This happened in a Dave & Buster’s restaurant last Saturday in Kentwood, MI, but corporate headquarters in Dallas has confirmed the thing and said it’s corporate-wide policy. Two members of the Sons of The American Legion, wearing their SAL vests, and their wives entered the restaurant hoping for a nice dinner. Management stopped them and told the men to turn their vests inside out. The men and their wives chose to leave, instead of suffering the insult. Victor Murdock, Assistant Director of American Legion Post 179 in Grandville, MI, and one of the men, told 24 Hour News 8,
It’s just a good group of guys that want to raise awareness for PTSD, fallen veterans, for the ones that didn’t come back, even for those who did come back and are dealing with situations they never got over.
The vest is one way Murdock and other members convey their message. After all, they say, there are few things that define American pride more than the flag and the eagle featured on the vest.
“It says we believe in America. We believe in our troops. We support our veterans,” Murdock said.
The full statement, from April Spearman, Dave & Buster’s Vice corporate President for Marketing:
We are extremely grateful to all of our active military members and veterans and are honored to have them as valued guests in any of our locations.
Our dress code, which prohibits evidence of gang affiliation, is in place to ensure that everyone is able to enjoy themselves in a fun and safe environment. Though we understand that the American Legion promotes a positive mission, for consistency reasons we cannot allow motorcycle jackets displaying patches or rockers. Our policies are in no way meant to be disrespectful and we apologize for any frustration this may have caused.
In addition, please know that this group was not asked to leave, but to simply turn their jackets inside out. Again, we apologize for any misunderstanding.
Because this affiliate of the American Legion is equivalent to a gang. Notice, too, that last bit of disingenuousity. No, the four were not asked to leave. They were just told to disrespect everything they stood for.
Absent a turnover in management, Dave & Buster’s has lost my business.