American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) attorneys—trying to find a place for Karaoke—say they were kicked out of a Fresno area bar because they were Black.
Two Black attorneys were trying to have a good time at the Fresno, California bar Brig when two white bar workers came up to them and kicked them out.
Attorneys Abre’ Conner and Novella Coleman wrote on the ACLU website about wanting to find a good place to sing a little Karaoke, so they stumbled upon the Brig bar and signed up. Two bar workers approached them saying they need to buy drinks. The workers said the bar’s policy is that people must buy drinks before they can sing Karaoke.
“But before our song was called [‘Waterfalls’ by TLC], a bar employee came up and said we had to buy drinks to sing Karaoke,” they wrote on the ACLU’s website. “Another bartender lunged at us within inches of our faces and shouted ‘Buy drinks!’”
According to their written statement, the two women did not have drinks prior to the karaoke session. However, the bar workers began to get rough, explains the two women.
“A second bartender — a very tall and large man — shouted louder and louder that we were loitering and that the bar wasn’t a hangout place,” they wrote. “Over and over again he pushed his body up against Abre’ — who is just 5’4” tall — to force her out of the bar.”
The incident became a massive fracas according to the written statement. An off-duty waitress came up to the women in order to smooth things out but it did not get better. The bar employees were insistently trying to get the women out of the bar. Other customers tried to buy them drinks and some even said the one drink rule did not exist.
The local authorities had to be notified.
When cops arrived, the women were still forced to leave.
“The bartender and police claimed to be exercising the business’ supposed ‘right’ to refuse service. This sounds too much like when the country still had ‘colored’ sections and racially segregated water fountains. But this happened in March 2016,” the two attorneys wrote.