TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — One blue collar business owner’s crass opinion on “Pride” month triggered both outrage and support over the weekend.
The street-facing sign outside Rick’s Repair Shop in Tallahassee used a slur against homosexuals to express the owner’s frustration with the values of mainstream American culture.
This kind of bigotry should have no place in our Tallahassee community. It is an embarrassment and the people at Rick’s Repair Shop should be ashamed of their foolish, hurtful, and wrong words. pic.twitter.com/vTPg1Md2A8— Jackson Peel (@JaxPeel) May 29, 2023
The tweet from Jackson Peel, communications director for the Florida House Democrats, had racked up just under 900,000 views as of Tuesday afternoon.
Many popular responses to the tweet praised owner Rick Hughes’ candor.
“That's prolly the most honest and good sign in a while,” wrote one user.
“Thank you, I’ve been looking for a good repair shop,” one man quipped back to Peel’s caption denouncing the “bigotry.”
Several users pointed out that May is military appreciation month. Others shared Peel’s rage over the politically incorrect view and blew up the shop’s Yelp page with bad reviews. Many of the reviews included pictures of the rainbow-colored “tolerance” flag and some added images of famous gay men like the Village People.
One LGBTQ activist tweeted the address of the shop with an indirect call for violence, writing: “Only posting their address in case you want to get your car fixed and for no nefarious reason at all. Also did y’all know Goodwill has bats and golf clubs for under $5? (Unrelated) Wild.”
Hughes could not be reached for comment.
A popular conservative account summarized the ordeal by pointing out the unique nature of the modern social media environment, writing: “>rural mechanic puts his (based) opinion on road side sign seen by dozens of passersby >soy urbanite posts it to twitter where half a million people see it >‘heh, I sure showed that bigot.’”