Unreported Bias in Hoboken

8/3/2010:

Bias exists in Hoboken, even without a police report

When a crime is labeled as a “Bias Incident” (like that Vietnamese man who was assaulted downtown recently) – it tends to draw much outrage from the community, and rightfully so.

However, what about the incidents that don’t get reported to the police? Or those that are afraid, or don’t want to bother complicating their lives with police reports and so on?

Well, one Hoboken411 reader ran into a problem with his sexual orientation – as he claimed that him and his boyfriend were recently harassed at Liberty Bar on 14th Street uptown, and the situation could have turned ugly. He felt that what transpired was inexcusable, and shouldn’t be tolerated at any business in Hoboken. Read on to hear his story…

Verbal harassment at Liberty Bar

“Last Thursday, my boyfriend and I decided to cap off the night (around 11:15-11:30) with a drink at Liberty Bar. As we approached the bar, three men (probably in their mid to late 30s) yelled at us “F*ggots” and some other fun anti-gay slurs. We weren’t even holding hands or anything PDA-ish.

Anyways, I figured it was a bunch of drunken idiots and was going to leave it at that. As we drank, the same guys sat at bar across from us. Still making some of the stupid comments. Then, they began to throw paper, straws and coasters at my boyfriend. We alerted the bartender who asked them to stop. However, he said he couldn’t stop serving them or ask them to leave because, “They are friends with the owner.” This was slightly annoying to me because I am a frequent patron to Liberty, on average going there at least once a week and more frequently during football season. I frequently bring friends. I always tip well and have never made a scene. I was angry these guys weren’t being asked to leave, but I figured they would at least stop bothering us.

A few minutes later, my boyfriend went to the bathroom. He was followed in by the guys, who kicked open the bathroom stall while verbally harassing him. Not sure what they were going to do because thank goodness the bartender and manager went in after them (before I could get there) and pulled them out of the bathroom. It was pretty freaking scary because it was all so irrational.

At this point, I figured they would be kicked out of the bar. Nope. Same reason as before. And the bartender continued to serve them. Finally, we just left.

Overall, this was a pretty mind-blowingly stupid and annoying experience. I have never felt uncomfortable as a gay man in Hoboken (and I’ve lived here for 4 years) until last night. I’m fairly confident that we could have defended ourselves in a fight, but I don’t think I should need to worry about having to fight homophobic idiots when I go out for a drink. The fact that a bartender and manager would not remove patrons who so clearly verbally and physically harassed other patrons because those patrons were “friends” with the owner is shocking, upsetting and offensive.

I figured this might be something your readers might want to know about when choosing a bar in uptown Hoboken. I, for one, generally really like Liberty, the atmosphere, the staff and the food, but unless and until I get an apology from the owner, I will not go back.

Regards,
(Name withheld)”

Have you ever witnessed anyone suffer from a “bias” attack such as this in Hoboken? How would you have handled the situation?

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57 Comments on "Unreported Bias in Hoboken"

animal_lover
Member
animal_lover

Funny also in that Liberty assumes no culpability. She states,”we
must take a stand that we cannot tolerate that type of behavior in our establishment” and “and we will strive to continue to serve the community in a positive way”, but where is the evedence of this stand? Has she sponsored a program for tolerance or for her staff to recognize drunks and throw them out. I don’t know her personally but I wonder if she has a tie to some of the other racial incidents that folks try to back out of w smooth words and no action.

plywood
Member
plywood

It is very nice that the bar stepped up to the plate in comment 47 to apologize for this incident. That having been said, who wrote the apology attributed to the patron, Eddie Haskell? C’mon.

animal_lover
Member
animal_lover

What kind of person apologozes behind the apron of the owner of Liberty? The apology also revokes itself by saying they have never behaved that way before, it was due to drunkenness and nothing malicious was meant by the harassment.

