The escalating crisis in California between residents, local officials, and federal agents reached a pathetic new low in recent days; with one Bay Area coffee shop flat-out refusing to serve law enforcement to protect the “safety of our customers.”
According to NBC local news, the Hasta Muerte Coffee Company -a restaurant owned by its employees- refused to serve a police officer last February; declining to sell the law enforcement official a cup of coffee while on duty.
The officer left without incident.
The company posted a lengthy description of the event on social media days later, saying the restaurant has “a policy of asking police to leave for the physical and emotional safety of our customers and ourselves.”
“The facts are that [People of Color], women, and queer police are complicit in upholding the same law and order that routinely criminalizes and terrorizes black and brown and poor folks, especially youth, trans, and houseless folks,” adds the statement.
The hateful rhetoric comes as President Trump plans his visit to the state; slamming California officials for routinely violating federal law and shielding illegal immigrants under their ‘Sanctuary City’ policies.
Read the full statement below:
Last Friday February 16th a police (OPD) entered our shop and was told by one of our worker-owners that “we have a policy of asking police to leave for the physical and emotional safety of our customers and ourselves.” Since then, cop supporters are trying to publicly shame us online with low reviews because this particular police visitor was Latino. He broadcasted to his network that he was “refused service” at a local business and now the rumblings are spreading. We know in our experience working on campaigns against police brutality that we are not alone saying that police presence compromises our feeling of physical & emotional safety. There are those that do not share that sentiment – be it because they have a friend or relative who is a police, because they are white or have adopted the privileges whiteness affords, because they are home- or business- owning, or whatever the particular case may be. If they want to make claims about police being part of the community, or claims that race trumps the badge & gun when it comes to police, they must accept that the burden of proof for such a claim is on them. OPDs recent attempts to enlist officers of color and its short term touting of fewer officer involved shootings does not reverse or mend its history of corruption, mismanagement, and scandal, nor a legacy of blatant repression. The facts are that poc, women, and queer police are complicit in upholding the same law and order that routinely criminalizes and terrorizes black and brown and poor folks, especially youth, trans, and houseless folks. For these reasons and so many more, we need the support of the actual community to keep this place safe, not police. Especially in an area faced by drug sales and abuse, homelessness, and toxic masculinity as we see here on this block. We want to put this out to our communities now, in case we end up facing backlash because as we know OPD, unlike the community, has tons of resources, many of which are poured into maintaining smooth public relations to uphold power. It will be no surprise if some of those resources are steered toward discrediting us for not inviting them in as part of the community.