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(Wisconsin Gazette)   Restaurant owner faces $5,000 judgment for starting gay rumor about customer   (wisconsingazette.com) divider line
    More: Silly, Texas Supreme Court, Johnson County, morris, central nervous systems, trial court, own  
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9931 clicks; posted to Main » on 06 Feb 2012 at 12:54 PM (8 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2012-02-06 9:53:21 AM  
In court, Warren and Morris testified that they are not gay, and Morris said he repeatedly asked Van Meter to stop asking the questions but she refused, saying it would take a lawsuit to get her to stop.

Ask and ye shall receive.
 
2012-02-06 9:57:53 AM  
I was going to say something about this ruling would indicate that there is something wrong with being gay which seems quite wrong. Like would you offer money to someone for hurting a white guy's reputation by suggesting he's black? Then I read it was in Texas. No hope anyway.
 
2012-02-06 10:05:42 AM  

WorldCitizen: I was going to say something about this ruling would indicate that there is something wrong with being gay which seems quite wrong.


A rumor's a rumor, whether you agree the particular insinuation itself should be viewed negatively. It was intended to hurt.

I'm just not so sure how damaging it really was. Pretty tenuous connection between cause and effect IMHO. The guy was a regular. Two maybe three times a day? I would think the other patrons knew him pretty well.
 
2012-02-06 10:15:12 AM  
Texas: Welcome to America's Dark Ages
 
2012-02-06 11:02:07 AM  
farm5.static.flickr.comView Full Size
 
2012-02-06 11:19:03 AM  
For awhile, people starting rumors about me was the only way I ever got dates.
 
2012-02-06 12:00:10 PM  
wait, bruce willis' kid came out? i need to start reading tmz.
 
2012-02-06 12:03:04 PM  
These are the sort of things that happen when you go to the Blue Oyster Bar & Grill 3 times a day.

/really Frank's Place, but that won't stop me.
 
2012-02-06 12:55:23 PM  
seriously?
 
2012-02-06 12:59:03 PM  
I'm very curious how he proved that the allegations hurt his business. That's really the toughest thing to pove in cases like these.
 
2012-02-06 12:59:55 PM  
Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Seriously though, if there's nothing wrong with being gay, how can being called gay be defamatory / slanderous?

/IANAL
/DNRTFA
 
2012-02-06 1:00:49 PM  
If a member of the waitstaff were to harrass me in any way, such as this, I would demonstrate my displeasure by taking my business elsewhere and letting the business owner know that they are losing my custom. I cannot fathom why this person returned to the restaurant every day for 20 years with this going on.

"The food is so good, I endured their homophobic remarks for twenty years to the detriment of my health"
 
2012-02-06 1:01:03 PM  
It's bad to be gay? Or just bad to be called gay?
 
2012-02-06 1:02:19 PM  
I guess they're not ready to come out yet.
 
2012-02-06 1:04:41 PM  
how do i get in on this gayvy train?
 
2012-02-06 1:06:19 PM  
From the article - Morris had been a regular customer at Frank's Place, dining there two or three times a day for 20 years,

What a lamoid.

Cook your own food if thats not too much of a challenge for ya.
 
2012-02-06 1:07:43 PM  
It's judgment, not judgEment, Subby.

/shakes tiny lawyer fist
 
2012-02-06 1:08:22 PM  

Attila the Bun: Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Seriously though, if there's nothing wrong with being gay, how can being called gay be defamatory / slanderous?


You're a ballerina.

/and there's nothing wrong with that
 
2012-02-06 1:09:29 PM  
Oddly enough, as the stigma associated with being openly gay disappears, so will the justification for this lawsuit.
 
2012-02-06 1:10:14 PM  
Yeah, this one's a puzzler. In Normal-world, it's not a slur to state mistakenly - joking or not - that someone is gay. It's just dumb. Pointless. So on those grounds, no damages should be recoverable.

But this is Texas, and the restaurant owner does sound like she was being rather dickish, just because she was making the same ridiculous statement about a customer over and over, regardless of its content.

Sounds like she got off lucky with $5,000.

Next case!
 
2012-02-06 1:10:30 PM  

L.D. Ablo: It's judgment, not judgEment, Subby.

/shakes tiny lawyer fist


motherfarkin Webster
 
2012-02-06 1:10:43 PM  

Attila the Bun: Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Seriously though, if there's nothing wrong with being gay, how can being called gay be defamatory / slanderous?

/IANAL
/DNRTFA


#1 - whether you want to be out or not is the individual's choice
#2 - when a ton of people do think it's bad, there can be negative consequences even if you personally don't find anything bad about being gay

It's defamatory, regardless of the particular accusation.

