The owners of the Indiana pizzeria that said they would refuse to cater a gay wedding were forced to temporarily suspend service after a slew of online threats. The pizzeria was reopened after supporters donated more than $842,000. However, at least one of those donations came from an unexpected source.
Courtney Hoffman, a gay woman, donated $20 to Memories Pizza even though the owners admitted they would refuse to cater a gay wedding. However, the owners did say that they serve gay customers in their restaurant in the same local news interview.
Hoffman attached a note to her donation, which read, “As a member of the gay community, I would like to apologize for the mean spirited attacks on you and your business. I know many gay individuals who fully support your right to stand up for your beliefs and run your business according to those beliefs.”
She concluded, “We are outraged at the level of hate and intolerance that has been directed at you and I sincerely hope that you are able to rebuild.”
Kris Cruz, producer of a radio show called “The Jeff Adams Show,” discovered Hoffman’s donation and attached comment. Cruz contacted Hoffman through Facebook and convinced her to do an interview on the show.
Hoffman told the radio hosts, “My girlfriend and I are small business owners, and we think there is a difference between operating in a public market space and then attaching the name of your business to a private event.
“Like, if we were asked to set up at an anti-gay marriage rally, I mean, we would have to decline,” she said.
Hoffman added that she was disturbed by the violent and hateful threats made against the pizzeria owners. Many of those comments were made by gay individuals, which surprised Hoffman.
She explained: “The gay community that we know knows full well what it’s like to be condemned for doing nothing but living your life according to your beliefs. We know so many gay individuals that fully support the freedom of living your life according to your beliefs and feel that freedom extends to everyone, even the people that we don’t agree with.”
Hoffman said she was nervous in anticipation of what the reaction towards her would be like. However, she said that she has received support and positive reactions.
Hoffman said that she realizes people have different beliefs and often those are breaking points in society. However, she stressed the importance of trying to find some middle ground.
“I just think there’s a lot of room for differences and similarities between all of these businesses, all of these communities, and if we can remember that differences don’t equal maliciousness, and try to find what we have in common — you know, the ands instead of the ors. Maybe we can move beyond threats of violence and have open discussions of the things that we don’t agree on.”
Sources: The Blaze / Photo Source: The Blaze