94 responses

  1. Sportin’ Life
    November 12, 2008

    They ALL have “best friends who are gay”. It’s simply amazing, isn’t it?

  2. Timothy Kincaid
    November 12, 2008

    For whatever reason, the “No” campaign didn’t move her, didn’t prick her conscience. The “Yes” side did.

    Well, that’s not quite accurate.

    She wasn’t “moved” by the Yes side. She was part of the Yes side.

  3. Sandy
    November 12, 2008

    It’s incredible that people can blame the leadership of any organization for the beliefs of the memebers. We do not follow blindly as some think. Why can’t we have Gay friends and relitives. If we don’t agree should we stay on the other side of the street and say ..ewwwww we can’t like them. Sooo kindergarten! They dont chose my life style and I don’t chose thiers. It seems crazy that some question my loyalty to my friends and family that are gay, wihout prescribing to thier choices. And YES..I am LDS. I work, play and associate with gay people. I love them. It’s not a disease or a race…they are people, as we are people. Many religions were involved…why target one religion? If somone needed help I can garuntee you that we would NOT ask if you were gay or straight, black, white or purple or blue! And most of all. If the vote were to have gone the other direction… we wouldnt be yelling HATERS and sinners to the world. I do and will always love my friends..I dont care what they are. However I still beleive in traditional marriage. Thats why we live in this great land…so we have the freedoms to vote how we feel.

  4. Jhon
    November 12, 2008

    This is the destruction that is caused by religious tyranny and it’s drones. People do things that harm other people, than those opressed fight back. People get hurt and relationships fall apart. Nobody in this situation wins. It’s very sad but seems to be a necessary turn of events.

  5. Patrick
    November 12, 2008

    @Sandy

    You love your friends so much you would deny them the same rights you have.

    You didn’t get to vote on how you feel. You voted to take away the rights of a group of people. This wasn’t “check this box if you feel happy and check this box if you feel sad”. It was “check this box if you think this group should have the same rights as you, check this box if you think this group should not have the same rights as you.” You were not voting on your religious beliefs, you were voting on another group’s civil rights. Why is that so hard for people like you to understand? This is prejudice, pure and simple. I don’t think you would take it gracefully if people voted to remove your right to marry. Think about it Sandy, think about it. You violated the Golden Rule. You transgressed Jesus’ explicit teachings.

  6. julie
    November 12, 2008

    I am a lesbian and used to work for El Coyote. I worked there for 8 years and I know Margie. She is a very sweet woman. Let me be clear that I don’t agree with the $100.00 that she gave to the Mormon Church, but I really do believe she was unaware of the consequences. I want to share with you the good things she has provided for her employees…medical insurance, dental insurance, paid vacation and Christmas bonuses. There’s something we all have to remember here…there are other companies out there who gave a hell of a lot more money then she did… We live in a country, USA, the land of the free. Freedom of speech. We have a right to vote how we feel. That is what America is all about. I agree with everyone’s outrage that a 8 passed.We need to focus on how to overturn this.
    Instead of focusing on a mom and pop operation, we should also look at the other much larger companies that poured thousands and possibly millions of dollars into passing prop 8. If we would picket them and make them realize that we have a very large voice out there, maybe we could persuade them to think differently.
    Focus on how we can get this put into law. Focus on the lawmakers and the general public. We need to educate people not persecute them, because then we are no better than they are.

  7. DW
    November 12, 2008

    We have choice in this country. Because she made a choice that we don’t like (and will be changed one day) we don’t try to destroy someone’s business. That is wrong and only adds conflict with no resolution. She is a nice person with some outdated opinions but ones she has been taught by her church. Be nice everyone. She tried to make amends which is more than a lot of people do. NO BOYCOTT

  8. Patrick
    November 12, 2008

    “but I really do believe she was unaware of the consequences.”

    Then she could have apologized and repented. She had a chance to repent after learning of the consequences and didn’t. Enough said.

  9. Kith
    November 13, 2008

    To people who say “leave her alone, she just exercised her choice.” Consider that people who are boycotting her and just “exercising their choice” as well.

    Freedom of Speech, has never meant freedom from consequences of speech. The balance to unlimited free speech was the tempering of societal pressure, this is why the founding fathers where able to grant free speech without flinching. They knew that you would be free to say whatever you want, but at the time everyone was aware the wrong speech might exclude them from polite company. Now then when the spending of money was declared free speech, the same temper needed to be placed on it. This means people are free to give $100 or $1,000,000 to a political campaign, but such speech was to be made available for public review, they made sure that such “speech” couldn’t be private. So now we see the very reason for such protections.