But like I said earlier, he's going to have a rough time proving a causal connection to his failed business.
 
2012-02-06 1:12:54 PM  

Bob16: From the article - Morris had been a regular customer at Frank's Place, dining there two or three times a day for 20 years,

What a lamoid.

Cook your own food if thats not too much of a challenge for ya.


If you do the math, that's quite a bit of money a year to loss. Even if it's just a coffee and pie on one of the 2 to 3 times a day, and the other 1 to 2 times were full meals.
/restaurant owner is dumb
 
2012-02-06 1:15:56 PM  
I think it would depend on the business he is in. If he is an interior decorator, no harm done. If he is an urologist, I can see where it might drive away some customers.

Yeah, I went there. NTTAWWT
 
2012-02-06 1:17:29 PM  

Diogenes: But like I said earlier, he's going to have a rough time proving a causal connection to his failed business.


Apparently he was able to prove it to the tune of $5000. Not a lot, but he made his point.
 
2012-02-06 1:19:03 PM  
Should be interesting how he "proves" it.
 
2012-02-06 1:19:47 PM  

cefm: Oddly enough, as the stigma associated with being openly gay disappears, so will the justification for this lawsuit.


Nope, it'll still be there. Regardless of stigma, it's an accusation of misrepresentation. He has represented himself as a straight man; she has attempted to call that representation into question without just cause. If I represent myself as having a bachelor's in math and you claim to the public that, in fact, I have a degree in, say, communications, then you implicitly assert that I have lied and misrepresented myself.
 
2012-02-06 1:20:47 PM  
What does a Phong van meter look like? Is it an add-on for the dash, or what?
 
2012-02-06 1:21:53 PM  

WorldCitizen: I was going to say something about this ruling would indicate that there is something wrong with being gay which seems quite wrong. Like would you offer money to someone for hurting a white guy's reputation by suggesting he's black? Then I read it was in Texas. No hope anyway.


Another key is the intent. If you're spreading rumors that someone is gay / atheist / Jewish / whatever with the intention of it being damaging, even if most reasonable people might not consider it to be damaging, then it's slander.

cgraves67: If a member of the waitstaff were to harrass me in any way, such as this, I would demonstrate my displeasure by taking my business elsewhere and letting the business owner know that they are losing my custom. I cannot fathom why this person returned to the restaurant every day for 20 years with this going on.

"The food is so good, I endured their homophobic remarks for twenty years to the detriment of my health"


There's a few places...

When I was on a tunnel contract in Hudson Falls, NY, there was a local pizza/wings joint called Chef Jeffs. Their vinegar/mustard based sauce was farking incredible. They could could have called me whatever the hell they wanted as long as they still served the food. :0
 
2012-02-06 1:22:08 PM  

Godscrack: For awhile, people starting rumors about me was the only way I ever got dates.

So, you paid women to write on bathroom walls "Godscrack has a big c**k" ?
 
2012-02-06 1:24:23 PM  

Bob16: From the article - Morris had been a regular customer at Frank's Place, dining there two or three times a day for 20 years,

What a lamoid.

Cook your own food if thats not too much of a challenge for ya.


perhaps some people live in walk up the stairs buildings, escalating bringing home bags of groceries from a chore to a taxing work-out.
some people live spartan lifestyles. perhaps he just rents a room and does not have cooking privileges.
maybe he's like my wife, who prefers someone else do all the cooking, except for the 1 or 2 holiday glory meals a year when she pretends to be a wife.
so many possibilities.
insulting customers or making patrons feel uneasy is piss-poor customer service unless you truly want them to go elsewhere.
 
2012-02-06 1:27:20 PM  
In addition to awarding Morris $5,000 in damages for mental anguish, the judge ordered Van Meter to stop making or publishing "defamatory, libelous and slanderous" statements against Morris, including that he and Warren are "homosexual partners or lovers."


How does an 8 year old own a restaurant?
 
2012-02-06 1:27:56 PM  

L.D. Ablo: It's judgment, not judgEment, Subby.

/shakes tiny lawyer fist


*FIST BUMP*
 
2012-02-06 1:31:20 PM  
I think perhaps the article writer made a mistake when he or she wrote 2 or 3 times a day, and instead meant 2 or 3 times a week.
 
2012-02-06 1:32:58 PM  

Attila the Bun: Not that there's anything wrong with that...

Seriously though, if there's nothing wrong with being gay, how can being called gay be defamatory / slanderous?

