Lesbian Couple Holds PDA Demo at Tastee Diner

Couple claims they were tossed from diner for holding each other

By Matthew Stabley
|  Thursday, Aug 20, 2009  |  Updated 8:36 AM EDT
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Lesbian Couple Holds PDA Demonstration at Tastee Diner

NBCWashington.com

Aiyi-nah Ford and Torian Brown

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Lesbian Couple Holds PDA Demonstration at Tastee Diner

Same-sex couples head to the Tastee Diner in droves to protest a lesbian couple being asked to leave for displaying their affection.
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SILVER SPRING, Md. -- Alleging sexual preference discrimination, a lesbian couple organized a demonstration at the Tastee Diner in Silver Spring Wednesday.

Aiyi-nah Ford and Torian Brown said they were tossed from Tastee at about 2 a.m. Aug. 12 for holding each other -- not even kissing -- in front of the counter as a straight couple was making out nearby with no complaints from management, News4's Michael Flynn reported.

"We were just like talking and holding each other, and the next thing you know, the manager comes over and he asks us to leave," Brown said.

"Their exact words were, 'This is a family establishment, and people are trying to eat,' as though interaction between Torian and I was something to the effect of 'Fear Factor,' if you've ever watched that show," Ford said.

The restaurant's manager, Lisa Wilkes, whose family owns the well-known eatery, countered that the couple went further than innocent cuddling. They were touching each other inappropriately, she said.

"The Tastee Diner is a family restaurant, and it doesn't matter if you're straight or if you're gay," Wilkes said. "If you start going beyond the point of kissing and things start to get a little X-rated, we're going to ask you to stop."

Ford, who is a blog radio host, urged same-sex couples to go to the diner and protest with tame public displays of affection, Flynn reported.

Ford and Brown want an apology, but regardless, they don't plan to return to the diner.

"So something needs to be done," Ford said. "People need to know that there is a way that you treat every individual, regardless of race, religion, creed or sexual orientation."

The owner plans to release surveillance video showing the couple's inappropriate behavior on Thursday.

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