By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
A Cheyenne bar is facing backlash for selling T-shirts that feature threatening and offensive language.
The Eagle’s Nest, a bar that primarily caters to motorcyclists, received much criticism on social media over the weekend when a photo of a shirt the bar sold began circulating.
The shirt features a man pointing a pistol and reads “In Wyoming, we have a cure for AIDS, we shoot f—–‘n f—–s.”
It wasn’t clear how long the bar has been selling these shirts, but pro-LGBTQ organization Wyoming Equality reached out to the Eagle’s Nest over the weekend to ask it to stop selling the shirts. The bar declined to do so.
“We hoped that they would choose to stop selling them when they realized the harm it did to the LGBTQ community and those living with AIDS,” Wyoming Equality wrote in a social media post about the shirt. “Wyoming Equality understands that…this sucks.”
The organization chose not to name the bar in its post, as it did not want the Eagle’s Nest to gain notoriety or sell more shirts. Wyoming Equality also asked people not to protest the bar, for similar reasons.
Instead, Wyoming Equality asked people to donate to it or the Wyoming AIDS Assistance if they wanted to respond to the sale of the shirts.
Wyoming Equality Executive Director Sara Burlingame made a similar post on her personal social media account over the weekend and proposed other ideas to fight back against the sale of the shirts.
“Want to make it unpopular to be a bigot?” she wrote. “Donate to Wyoming Equality or Wyoming AIDS Assistance. Put a pride flag up in your business or home. Wear one of our cool AF shirts. Pass a Hate Crime bill. Invest in queer joy and resilience. Let the haters hate in their own misery. Keep Wyoming queer and wild.”
The owner of the bar said their violent homophobic shirts are “sold out,” and are not available, according to the Cheyenne Post.
Bar owner Ray Bereziuk told The Cheyenne Post that his bar has stopped selling the shirts. He said that he is “in the bar business, not the apparel business,” and that he would not be reordering the shirts.
A woman who answered the telephone at the Eagle’s Nest on Monday declined to comment on the issue.