Thursday, May 24, 2018

Virginia Hardware Store Fires Anti-Gay Employee

On Monday I did a blog post that looked at the ugly anti-gay incident that occurred at Nichols Hardware in Purcellville, Virginia.  Faced with calls for a boycott and a deluge of upset phone calls, the store management announced that it had fired the offending employee who had thrown an Eagle Scout candidate out of the store after launching into an anti-gay tirade. The lesson, of course, is that if one is a business in the public square, all customers should be welcome and treated courteously. No doubt the lesson will be lost on Christofascists who will parade the employee - whose name has not been released - as the latest martyr in an effort to stir up anti-gay outrage.  The Washington Post reports on this development:

A historic hardware store in Purcellville, Va., announced Tuesday morning it has fired an employee accused of using an anti-gay slur while kicking out a teenage Boy Scout seeking donations for a service project.
“The Nichols Hardware family regrets that this even has come to pass,” the store said in a Facebook post. “The employee in question has been terminated and his views certainly do not reflect those of the Nichols Hardware.”
“He told them, ‘Your organization is not the ‘Boy Scouts’ anymore. We will not support you and you need to leave,’ ” Carlyn Hamilton wrote in her post. Then the employee, she said, turned to her and continued, “You know they let homos in, right? They are not the ‘Boy’ Scouts anymore. We do not support any homos.”
The store manager, who would only identify himself as Glenn, said in an interview Tuesday that this wasn’t the first time the employee had angered customers with his politically charged comments.
Months ago, he said, he had told the employee to stop talking to customers like that and thought the problem had been resolved until the incident Friday. . . . He described the employee as “set in his ways,” and added that he would like to apologize in person to the boy and his father but didn’t know their names or phone numbers. “It was uncalled for,” he said.
The clash marked another skirmish in the nationwide culture war over the rapid expansion of gay rights in the United States. Few organizations have been more emblematic of this than the Boy Scouts. In 2013, the organization ended its prohibition on openly gay youths . . . . The moves haven’t been universally popular. Many religious conservatives have seen the Boy Scouts as a pillar of traditional values. This month, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which teaches that gay relationships are immoral, ended its century-long relationship with the organization.
People have demanded a boycott of the store on social media, and its phones have been deluged with calls.  The store has now moved to quell the firestorm.  “The family, who has been in Loudoun County since 1742, and which expresses tolerance in all areas of life, deeply regrets any disrespect to any organization or person,” it said in its statement Tuesday.

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