/IANAL
/DNRTFA


Heehee... I ANAL
 
2012-02-06 1:35:06 PM  
I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat. Was the food there really THAT good? I would have walked out without finishing my meal the first time a resturant owner or employee made me feel like that. Don't care what they were emplying. Just one more example of what is wrong with american buisness today, once apon a time "the customer was always right" and most places were gratefull for your buisness and hard earned cash. Now they could care less if you are right and feel YOU should feel privilaged that they even let you through the door!
 
2012-02-06 1:35:21 PM  

mikaloyd: It's bad to be gay? Or just bad to be called gay?


armchairgeneralist.typepad.comView Full Size

Come with me citizen.
 
GBB
2012-02-06 1:35:55 PM  
everything is bigger in Texas. Including the douchebags.
 
2012-02-06 1:39:17 PM  
I Love You Philip Morris!!

/maybe she got her gay Morris' from Texas confused
 
2012-02-06 1:40:46 PM  

Kraut10: I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat. Was the food there really THAT good? I would have walked out without finishing my meal the first time a resturant owner or employee made me feel like that. Don't care what they were emplying. Just one more example of what is wrong with american buisness today, once apon a time "the customer was always right" and most places were gratefull for your buisness and hard earned cash. Now they could care less if you are right and feel YOU should feel privilaged that they even let you through the door!


I wonder why...
[image from cdn0.deathandtaxesmag.com too old to be available]
Degrading intestinal tracts for over 25 years.
 
2012-02-06 1:40:49 PM  
The customer's not gay, but he kept going back to the restaurant where the owner kept insinuating he was gay. Are there no other restaurants in that town? Did this not become a problem for him until his boyfriend got pissed about it?

/I want answers!
 
2012-02-06 1:41:37 PM  
While there's nothing wrong with being gay, having rumours started about being gay can drive women away from the guy.

I'm talking about experience. A couple of years ago, at my then current workplace, someone apparently started a rumour about me being gay.

I found out when I was courting this girl and when I made my intentions clear she told me she was surprised because she thought I was gay.

Then a female aquintance confirmed there was some talk in the office about it.

It was infuriating.
 
2012-02-06 1:42:09 PM  
What? Gay, dear? Who, dear? Me dear? No, dear

4.bp.blogspot.comView Full Size


How very dare you!
 
2012-02-06 1:42:45 PM  

Kraut10: I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat. Was the food there really THAT good? I would have walked out without finishing my meal the first time a resturant owner or employee made me feel like that. Don't care what they were emplying. Just one more example of what is wrong with american buisness today, once apon a time "the customer was always right" and most places were gratefull for your buisness and hard earned cash. Now they could care less if you are right and feel YOU should feel privilaged that they even let you through the door!


And how do you squeeze 20 years of dining in After the woman calls him 'ghey' in 2007, 2008?
 
2012-02-06 1:43:40 PM  

cgraves67: I cannot fathom why this person returned to the restaurant every day for 20 years with this going on.

"The food is so good, I endured their homophobic remarks for twenty years to the detriment of my health"



Kraut10: I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat.


Know how I can tell you didn't read the article?
 
2012-02-06 1:45:58 PM  

An Account To Make Comments: Kraut10: I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat. Was the food there really THAT good? I would have walked out without finishing my meal the first time a resturant owner or employee made me feel like that. Don't care what they were emplying. Just one more example of what is wrong with american buisness today, once apon a time "the customer was always right" and most places were gratefull for your buisness and hard earned cash. Now they could care less if you are right and feel YOU should feel privilaged that they even let you through the door!

And how do you squeeze 20 years of dining in After the woman calls him 'ghey' in 2007, 2008?


I'm sure that's not the only time he felt insulted there. Just saying, once would be enough for me.
 
2012-02-06 1:48:47 PM  

Attila the Bun: Seriously though, if there's nothing wrong with being gay, how can being called gay be defamatory / slanderous?


This is Texas. Being gay in Texas carries an automatic death penalty, and the natives love to kill them.
 
2012-02-06 1:49:21 PM  
We should totally start a rumor about the restaurant owner.
 
2012-02-06 1:50:38 PM  

treesloth: cgraves67: I cannot fathom why this person returned to the restaurant every day for 20 years with this going on.

"The food is so good, I endured their homophobic remarks for twenty years to the detriment of my health"


Kraut10: I'm still confused as to why it took 20 years for this guy to get tired of this woman's shiat.

Know how I can tell you didn't read the article?


I got a few paragraphs in. What stunning revelations were further down the page?
 
2012-02-06 1:50:46 PM  
Good thing she didn't tell him to go get his shine box.
takemystockplease.comView Full Size
 
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