A gay couple in Ireland is saying that a Dublin restaurant kicked them out midway through their anniversary dinner because nearby customers couldn’t stomach same-sex hand-holding. One of them wrote an angry, anonymous letter, which was published in the Irish magazine GCN:
My partner and I were in a Dublin city centre restaurant celebrating our second anniversary and we were being physically tactile with each other. Not kissing the faces of each other or anything, but holding hands and looking into each other’s eyes. A waiter came to our table and told us that customers at another table were complaining about us. He suggested that we stop showing each other physical affection.
We asked to see a manager, who said something similar, adding that he had no problem with gay people. When we said we had every right to show each other affection, the manager said that it was unfortunate that other customers were uncomfortable, and suggested that we leave. He told us we wouldn’t be charged for our meal.
The writer adds that as he and his partner were headed toward the door, a woman at a different table “said the word ‘disgusting.’” The incident is definitely awful as described, but because of the nature of the claim — being anonymous and not fact-checked — other journalists and readers have shown a little reluctance in buying it wholesale until more facts come out:
The writer says that they both felt humiliated by the whole thing, and pretty disappointed in Ireland, too: “We like to think of Ireland as a place where gay people are fully accepted and respected, especially since the landslide passing of the same-sex marriage referendum, but if my experience last week is anything to go by, this is still a surface image.”