Cheers was the name of a gay bar set to open soon in Minneapolis, Minnesota. But it might never see a single customer now that its owners anti-Semitic social media posts have caused an uproar.
Emad Abed, the bar’s owner, had his previous anti-Semitic posts shared online. In them, he claimed that the “Jew-nited States of America” is controlled by “a handful” of “zionist Jews” and that “all the world’s problems are caused by Israelis & Jews.”
In one particularly odious post, he wrote (with typos):
“Did you know Israel & it’s people must be eliminated from existence. They are like cancer, Europe got rid of this disease in World War One & Two by moving this disease to ‘PALESTINE’. Now as Palestinians we are stuck with this horrible sh*t until we eliminate them from existence.”
The bar was originally planning on opening this last Friday, according to its now-defunct GoFundMe page. But since Abed’s posts have circulated online, it has also deactivated its Facebook page and a local group called “Queers Against Cheers” has organized an upcoming protest.
On its Facebook event page, Queers Against Cheers wrote, “Let’s demonstrate the revolutionary spirit of Stonewall with a good old-fashioned sidewalk picket. We’re gonna show this dangerous bigot what happens when you try to come into our community to make a buck while degrading us. Hell to the no.”
However, since it seems like the bar’s opening may not actually happen now, the protest has been postponed until the fate of the bar becomes clear.
Queers Against Cheers wrote, “This event will be postponed indefinitely. It is NOT canceled. That is because if Abed attempts to open Cheers or any other business in any location, we will be ready. Watching. Waiting. He will not earn a penny from the queer community nor anyone else. Any opening will be met with protest which will sustain a boycott.”
The group also said that if Abed tries to open the bar as a non-gay music venue, it will alert musicians about the owner’s past posts.
In a response to critics of his anti-Semitic posts, Abed reportedly wrote:
“This community is a joke. We don’t want their business or support. They can take their money to the Saloon & Gay 90. Without this group commenting on this post we will do big business and we will be the number one gay bar in town Without all the stupid losers commenting on this post (Facebook user) Andy Birkey can take his post and shuv it up his gay *ss. ?? this group here they are all racist, prejudice, biased and discriminatory, that’s why they are not welcome in my bar. My bar will still be number one without them and without their money.”
Surely he’s trolling the entire community, right? You couldn’t invent a more cartoonish villain.
But considering that the bar was already facing eviction over $21,625.56 in unpaid rent and fees, perhaps Abed’s entire venture was never going to happen anyway, anti-Semitic posts or no.