Yelp Users Slam Virginia's Red Hen Restaurant After It Refused Service to Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Her Family
Users of the crowdsourced review app Yelp have made it clear where they won't be satisfying their hunger after learning that a Virginia dining establishment refused service to White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and seven of her family members.
On Saturday morning, Sanders tweeted: "Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for @POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so."
Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for @POTUS and I politely left. Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so
— Sarah Sanders (@PressSec) June 23, 2018
At the time of this writing, Yelp user Jean T. left a message on The Red Hen's page with the following: "Going political is a big mistake and reeks of classlessness. Sanders is a human being. Apparently you are a part of the 'tolerant left..' What a shame. #BoycottRedHen"
"Liberalism used to stand for something good... think John F. Kennedy. It is people like you who have hijacked Liberalism and turned it into Fascism. The Democratic Party are Fascists," wrote user Steve W.
"The owner is letting his political leanings interfere with his business. I don't think I want to frequent a business that might ask me to leave if they find out I'm a Republican! Thanks, but no thanks," said user Klaus C.
"Don't come to this establishment if you believe in treating people, even those you disagree with, respectfully. They are known to eject patrons based on their political views. Reprehensible," warned Victor F. in his review.
Yelp user Rick V. wrote: "I wanted to try this place until I heard they 86'ed Sarah Huckabee Sanders."
86'ed is a term used to refer to the act of removing someone from a place.
The Red Hen's profile within the app has been swarmed with comments that both condemn and support the restaurant's treatment of the Sanders family. At some point on Saturday, Yelp issued an "Active Cleanup Alert" because of the spike in media attention to the eatery.
"While we don’t take a stand one way or the other when it comes to these news events, we do work to remove both positive and negative posts that appear to be motivated more by the news coverage itself than the reviewer’s personal consumer experience with the business," reads part of a notification that appears when visiting the restaurant's app page.
Referencing holding centers for the children of illegal immigrants, a former staffer from Hillary Clinton's failed presidential campaign encouraged her followers to patronize the establishment as a way of showing solidarity with the restaurant for taking a stance on the Trump administration's immigration enforcement.
"I want to see a line outside of the Red Hen when it opens at 5 PM today to show that it’s a good business decision to turn away people who support putting kids in cages away from their mothers. 11 East Washington Street, Lexington, VA 24450. Be there. #KeepFamiliesTogether "
I want to see a line outside of the Red Hen when it opens at 5 PM today to show that it’s a good business decision to turn away people who support putting kids in cages away from their mothers.
— Rebecca Morgan (@itsmebeccam) June 23, 2018
"Can't speak for the management of Red Hen, but my personal religious conviction precludes the serving of fascists like Donald J. Trump, and their sycophantic lackeys. I'm told that those who are not served, can though still go to Colorado and drown their sorrows in the intolerantly homophobic wedding cake available there. Good on you Red Hen!," reads one supportive review from user Kevin R.
Other five-star reviews for The Red Hen echoed with similar support.
Early Saturday morning, President Trump tweeted a Drudge Report headline: "Drudge Report 'OBAMA KEPT THEM IN CAGES, WRAPPED THEM IN FOIL' We do a much better job while at the same time maintaining a MUCH stronger Border! Mainstream Fake Media hates this story."
Drudge Report “OBAMA KEPT THEM IN CAGES, WRAPPED THEM IN FOIL” We do a much better job while at the same time maintaining a MUCH stronger Border! Mainstream Fake Media hates this story.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 23, 2018
The city of Lexington, where the incident occurred, is in Virginia's 6th congressional district. It is currently represented by Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte, who is retiring this year. The district is considered the second-most Republican district in the state, according to The Roanoke Times in January.