Virginia coffee shop owner speaks out after business targeted for pro-life views6 min read
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FIRST ON FOX: A Virginia coffee shop owner is speaking out after his business was targeted online in response to him expressing his pro-life views on the overturn of Roe v. Wade.
Ajay Brewer, the owner of Brewers Cafe in Richmond, Virginia, spoke with Fox News Digital on Monday after his business received a slew of negative reviews and comments online when he said he supported the Supreme Court overturning the abortion precedent.
Brewer initially made the post on his personal Facebook profile following the overturn of Roe, which the Richmond native said “took on a life of its own.”
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“Anybody else as happy as I am that they overturned Roe?” Brewer wrote.
After the post, Brewer’s business was targeted by reviews that brought his near-perfect rating down to 3.3 stars while personally attacking him and making wild claims about him.
“Terrible customer service, the owner is absolutely terrible and speaks horrible to people. Would never go back,” a reviewer claimed. “Owner hates women. Told me I’m only good for making sandwiches and threw a loaf of bread at me.”
“Terrible service…. Owner is trash and does not advocate for women’s rights. We seen him spit in a customers food and he has roaches,” another wrote. “As we were leaving we seen a few rats shooting dice by the front door but honestly the rats were Kool so if you pass by tell them we said wassup.”
Some of the comments racially targeted Brewer, as well.
“Food always cold. Coffee is NEVER fresh. Horrible customer service. The place along with the owner just sucks all around,” one reviewer wrote. “Wouldn’t recommend this place to a soul and praying for it to shut down. Complete waste of space. -192765782 out of 10. And the owner can go straight to hell. Wanna be Uncle Tom a– ni–a. AND I said wtf I said.”
Brewer called the reviews, comments, names and “challenges” to his character “a pretty decent attempt at silencing me” after he posted on his personal Facebook that he was happy with the overturn of Roe.
However, the Richmond coffee shop owner was undeterred by the “online bullying,” saying that the people doing it were trying to silence him because he does not “have the same views as others do.”
“The wildest part about it all is that most of these people, and I’m assuming that it’s most because apparently there’s about 70% of the population that believes what I believe that, you know, there should be a line drawn somewhere before that second trimester,” Brewer said.
The Virginia business owner said that he does not “ascribe” to the ideology that says he cannot have an opinion on abortion as a man, declaring he has “an opinion” and “a voice” he intends to use.
Brewer, who worked in financial services for a decade before becoming a business owner with his coffee shop, added that him standing by his beliefs is a lesson of “leadership by example” for his son.
The entrepreneur, who is Black, also said that if he thinks “too many of us are getting killed by these procedures,” then he has a right to speak out if he believes it is wrong.
“But this whole idea of mixing because this particular business owner has to believe everything I believe or I will shop with them,” Brewer said. “That is not the appropriate way to handle things.”
Additionally, Brewer said his pro-life views were a recent development after questioning the pro-choice stances he grew up with. He also consumes news from outlets across the political spectrum.
Brewer said his business is involved in raising the community up, hiring people with felonies and providing a performing space for local artists. His business is also involved with the local school district.
However, since his post about Roe, all of the artists slated to perform there pulled out. Brewer found out about the cancelations via fliers posted around town.
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“And, and now we sit at a stance where because it is assumed that I am some sort of anti-woman hater, all of that is at risk of really falling apart,” the local entrepreneur said, adding the reaction to his online post was “visceral” and “like something that you see off of the news.”
Additionally, rumors of a mass staff walk-out circulated online after the post, but the rumors were untrue: Brewer had lost a single employee over the post, but the split was amicable and that the employee agreed with his views.
Brewer said he was concerned that other pro-life businesses would be targeted like his because he believes “that’s the popular thing to do now” and that the people doing it “find value” in having “nothing better to do than to tear down another business.”
The coffee shop owner continued to say that the online mob thinks it “irrelevant” that Brewer’s business helped to kickstart the “economic improvement” of his neighborhood and remarked that it is probably easier for the mob to destroy a different business not as involved in its community.
“If it’s that easy to tear me down, then it must be twice as easy to tear down another business that’s not so heavily involved in the community,” Brewer said. “If you can jump to the conclusion that Ajay Brewer hates women because he wants the [abortion] decision back in the hands of the states so that there’s not abortion anywhere, any time for any reason on-demand, then you can easily do that to a business that’s just in there just to make a profit.”
Brewer remarked that, if not for his family and other businesses associated with him, he would be doubling down on his views online, noting the “threats” and one-star reviews already hitting his father’s business, Tony’s Grill.
He also voiced his concern with people not critically reading the information they consume.
The Virginia entrepreneur said there’s “no way to sort it out as the truth” when people “don’t pay attention to the news” and form their opinions based on headlines and online posts from friends, celebrities, and politicians they follow.
He also remarked that those headlines and posts are “all based on progressive ideologies that make it to the mainstream” and that people who share in ideologies “admire” and follow the politicians and business owners who promote them.
The targeting of Brewer’s business over him expressing his pro-life views comes as liberals online rage over the overturn of Roe v. Wade, sending the subject of abortion back to state legislatures.
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Churches and pro-life organizations have been vandalized across the country in the weeks leading up to and since the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision to overturn the abortion precedent.
Abortion, however, remains dwarfed in Americans’ minds about the economy and Roe’s demise may not play as big a role in the upcoming elections as progressives think.