Your poor behavior is behavior own responsibility not the owner or the victim or the rest of this town.

wiskeytango1
Member
wiskeytango1

im a stupid bias bnr ..usaahos become the home of the speical interest an doupble standeard;if we lie to congress its felony if we lie to them its politics.if a silly comment is said by a causation its bias n raciest but if a minorith says same it sthier 1st ammendmemt
riights/Againwe have porno on the intenet and tv but we dare not put a nativity sceme in a public park…forget the city ..a few kids die each day for scum buckets time to semd em home…,,we all pay tax u shims u just paid for another miilitary tjhat ;pst tjeor ;oves in a scum lamd wisen u p hobokennites ..its all ovdr[quote comment=”195733″]What kind of person apologozes behind the apron of the owner of Liberty? The apology also revokes itself by saying they have never behaved that way before, it was due to drunkenness and nothing malicious was meant by the harassment. Your poor behavior is behavior own responsibility not the owner or the victim or the rest of this town.[/quote]

Easy-E
Member

wwhystuyipas dsgfio[ sppepop[23434 fdsofjaaojf;af eh? joiioijdopi JKOPJPOj 421324!!! aewI-09 weroipurq woihpsdoijh!![quote comment=”195738″]im a stupid bias bnr ..usaahos become the home of the speical interest an doupble standeard;if we lie to congress its felony if we lie to them its politics.if a silly comment is said by a causation its bias n raciest but if a minorith says same it sthier 1st ammendmemt
riights/Againwe have porno on the intenet and tv but we dare not put a nativity sceme in a public park…forget the city ..a few kids die each day for scum buckets time to semd em home…,,we all pay tax u shims u just paid for another miilitary tjhat ;pst tjeor ;oves in a scum lamd wisen u p hobokennites ..its all ovdr

[/quote]

