash After Kicking A Gay Couple Out For Kissing

Pam Griffin says she'd have done the same for a heterosexual couple.
 

The owner of a North Carolina bar has come under fire for reportedly kicking a gay couple out of her establishment for kissing, but she contends she would have done the same to a heterosexual couple.  

Andrew Deras and Dustin Baker said that they were asked to leave Louie's Sports Pub in Fayetteville, North Carolina on Sept. 18 after what they describe as a quick kiss, The Fayetteville Observer reports. Baker said he also had his arm around Deras, but that both were "dancing and singing" together and "interacting with other people" in the bar. 

Deras, who was visiting his boyfriend from California, told WRAL that bar owner Pam Griffin also "threatened" the couple. 

"He put his arm around me, he gave me a kiss, and she said, 'This wasn't right, this wasn't OK,'" he said. "It was very minor. It was just a peck. It was two seconds."

Griffin, however, has a different story. She told local ABC affiliate WTVD that several Louie's customers had complained about the extent of affection the two men were sharing in the bar. When she asked the couple to tone it down, Griffin said one of them gave her the middle finger and cursed her, before they began French kissing. 

"I tried to be as nice as I could," Griffin told the Observer. Although Louie's is a straight bar, the owner says she's had other gay customers before, but no previous issue. "I don't mind who comes in -- white, black, mixed, Chinese. Everybody's welcome. But you have to respect the kind of place you're in."

Griffin also said that she had to ask a heterosexual couple to tone down their public display of affection two weeks ago, and yet "they still come in the bar every day," according to WTVD. 

Although details of the incident remain unclear, that hasn't stopped commentators on both sides for taking Griffin, as well as Deras and Baker, to task on Yelp and other social media outlets. 

"I challenge all patrons...straight, gay, bisexual and transgender to kiss at this bar and see if you're booted," one Yelp user wrote. "What does Pam dislike more...boys kissing or bankruptcy?"

Another Yelper who sides with Griffin wrote, "Too bad the gay mafia is lying about this place just because two sick freaks tried to make it their make out spot. It's normally a very respectable establishment."

Here's to hoping they can work this out, and maybe a free round of beers would be a nice gesture.  

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