The Black Lives Matter (BLM) Greater New York Chapter is all set to protest outside a Manhattan restaurant to support the Black women accused of attacking a hostess who demanded that they show proof of a COVID-19 vaccination before they can enter the restaurant.
The group, along with its founder, has been planning to stage a protest outside Carmine’s Italian restaurant in the Upper West Side. Prior to the scheduled protest, they actively promoted the hashtags #CancelCarmines and #ProtectBlackWomen to support the three Black female tourists from Texas who were accused of assaulting the 24-year-old hostess on Thursday, Sept. 16, Fox News reported.
According to reports, Kaeita Nkeenge Rankin, 44, Tyonnie Keshay Rankin, 21, and Sally Rechelle Lewis, 49, were arrested and charged with assault and criminal mischief.
On Saturday, the lawyers from both the restaurant and the women’s side clarified that the three women had provided proof of vaccinations. They were reportedly already seated inside when the altercation began after two men who joined the women failed to provide proof of vaccination.
According to Justin Moore, the lawyer who represents Nkeenge Rankin, the hostess “used a racial slur and also assaulted the women.” He called the altercation “mutual combat.”
Meanwhile, Carmine’s management has already denied that race discrimination played any factor in the incident.
The full statement from Carmine says, “Three of our hosts who are respectively Black, Latinx, and Asian American women did their best to welcome a large party while enforcing New York’s vaccination requirement for indoor dining. We require that every guest show evidence of vaccination to eat inside. Unfortunately, some male members of the party were unable to provide vaccination proof and so could not enter the restaurant. Three female guests in the party who had shown proof of vaccination and been welcomed into the restaurant without issue then launched an entirely unprovoked, brutal attack on our hosts, one of whom continues to suffer from a concussion.”
“None of the attackers offered any reason for their attack. None of the hosts – all of whom are people of color – uttered a racial slur,” the statement continued.
“None of the attackers mentioned anything about race to our managers, staff, or the police who arrested them, and the Texas criminal defense lawyer’s false assertion otherwise is a deeply cynical ploy to try to excuse wanton violence,” it added.