    She was free to exercise her speech, giving $100 to the Yes on 8 campaign, which she did with no outside interference, the government didn’t pass laws to prevent it, no one broke into her house to tear up the check, her accounts where not frozen by a financial insinuation who may have disapproved, no constable showed up on her door step or drafted a tersely worded letter. Thus is the protection of her rights to speech, none of which inoculates her from the consequences of her actions. Those consequences turn out to be a raw sense of betrayal in her and the feelings that engenders. It may very well be the loss of her business, that is the risk of any who put themselves in the public sphere. While it may be a tragedy, while it may seem cruel, that is the price of irresponsible speech and the balance to free speech.

    Too long it has been accepted that freedom of speech has left us free to say what ever we want without consequences. This NEEDS to change, and the sooner the better for society. We must return to a world where we are free to say whatever we want but are fully aware that we are being judged by our speech. We must be free to say whatever we want but be wise enough to temper what we say, and in the end be willing to accept the consequences of all our speech, especially when it effects others.

  10. Tony D\’
    November 13, 2008

    The owner of El Coyote, Marjorie Christofferson, has the right to feel as she wishes. It is HER decision. Not the Church’s or anyone else’s-HERS! How stupid and hateful for her to act that way, not even considering her staff and customer base’s feelings. She is not a friend to either. Just as she decided to share her money with people that were planning to spread their message to others, so shall we. I will personally continue to share my feelings about how I feel about her actions to all my friends and colleagues. I will e-mail my message to everyone in my vast e-mail list. I will post messages and signs asking people to help us support the campaign to renounce Prop 8 by boycotting businesses that contributed to the “Yes on 8[YO8]” lie-campaign. Unlike hers, mine is not a message of hate, but of “retributive education.”
    In the spirit of sharing, allow me to share this link, where you will find a list of all major donors to YO8 and their contact info, with you: http://californiansagainsthate.com/dishonorRoll.html

  11. Mikel McGrew
    November 13, 2008

    People such as Cy Vance who continue to consort with the enemy are one reason it has taken so long to gain the rights we DO have. How much self-loathing does it take to patronize a place of business that has spent your money to harm you? Cy, dear, El Coyote welcomes your MONEY, not you as a human being on the same equal level as a good Mormon. By all means, hold your wedding reception there once Proposition 8 is declared unconstitutional. You can get Marjorie to cut the cake!

  12. Jason D
    November 13, 2008

    “saying “my religion made me do it” is not an argument, it’s an excuse for ignorance.”

    It’s more than that, it’s a denial of responsibility.

    We are responsible for the good and the evil we do to our fellow man.

    Would Jesus ignore people’s suffering? Especially those he had made suffer??

  13. Jason D
    November 13, 2008

    She respects our views, but not us.

    Marjorie, like a lot of bigots don’t get that THIS is what they’re saying:

    “My church says you should be stabbed in the back. I believe you should be stabbed in the back. I support people who want to stab you in the back. I gave money to help those people stab you in the back. I voted for stabbing you in the back. It sucks that you got stabbed in the back, but I respect you. Please respect me and my views.”

    And they don’t see how saying “sure, no big deal.” would be complete and total insanity on our part.

  14. craig
    November 13, 2008

    I am appalled that she could be so heartless to contribute to something so separatist, so divisive to the gay community, especially when the majority of her patrons, are gay, is beyond comprehension. Her mea culpa is phony and it’s time for her restaurant to close, forever… A chapter in this evil must stop, and her phony allegiance is proof of it…

  15. Regan DuCasse
    November 13, 2008

    I don’t especially like El Coyote’s food.
    I’ve noticed that changing Marjie’s consciousness is going to be hard if SHE’S NOT THERE.

    She fled quickly after her statement and gave no one an opportunity to talk to her.

    Other venues such as churches and schools are closed to such an idea as actually meeting and dialogue with gay people and their supporters.

    The conservative media is saying the gay people are SILENCING the opposition.
    The truth is, the opposition has gone missing. They aren’t around to speak directly to the very people they have made problems for.

    When a person of faith votes AGAINST the happiness and security of another person. Their ability to function fully as a citizen, person with someone to care for…THAT is not the consciousness of fairness. This is not, again, a difference of opinion, it’s the force of government to exclude people FROM doing what every citizen does and should do.

    She has responsibilities, well, gay folks do too.
    Did she not consider that what she did is a FAR MORE profound betrayal than anything she could do to her church?

    Is THEIR punishment more fearsome than anything the gay community could do to her?

    There will be gay folks who will remain loyal to El C.
    That’s fine.

    But it’s Marjie who fled from facing who she betrayed. And she DID betray a trust.
    And she DOES address gay people like pets.

