A Fresno, California bar is under fire for kicking out two African-American attorneys for the American Civil Liberties Union who were trying to have a night out singing karaoke, according to the ACLU.
Attorneys Abre’ Conner and Novella Coleman went to a bar called Brig. The two women were hoping for a night of karaoke and planned to sing the R&B classic, “Waterfalls,” by TLC.
“But before our song was called, 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!'”
This despite the fact they had already bought drinks, they wrote.
“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 bar is described as a “dive” on Facebook.
Conner and Coleman wrote that they were the only black customers in the bar.
“We pointed out that the bar staff was only using the rule against us and we seemed to be the only two Black people in the bar,” they wrote.
The police were called, and the police made the women leave.
“The bartender and police claimed to be exercising the business’ supposed ‘right’ to refuse service,” they wrote. “This sounds too much like when the country still had ‘colored’ sections and racially segregated water fountains. But this happened in March 2016.”