Tennessee Senator Stacey Campfield's proposed "Don't Say Gay" law continues to divide residents -- but one local restaurateur made her views on the legislation resoundingly clear this weekend.
As Metropulse and Towleroad are reporting, Martha Boggs, the owner of Knoxville's The Bistro at the Bijou, asked Campfield to leave after he tried to dine at her establishment.
Following the incident, Boggs posted a status on her restaurant's Facebook page which read, "I hope that Stacy (sic) Campfield now knows what it feels like to be unfairly discriminated against."
Metropulse reports that Boggs later clarified her actions in an interview. "I didn't want his hate in my restaurant," she said. "I told him he wasn't welcome here. ... I feel like he's gone from being stupid to being dangerous, and I wanted to stand up to him." Boggs is also due to appear on HuffPost Gay Voices Editor-at-Large Michelangelo Signorile's radio program on SiriusXM OutQ today to talk about the experience.
Many have been quick to applaud Boggs' actions on Facebook. "You didn't unfairly discriminate against Stacey Campfield," one user praised. "You have the right to refuse service to anyone, especially a poorly educated bigot."
Still, another user added, "Denying service to a man because you don't agree with his opinions is no different than denying service to a man because you don't like his skin color."
Boggs' actions come on the heels of an interview Campfield gave last week to Signorile, in which the senator made controversial statements on the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the media's supposed "glorification" of homosexuals.
"Most people realize that AIDS came from the homosexual community -- it was one guy screwing a monkey, if I recall correctly, and then having sex with men. It was an airline pilot, if I recall," he said in the interview. "My understanding is that it is virtually -- not completely, but virtually -- impossible to contract AIDS through heterosexual sex...very rarely [transmitted]."