    My best friend M stood up as best man for a wedding between a once divorced Jewish man, and his Catholic, Mexican American bride.
    They have been friends for years, and M felt himself close to this couple.

    Well, the groom voted YES.
    And that has damaged the trust between them. Probably irreparably.
    M was very hurt, saying S had me stand up at his wedding, but he doesn’t want to see ME have the same chance?!

    Fair question.
    S, for all intents and purposes of reliigous control, wouldn’t have been able to marry HIS bride.
    First, because of their mixed situation and him having a divorce on his record.
    No church or temple would have married them.

    But they ARE legally married in the eyes of the state and world.

    So S’s betrayal was similar to Marjie’s.
    He benefitted from a gay man who he was willing to see reduced to less opportunity than HE had.
    A real friend wouldn’t do that.

    It’s that simple. If Marjie loses her gay ‘friends’ along the way. It’s not because gay people were unreasonable.
    It’s because they know NOW, she’s not the friend she SAYS she is.

    Her ACTIONS spoke louder than her words.

  16. Tim Hulsey
    November 13, 2008

    The important thing is not to let our demands for accountability end with El Coyote.

  17. Alan
    November 13, 2008

    My 2¢ on boycotting gay haunts that chose to Yes the 8 is to:
    1. Identify the place.
    2. Confirm that a donation to Yes was, in fact, made and by someone who runs/owns the place.
    3. Just boycott it indefinitely with NO picketing, no communication, no press release…

    Why?

    Because, if you haven’t figured it out yet, people who voted YES on 8 aren’t what you’d call thinkers. And each and every instance I’ve read, watched on TV, heard in podcasts of a No on 8er plying facts, logic, history, common sense on a Yes on 8er… all you get back from a Yes on 8er is irrational, illogical stonewalling.

    I say less talk, more action. Idenitify the Yes on 8 supporting business, confirm the support, NEVER go there again – let them eat silence and notice the drop in business. And spend your dollar at an establishment on record for supporting gays and voting NO on 8.

  18. Devlin Bach
    November 13, 2008

    Timothy, I meant about holding back your money from El . . . I don’t think protesting is the way to go there.

    Considering Margie’s age, and the fact we live in a terribly homophobic country, and the fact most str8 people really don’t “get” gay sex n relationships and think they are at best, a laughable no brainer, and the fact marriage has been burned into most brains for thousands of years as one man one woman, and there is virtually little to no authentic sex education in this country, we’re doing pretty damn good, slow but good.

  19. Jonathan
    November 13, 2008

    Thanks for sharing your observations Timothy! I’m so conflicted about this one. I love El Coyote! And my experience has always been excellent there. I also grew up in an incredibly religious household where diversity of thought was not allowed and you followed the dictates of the church. In that regard, I can understand the owner’s actions. I also am aware that I patronize many organizations whose owners may donate to causes and organizations that I am opposed to. But it doesn’t make it any easier to digest.

    I do feel that the restaurant has at least made an effort to counter-act what the owner has done. That’s helpful to me. But it still leaves me conflicted!

    j.

  20. Preston Taylot
    November 13, 2008

    Excellent article! Thank you for keeping us informed. I have patronized the Coyote for many years. Not one more cent until I know Marjorie is gone. MONEY TALKS – Boycott all businesses who contributed to Prop H8.

  21. David
    November 13, 2008

    PS Thanks for your insights and updates Timothy, they are greatly appreceiated.

    Jonathan, I know exactly what you mean about being conflicted. But then, when a child steals after being told no several times, sometimes that moves to being spanked. They then learn boundaries instead of continuing with scattered illegal actions, which they then return love to the parents who make them feel like they matter, a good outcome.
    We have had our gay rights stolen from repeated offenders called Adult Children of Religious Discrimination, that react from childish intent. Would you think maybe a good spanking is now in order due to repeated underhanded covert offenses?

  22. Mrs. B
    November 13, 2008

    i don’t think boycotting the restaurant is the best answer to this sorrowful situation. the boycott won’t really affect the owner, but the staff…..and it’s not that easy to find “another job” these days and if an employee has put in time somewhere, the job is most likely a good fit….so, i don’t think we should have the regular working folks suffer.

    remember there are gay people who work there and people who love and cherish gay people who work there. let’s not bring an additional slap in the face to our gay community by taking away their rights and then their livelyhood.

  23. TomATL
    November 14, 2008

    For those who don’t think that not going to the restaurant won’t hurt the owners much… let me put in my 2 cents.

