Greeting my ffriends and family!!!
So now that I just got out of the lastest IMPACT Cincinnati meeting I'll update you fine folks on the goings on at our sit-in protest thingy at Tabby's American Bar out in Maineville/Landon in Warren County.
As I'm sure most of you know, a fine (and I mean FINE) fellow named Ronnie was verbally abused and viciously beaten up at the restaurant last week.
Last night a sizeable group of more than 50 white-shirted LGBTQ people and our allies gathered there in solidarity with the straight patrons to fight the hate and show them that we exist and that we are fun, peaceful people!
As some of our UC contingent gathered at the Clifton (Corryville) Walgreens for our car-pool, many of us were interviewed by the UC's school newspaper, the Newsrecord (props to my friend Taylor Dungjen, editor in chief).
I'll tell ya, it wasa helluva turnout! We walked into the parking lot and were quickly met by Channels 5, 9, and 12 as well as the Cincinnati Enquirer and City Beat. Myself, Blake Jelley, Liz Vallano (our own Juliet) and Chris Gilbert formed the IMPACT Cincinnati team which immediately were inundated with media coverage!
Eventually, some of Ronnie's friends and family joined us and were met with mass support.
*see Barry's post below for links to the stories!*
After we ran our rounds of interviews we headed inside to the applause from many of the Tabby's patrons It was a very heartwarming and uplifting experience! The Tabby's staff was very pleasent and helpful (though I did not get a chance to meet or talk to the owner). Our white-clad contingent mingled with patrons and had a grand old time with some food and drinks.
At some point later in the night Ronnie himself came out (no pun intended!) and I had the pleasure of sitting down with him (and Blake) and chatting for about an hour. I gotta say, his boyfriend is a lucky guy because Ronnie is one the most courageous and strong individuals that I've met in my time in the queer community. The fine boy ended up getting bashed because he vocally defended another patron for being called "gay" (which he was not). The numerous assailants quickly turned on him and taunted him. They proceeded to back Ronnie out the doors and into the parking lot where they proceeded to punch, claw, and kick him (the women took their shoes off at least; how classy).
Physically, our most beautiful Ronnie has reatined his lovely face (the bruises and lacerations are healing nicely). He will be getting nose surgery some time to correct his badly broken nose (trust me, you gotta look HARD to notice).
Ronnie also told me that mentally he is more paranoid than before, and rightly so! From what I saw of his body language, it seems like he's got a good, resonable head on his shoulders and I think he's gonna do great in the future. It's like we talked about last night, he always wanted to be famous, and now he is! He hasn't been dealt the cards in the order he thought they would be, but it's happening!
So in conclusion, the Tabby's event was a great event. From what Ronnie, his friends, and his family have told me, if Tabby's American Grill would trully have a "no hate" mentality then they would have done more in the past to prevent the regular bar-fights that go on there... I'll let you make your own descisions on your patronage of the establishment...
So everyone, keep an eye out for Juliet's upcoming post complete with photos from last night!!!