So the point of public accommodation laws was supposed to be that they would prevent widespread discrimination against people with certain characteristics (race, gender, religion) that had nothing to do with the services being provided, correct? To stop restaurants from refusing to seat black customers or hotels from letting single women rent rooms.
But we have yet another reminder that once a law is passed, the general public has little control over how it is enforced. John Interval, the owner of Barbiere barber shop in Washington, Pennsylvania found out the hard way. You think barber shops are designed to serve the needs of male clients and probably aren't even set up to tackle women's hair? What sort of bigot are you? Courtesy of KDKA in Pittsburgh:
From the rugged décor to the macho atmosphere, it's a place where guys can unwind with a complimentary cocktail or enjoy a cold beer.
"[I] come here, talk sports, guy talk. A great place to get away after a hard day's work, get a haircut and have a beer," said client Robert Craig.
Now, the business is at the center of a heated debate after owner John Interval was fined $750 for refusing to cut a woman's hair.
She filed an action with the state's Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs.
Given the crazy fines in the wedding cake wars, he should probably be glad it was only $750. He said he didn't even know he had to also serve women because it's probably not anything that has ever come up before and probably never will again. He points out that he doesn't even have the tools to serve women. Doesn't matter:
"You know, I'm not opposed to doing women's hair," he explained. "Just not in this shop. I don't even have [the equipment] to do women's hair. I want to open a shop to cater to them and no men will be allowed there. They'll have all the champagne and mimosas they want, and that'll be on the house."
Then he'll get fined for not offering them the same beer he's offering the men.