    The restaurant business has horribly low margins. Keep in mind that I don’t have any knowledge of their financial situation, but here’s a brief look at how it may affect them. The national average of pre-tax margin is about 4%, depending on the type of restaurant. That’s before the economy tanked and everyone cut back on discretionary spending. Also, beverages have much higher margins than just about all other foods served. If one out of every 25 patron stops going, especially if he/she consumes more beverages than the average El Coyote patron, it’d be disastrous for the restaurant. Imagine what might happen if virtually all GLBT or GLBT-friendly customers stop going there. If you’re further inclined to believe that the GLBT crowd consumes somewhat more alcoholic beverages than the typical El Coyote patron, then it would further decrease their margin.

    All the fixed costs are still there even if business drops – rent, liquor license, utilities, etc. I’ve known restaurants that have up to 40% of their revenue tied up in their fixed costs.

    There’s the labor cost, both back and front of the house. These can be cut in proportion to the drop in customers, but they don’t serve haute cuisine. Therefore the kitchen staff are not composed of high-priced chefs, and are probably paid little more than minimum wage. The waitstaff? I’d be shocked if they’re paid minimum wage by the restaurant.

    They may be popular enough and have crazy margins that a drop in GLBT patronage would be made up by other people desperate to get seats at the restaurant. But in this economy, and with the segment that El Coyote falls under, I really don’t see any way they can survived as they are if they experience a prolonged 10%+ decrease in business.

  24. Ostiarius
    November 14, 2008

    “…once Proposition 8 is declared unconstitutional.”

    Constitutional amendments can’t be declared unconstitutional. If Ron George and his three stooges so much sniff at the ridiculous “revision not an amendment” argument then it will make it that much easier for us to recall them starting in 2010.

  25. Ostiarius
    November 14, 2008

    “…people who voted YES on 8 aren’t what you’d call thinkers.”

    Please. I have an advanced degree from the UCSD mathematics department and the books on my shelf would make your head asplode. I voted yes on 8 because it was a vote for right reason and judicial restraint. “Fundamental rights” are not those rights which were conjured out of thin air less than six months ago by four judges. So sorry.

  26. Rob Lll
    November 14, 2008

    “I have an advanced degree from the UCSD mathematics department and the books on my shelf would make your head asplode.”

    Gosh! Did they make your head “asplode”?

    If so, it would explain a lot…

  27. Wiliam Bednarz
    November 15, 2008

    The sadness is that people have refused to accept democracy….Prop 8 was voted on DEMOCRACTICALLY -.- the people whichever side you look at won.
    The problem is that We as Americans are a passive people – allowing all sorts of things we disagree with continue -.- Illegal Immigration on the basic that they come here to make a better life for themselves STILL ILLEGAL (last time I looked – PASSIVE).
    I’ve heard people want to call ?.? a GayDay?.? where they don’t go to work – if they were fired they would complain about that -.-
    To Start Boycotts Against A Legal Vote ?.?

  28. Ben in Oakland
    November 15, 2008

    Bednarz– the vote ,may have been legal, but the motivation behind it was sheer bigtory.

  29. Fr. J.
    November 16, 2008

    Ben,

    Any idiot knows that no one can know the motivations of another person. So, going around and telling people that they are bigots just doesnt work.

    I disagree with you. I love you, and I am not a bigot.

  30. Timothy Kincaid
    November 17, 2008

    William,

    It is yet to be determine whether the vote was legal. You see, we don’t live in a “democracy”. We live in a constitutional democratic republic. Mob rule isn’t our form of government.

    52% of the population could not, for example, vote to deny the right to vote to African Americans or the right to assemble to Jews or the right to free speech to women.

    I know that you might not think that sexual orientation is similar to race, religion, or sex, but the Supreme Court of California does.

  31. manaen
    November 18, 2008

    Timothy Kincaid,re your comment: “Mob rule isn’t our form of government.”
    .
    Huh? Then the demonstrations and boycott are to *support* Marjorie’s right to think, vote, and contribute independently of others’ contrary opinions? The traffic was *not* stopped by a mob for a couple hours?
    Those “Mormon Scum” and “Latter-day Hate” banner wavers were protecting our religious freedom *against* mob rule?

  32. Timothy Kincaid
    November 18, 2008

    Manaen,

    We live in a constitutional democratic republic which allows for protest and freedom of speech (that’s the constitutional part). But while demonstrations and boycotts are part of our civil inheritance, they are not our form of government.

  33. Gay Mormon
    November 19, 2008

    Talk about intimidation??? This is the very reason why people don’t take gays seriously. Yes, I am greatly saddened by the stance “my” people have taken with El Coyote and Marjorie.

