With a torrent of blasphemous obscenities pouring out of his mouth, a homosexual coffee shop owner kicked a group of pro-life activists out his shop. The group, Abolish Human Abortion, had been peacefully assembled, bothering no one, and were simply trying to enjoy a coffee break. The shop owner discovered the group’s identity because he found a pamphlet the group had been passing out in public. Note: The group was not passing out pro-life material in the coffee shop. In fact, Caytie Davis, a member of the group, confirmed to The Liberator, “We had nothing on us, we weren’t distributing anything. We bought coffee and went upstairs.”
The owner has (or should have) the right to serve whom he wishes in his establishment. The pro-life group believes this too. Abolish Human Abortion expressed the desire that the owner be allowed to operate his business as he desires without legal consequences. Demonstrating the difference between the violent anger of the shop owner and the love found through faith in Jesus, when asked by The Liberator if she wants to see the coffee shop suffer legal consequences, Davis added, “On the contrary. My whole thought, even after, was that I hope that they continue to think about the literature, and it convicts them to the point of repentance.”
However, the hypocrisy is glaring — forcing Christian business owners to violate their conscience and the tenets of their faith by baking a cake for a same-sex marriage yet kicking pro-life groups out of coffee shops for simply being pro-life. In truth, it’s beyond simple hypocrisy because the two things aren’t actually a parallel.
One involves forcing individuals to act in opposition to their deeply held beliefs. The other—the owner of Bedlam Coffee in Seattle verbally abusing paying customers who were minding their own business as he forcefully kicks them out — can be considered assault.
The video starts with the coffee shop owner bursting in on them and demanding that they leave. Trying to engage him in dialogue, a member of the group asks, “Are you denying us service?” The owner then holds up the pamphlet he had found and tells them that he’s offended. Adopting the language of SJWs, the same group member wondered why the owner was unwilling to tolerate them. The owner pushes back by asking, “Would you tolerate my presence?”
Highlighting the difference in how the left and the right define tolerance, the group pointed out that they were in his coffee shop, so they were, in fact, tolerating his presence. The irony was lost on the owner.
From there the video quickly devolves into a stream of obscenities from the increasingly livid coffee shop owner. I’m not going to put into print what he said. Be warned if you choose to watch the video posted below: When you think that the owner can’t say something even more vile, he does.
While leaving, the pro-life group demonstrated the divide between themselves and the owner. Instead of worrying about their rights as consumers, they shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with him.
In 2012, theologian D.A. Carson published The Intolerance of Tolerance. While the book was written only five years ago, 2012 seems like a different era from today in many ways. The book has sadly proven prophetic. On page 12, Carson explains how the meaning of the words “tolerance” and “intolerance” are changing. He writes, “Intolerance is no longer a refusal to allow contrary opinions to say their piece in public, but must be understood to be any questioning or contradicting the view that all opinions are equal in value, that all worldviews have equal worth, that all stances are equally valid. To question such postmodern axioms is by definition intolerant.”
The coffee shop owner demonstrated how Carson’s prediction has come true. Tolerance used to mean tolerating those with whom you disagree. Now, for those on the left, tolerance means full acceptance of the current progressive dogma and agenda. Tolerance now means agreement, which is literally the opposite of what the word actually means.
Even though they were spending money in his shop, because the pro-life group didn’t agree with him, the coffee shop owner actually believes that they’re intolerant. Furthermore, he is undoubtedly bragging to his friends about how his behavior that day demonstrates how enlightened and tolerant he is. In our new world, which is being shaped by progressives, a circle can indeed be a square.