Restaurant Told Black Frat Group They Didn't Want To Serve 'Your Kind'

A restaurant in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, rescinded a reservation for an black alumni fraternity organization, citing security for their event as a concern.

A predominantly black fraternity in Alabama is suing a restaurant after they claim they were denied service due to racism.

The Tuscaloosa alumni chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi said they were told, just a couple of weeks before a planned event in February at the Cypress Inn in Tuscaloosa, that the restaurant would no longer accommodate their request due to alleged security concerns. The fee for the reservation was returned.

When asked what security concerns there could be, the restaurant said, according to the frat, “We've had problems with your kind before.”

The lawsuit also alleged that the restaurant made the decision to cancel only after discovering who was in the alumni group.

“A comment was made by the Cypress Inn representative that she did not know the plaintiffs were an ‘all black’ group,” the frat’s attorney, Roderick Cooks, said.

Kappa Alpha Psi is suing the restaurant for discrimination, as well as for loss of income they likely endured from hosting their fundraising event at a different, less popular location. The restaurant denied any wrongdoing, citing their security detail’s advice to cancel the event.

“Our outside security firm recommended against hosting the party because the fraternity was proposing to sell tickets to the public and our security firm strongly recommended against hosting that type party out of concern for public safety,” the restaurant said.

At a separate frat event years ago hosted by a different all-black group, tickets were oversold for the venue and people were turned away from the door. A scuffle nearby the restaurant resulted in three individuals being shot.

That, if anything, however, further proves the point that the restaurant’s actions (regardless of what their security team told them) were racist. There was no indication that this group and the other group were affiliated, or that this alumni organization would be violent in nature. The decision to link the two events — the one in the past and the one that Cypress Inn had prepared to host for Kappa Alpha Psi — was based on nothing more than the members’ skin colors.

Restaurant owners who deny people patronage on the basis of their skin color, or otherwise behave in racist ways, need to be held accountable for their actions. This is 2018 — it’s far past time we as a nation start acting like we’re in the 21st century.

Banner/thumbnail image credit: JamesDeMers/Pixabay

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