From the press reports I’ve read you’d never know there’s a racial conflict element in this story, but there is.
Whites, Asians, and others who succeed in life earn money to buy historic properties in run-down neighborhoods.
Nonwhites, especially blacks, don’t like it and call it out as racist against them.
DENVER, Colo. (CBS4) — A coffee shop in Denver’s River North neighborhood was vandalized after posting a controversial sign.
The sign that was displayed outside the”ink! Coffee” shop at 2851 Larimer Street stated “Happily gentrifying the neighborhood since 2014.”
CBS4 received multiple calls, emails and messages about the sign in the days before the vandalism occurred.
Gentrification is a sensitive issue for many long-time residents struggling to stay in their homes as the cost to rent continues to rise.
When we asked people on Facebook what they thought about the sign, we got comments from one end of the spectrum to the other.
“Pretty insensitive, but it’s not the end of the world. Not gonna get all worked up about it,” one person wrote.
“At least they are not in denial about it,” another said.
“Very poor taste,” someone else commented.
“Free speech. Everyone has a threshold where they are offended or take it stride,” another wrote. “Sadly though, if you know the definition of gentrification, that is exactly what has happened to Denver, and the surrounding areas.”
You can join the conversation here.
On Wednesday, the coffee shop issued a public apology on Twitter. It did not go over well with many people.
It’s not that simple. Y’all need to be shut down. Gentrification isn’t and never has been a joke. It literally displaces people, changes their lives often in the worst ways. Destroys communities and cultures that accompany them. I could go on… pic.twitter.com/fdhcY3z0jD
— M✿ (@poeticgf) November 23, 2017
Of course not, your sense of entitlement to displace the poor, for your mediocre coffee, was just soooo blinding.
— mondogarage (@mondogarage) November 23, 2017
“Joke”? So, somebody at your company thought this was funny? And at least one other person had to agree and approve that, so they thought it was funny? That’s not funny
— Rick Waldron (@rwaldron) November 23, 2017
This is the “I’m sorry you feel that way” of corporate apologies
— You named your cat Gideon? (@x_scraps) November 23, 2017
The founder of ink! Coffee later issued the following statement:
“I have been following the comments on social media and listening to our customers, and I want you to know that I hear you. I have used the last 24 hours to listen to your perspectives, and to better educate myself on gentrification. I am embarrassed to say that I did not fully appreciate the very real and troubling issue of gentrification, and I want to sincerely apologize to those who understand firsthand the hardship and cultural consequences that gentrification has caused in the Five Points neighborhood, throughout the City and County of Denver and in communities throughout our state.
“When our advertising firm presented this campaign to us, I interpreted it as taking pride in being part of a dynamic, evolving community that is inclusive of people of all races, ethnicities, religions and gender identities. I recognize now that we had a blind spot to other legitimate interpretations. I sincerely apologize – absolutely and unequivocally. Over the coming weeks and months, I will continue to educate myself and my colleagues about this issue, and we will find ways to demonstrate the depths of our contrition by taking meaningful steps to support our local community and its residents.”
What a weak spine the owner of the coffee shop has. That apology may be politically correct, but it stinks.
If the Nogs don’t want the shop around, all they have to do is to begin patronizing it in large numbers. The presence of large numbers of blacks always drives whites away. The employees would also be likely to quit since blacks don’t tip.
Diversity is great, say liberals. Until THEY have to live with it.