The owner of a gym in Atlanta is doubling down on a the shocking and offensive message he posted in front of his business. Jim Chambers, owner of the EAV Barbell Club in an East Atlanta neighborhood, has taken down the sign, but is unapologetic. He says military veterans are not welcome, either.
The hand-written sign read: “RULES: DO WHATEVER THE H*LL YOU WANT, CORRECTLY, EXCEPT CROSSFIT CULTISM – NO F*CKING COPS”.
A military vet who saw the sign and took a photo, told Atlanta’s 11Alive News that he was “offended when he saw it outside the East Atlanta Village gym.”
11Alive reporter Faith Abubey talked to the defiant Chambers, who seemed to think the only problem with the sign was the vulgarity.
“It was really just that the vulgarity in that sign, and that seems to bring it out for people,” he said. “I didn’t want the other folks there to take the heat that I’m willing to take,” Chambers said. He said he plans to put the sign back up without the foul language.
“We wanted a place that is just a little different,” he explained. “It’s not a — you know — aggressive, hetero-jock space that’s dominated by cops and soldiers. It’s a place safe from that.”
He added, “And we don’t want to make the police stronger so they can hurt people more efficiently.”
Despite his obvious hostility toward cops and military, he insisted, “it’s not a personal thing.”
The charmer continued, saying, “When you put a uniform on — quite honestly — I view that as an occupying enemy army — when you put that uniform on.”
As you can imagine, Chambers is getting hammered with negative comments on his gym’s Facebook page.
“Even if you think those officers were guilty it’s pathetic to then include all law enforcement,” said one Facebook user. “What do you think our country would look like if the police stopped doing their job? Your thought process is truly laughable.”
After receiving hundreds of comments like that, the genius hit back with this:
He also posted this on Wednesday:
Apparently no one ever alerted the clueless dolt to the fact that even the racialized Obama Justice Department concluded that Officer Wilson had shot Brown in self defense and none other than the Washington Post admitted that “hands up don’t shoot” was built on a lie.
Despite the backlash, Chambers says he still stands by the message it conveyed.
“We’ve had an explicitly stated ‘No Cop’ policy since we opened, and we also don’t open membership to active members of the military,” he said.
For Chambers, a lifelong political activist, the sign and policy is a political statement outside a multi-use space which serves as a gym, community gathering spot and meeting place for activists in the metro area.
He says groups who work out there are generally minorities who are uncomfortable with the presence of law enforcement agents.
The Atlanta Police Department would not comment on the policy, but told 11Alive News, “Were we to respond to an emergency there, this sign would not stop us from lawfully doing our job.”
“If they have a warrant, they can go anywhere they want, but we’re not breaking the law,” Chambers said.
The question now is what happens if Chambers or anyone inside the gym needs the police.
Chambers says they never have, and won’t ever need the help of officers. He says he plans to put the ‘No Cop’ sign back up without the foul language.
According to lawyers 11Alive spoke with, EAV Barbell Club is probably not violating any anti-discrimination laws because police officers are not a protected class. Not that any cops or military vets would want to work out at his stupid gym, anyway.
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