LibertyBar
Member
LibertyBar
The Liberty Bar & Grill would like to extend our sincere apology for anyone who was personally offended by the article that was released on Hoboken 411. We value all our patrons and always promote a peaceful and congenial establishment. We understand that everyone’s opinions differ, but when someone is directly targeted because of their sexual preference, we must take a stand that we cannot tolerate that type of behavior in our establishment. We also understand that people make mistakes in life, some which they often regret. That being said, the person who has offended the gay couple has released this statement: “I am writing to apologize for my actions last Thursday night. I am so completely sorry, and feel horrible for what I said to those two men. It was completely wrong for me to do. Coming from a family with a gay person in it makes this even worse, that is not how I was brought up.I never acted like that in my life, I had a little too much to drink. I hope you can accept and realize that my apology is indeed sincere and nothing malicious was meant by what I did, I just acted like a complete idiot, and im terribly sorry for that. My actions were solely my responsibility, and the owner and staff of the Liberty Bar should not be held responsible for the consequences of my actions.” The Liberty Bar & Grill has acted as a facilitator to the event that took… Read more »
lhoward222
Member
lhoward222
Dawn, “The Liberty Bar & Grill would like to extend our sincere apology for anyone who was personally offended by the article that was released on Hoboken 411.” No one was offended by the article. Posters were offended by your staff’s inability to handle and diffuse the situation. “We understand that everyone’s opinions differ, but when someone is directly targeted because of their sexual preference, we must take a stand that we cannot tolerate that type of behavior in our establishment.” I imagine you meant any bias based on race, gender, sexual preference, and disabilities too, right? “We also understand that people make mistakes in life, some which they often regret.” Then you should train your staff to cut off the instigator, call him/her a cab, and escort him/her to the curb and accompany them while waiting for transport. That way unforgivable mistakes are less likely to happen. I’VE BEEN IN YOUR BAR SEEING THIS BEHAVIOR MORE THAN ONCE IN THE PAST. The last time stands out in mind because I was on a date with a guy who does not live in Hoboken. I was horribly embarrassed (because Liberty was my suggestion) by the cat-calls, meant-to-be-heard comments directed to a gay couple at the bar. Asked the gal-bartender to get it under control. She did not make an intervention. So we paid tab quickly and left while being sure the jackasses heard me say to the couple, “don’t let those assholes intimidate you.” Haven’t been back to Liberty since… Read more »
Easy-E
Member
“I am writing to apologize for my actions last Thursday night. I am so completely sorry, and feel horrible…” Can you imagine having to face a friend if you did something like that in their bar? Potentially effecting their reputation and at least a little business? Man, I hope that he didn’t ever get free drinks, because that’s some epic, Ben Stiller grade embarrassment there. The funniest part about this is that he had to write an essay as punishment.[quote comment=”195580″]The Liberty Bar & Grill would like to extend our sincere apology for anyone who was personally offended by the article that was released on Hoboken 411.We value all our patrons and always promote a peaceful and congenial establishment.We understand that everyone’s opinions differ, but when someone is directly targeted because of their sexual preference, we must take a stand that we cannot tolerate that type of behavior in our establishment. We also understand that people make mistakes in life, some which they often regret. That being said, the person who has offended the gay couple has released this statement:“I am writing to apologize for my actions last Thursday night. I am so completely sorry, and feel horrible for what I said to those two men. It was completely wrong for me to do. Coming from a family with a gay person in it makes this even worse, that is not how I was brought up.I never acted like that in my life, I had a little too much to… Read more »
Journey
Member
Journey
Hello Dawn Kaplan, I hope you speak to your staff about serving people that have clearly had too much. Despite how this person’s horrible behavior, a person who admits they had too much to drink, your server continued to serve them. What if he left your bar and got into a DWI accident?[quote comment=”195580″]The Liberty Bar & Grill would like to extend our sincere apology for anyone who was personally offended by the article that was released on Hoboken 411.We value all our patrons and always promote a peaceful and congenial establishment.We understand that everyone’s opinions differ, but when someone is directly targeted because of their sexual preference, we must take a stand that we cannot tolerate that type of behavior in our establishment. We also understand that people make mistakes in life, some which they often regret. That being said, the person who has offended the gay couple has released this statement:“I am writing to apologize for my actions last Thursday night. I am so completely sorry, and feel horrible for what I said to those two men. It was completely wrong for me to do. Coming from a family with a gay person in it makes this even worse, that is not how I was brought up.I never acted like that in my life, I had a little too much to drink. I hope you can accept and realize that my apology is indeed sincere and nothing malicious was meant by what I did, I just acted like… Read more »
ntableman
Member
ntableman

I know of many incidents of people harassing gay’s and lesbians’ in Hoboken. I have seen it on the PATH, in bars, and on the street. My observation is that the harassers tend NOT to be from Hoboken. So I wonder if these guys were from around here or in the less enlightened hinterlands.

It is a shame to read about this because we somehow lost our way from “live and let live” that really is at the heart of this nation’s founding ideals.

I add this to my long list of reasons that I stopped going to Liberty.

Study after study shows that the larger the homophobia the higher rate of suppressed homosexuality. Perhaps that is why they followed the guy into the bathroom? 😉

whineanddineinhob
Member
whineanddineinhob

What might solve this problem is if reported incidents to the police are also filed with the ABC in the City and even the state. If there can’t be a complete “Zero” tolerance, then any repeated offenders (bartenders or owners) would have their liquor license or bar card revoked or suspended. [quote comment=”195500″]I know of many incidents of people harassing gay’s and lesbians’ in Hoboken. I have seen it on the PATH, in bars, and on the street. My observation is that the harassers tend NOT to be from Hoboken. So I wonder if these guys were from around here or in the less enlightened hinterlands.It is a shame to read about this because we somehow lost our way from “live and let live” that really is at the heart of this nation’s founding ideals.I add this to my long list of reasons that I stopped going to Liberty.Study after study shows that the larger the homophobia the higher rate of suppressed homosexuality. Perhaps that is why they followed the guy into the bathroom? [/quote]

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