(CBS Seattle) — Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello recently performed at Seattle’s El Corazon — but it’s what he did after his club show that is pinning a popular restaurant in Belltown against Morello loyalists.
Following the benefit show, Morello and his entourage ventured to the 24-hour diner, the 5 Point Cafe. Because the small restaurant was understaffed and overflowing with customers, Morello was denied entry at roughly 1 am.
According to owner Dave Meinert, the doorman had been told by the waitstaff that the restaurant was at capacity, and that he was not to let anyone else in. Morello and his companions approached the doorman looking for a table, and became “pushy” when they were told the cafe was at capacity. After a five-minute confrontation, Morello left — but not without publicly chastising the restaurant on Twitter after his experience. The guitarist called the establishment “super rude” and “anti-worker.”
The 5 Point Cafe posted a response via Facebook on September 27th:
“For the record Tom Morello – The 5 Point is totally pro-worker. We try to pay more than any other small restaurant, and on top of the higher pay, we offer health insurance, paid sick days, paid time off, retirement and profit share. Sorry if you had an issue with our staff, but typically our staff is awesome, and when they are not, it’s usually a reflection of the customer.”
“We treat everyone the same,” said Meinert, stressing that celebrity status means little when it comes to seating patrons. “The way you treat our staff is the way you get treated. They kept trying to say ‘doesn’t your owner like Rage Against The Machine?’ They kept pushing. For their part, it was after a show, but they should’ve just taken ‘no’ for an answer, or waited ten or fifteen minutes to be seated.”
Meinert noted that the cafe has had to turn people away in the past when at capacity, and understands that people can be frustrated with the experience. According to Meinert, Morello took it too far when he started insinuating that the doorman was being racist.
“I agree with Tom on a lot of things,” said Meinert. “And, I know there’s a conversation to be had on how the restaurant industry treats its employees. All that said, I appreciate the work that Tom does, and I think we should move beyond this and focus on the things he’s fighting for.”
(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)