  34. Cleo J.
    November 23, 2008

    Ah, holy crap. This so totally sucks.
    From 1979 to 1997 I lived in L.A. being a struggling actor/dancer. I lived in the area and El Coyote was a big part of my life and I have nothing but fond memories of the place.
    It’s one of the places I truly missed when I loved to another state.
    At least 3 times a year I come back to L.A. and Coyote is one of the places I always go. I love and miss the food, the crowd, the place…and the margaritas.
    On my fridge I have a postcard of an artist’s rendition of the restaurant.
    When my friend (who worked up the street at Television City and would frequent the Coyote for lunch…a lot) sent me an e-mail telling me that the manager gave money for Prop 8, I felt as if I found out that an old friend that I thought I knew was in the KKK.
    He told me that there was going to be a boycott of the restaurant. To which I agreed.
    Then I thought about it:
    Marge gave $100. Once.
    The restaurant has been SUPPORTING the community for how long???
    Decades. DECADES.
    Plus, the restaurant is giving $5000 to the Community.
    WTF, people. WTF!?!
    If she’s a Mormon in her private life, then that’s her life. That’s her belief. Which I so totally don’t agree with, but I understand that she’s old and with Mormons those beliefs are indoctrinated from birth. She doesn’t want to be turned on by her church community. (And they’re like that. I know Mormons.)
    Look. She gave $100 to a despicable piece of legislature. Her BUSINESS has made up for it in spades and will be donating, like, $5000 to the Community! Which I’m sure doesn’t make her church very happy. Which is really good!
    As much as I hate her private donation, I think her business has made up for it and I’m going to support her business.
    I’m going to support the people who work there and have families to support.
    These are crappy times for people to be out of work and I’m going to support THEM.
    I’m NOT supporting Marjorie.
    I AM supporting her employees.

  35. Marco Luxe
    November 25, 2008

    A boycott of LDS members/tithers is the best way to get the attention of the old white sequestered men at the head of the church. Boycott Utah tourism. Boycott LDS businesses. {anyone have a good list?} The LDS church is thoroughly hierarchical: all issues go to SLC for a decision by prophet/ceo Monson [profit?]. Once he gets poor tithing audits, he’ll have a revelation. The LDS are nice that way; the prophet can change their doctrines & covenants whenever he feels the need. This happened in 1978 with black members. Anyone see a parallel with the Montgomery bus boycott?

  36. alizabeth
    November 29, 2008

    I could be wrong, but I say Vote for yourselves! If you want to give strength to those who vote against your happiness, then patronize them and strengthen their wallets. If you want your rights, then stand up for yourselves, take responsibility and go somewhere else. If you want rights, you have to step up. If someone insults you do you go back for more, because they have good food or drink? Who’s selling out who?

    If you were running for office would you vote for the other candidate? Vote for yourselves. It’s too bad that gays and others who work at El Coyote will have to find other jobs–or you lose a place to party––but what about you and your brothers and sisters rights??? And all those who come after you? Everything has its price. What is the greater good? Standing for yourself is not standing against anyone else. They will take care of themselves. The choice was made to vote against equality. It is each soul’s responsibility to stand for itself–not against others–but for itself. Then we come together as equals.
    As an adult, if you don’t stand for yourself––no one else will!
    Peace,
    –Liz
    xoxox

  37. ask
    August 29, 2009

    Don’t go back to El Coyote. Margie lied, as did the restaurant. She didn’t resign, but is back there if full force as if nothing ever happened. I went tonight, August 29, 2009, and there she was just like before floating around everywhere as phony and insincere as she ever was. I don’t like being lied to. I’m not ever returning, and hope none of you do either.

  38. Northampton House
    September 2, 2010

    This is a terrible misrepresentation of the Church’s side of the story. And it’s not said “Mormon Church,” if you want to sound like a journalist with an ounce of credibility you need to inform the public of the official and true name of the Church “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” the same as you would a company. This is a ridiculous article and I respectfully disagree with you.

  39. Timothy Kincaid
    September 2, 2010

    Norhampton House,

    You’re a bit late to the conversation, however:

    The LDS Church doesn’t have a “side” in the story. This was about Marjorie Christoffersen and El Coyote.

    And, if you have not yet been informed, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Days Saints uses the term “Mormon Church” in self-reference. It is now accepted as a proper term for the church.

  40. Robert
    July 14, 2011

    Timothy Kincaid is an idiot. A self-serving weaking idiot. I can’t believe his article on Marjorie and El Coyote. With friends like Kincaid why does the gay community need enemies.

  41. Robert
    July 14, 2011

    Timothy why don’t you just shut the f*ck up. Who died and made you the judge on how gay people should react to oppression.

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