A popular donut shop in Tulsa, Oklahoma was firebombed by an extremist this week. We’ll just let that sink in a second. A donut shop. Firebombed. And it’s actually the second act of vandalism perpetrated against the small business after it hosted an art show featuring drag queens last month.
Police say an unidentified person wearing a mask, black clothing, and a red hat could be seen on security cameras smashing the glass front door of The Donut Hole with a baseball bat. They then threw what was essentially a Molotov cocktail into the building (pictured in inset, above).
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The Tulsa Fire Department was called to the scene to put out the fire. Lieutenant Tim Ingram told News On 6 about the firebomb:
“It’s got a chemical of some kind in it that is meant to spread fire quickly and cause a great potential damage.”
According to Tulsa World, the individual responsible for the attack could be seen on video leaving a note “on a neighboring business,” as well. That note contained “Bible verses and hateful rhetoric,” according to the newspaper. You know, because the Bible definitely has a passage that says “firebomb thy neighbor”…
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Sadly, as scary as this situation was, this isn’t the first time this has happened in the last few weeks. Late on October 15, The Donut Hole’s front doors were smashed and a front window destroyed by a vandal. Hours before that, the small business had hosted an art event called The Queens Dirty Dozen, which was put on by local drag queens.
In a Facebook post recounting the initial October event and its ugly aftermath, the donut biz wrote:
“Last night we had the privilege of being able to be a part of the vision of The Queens Dirty Dozen; An art installation donut shop ran by drag queens. The event was an enormous success with over 500 guests attending, and an overwhelming reaction of laughing, jokes, fun and good times were had by all.”
They continued with details about “a reaction of hate” coming from somebody who did not take kindly to the presence of drag queens:
“Unfortunately, there was also a reaction of hate and we were the victim of somebodies malicious acts. But in ones attempt to rain on our parade, the community answered by showing overwhelming support.”
So scary. And now, just two weeks later, things appear to have escalated with the Molotov cocktail. The terrifying situation appears to be getting worse as more and more extremists get incited to violence by the hateful rhetoric against anything LGBT.
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After the first incident, a supporter set up a GoFundMe page to help owner Sarah Swain (pictured above, in front of her vandalized shop) with clean-up and repairs. In that fundraiser from mid-October, the initial incident was explained in more detail:
“Recently, after opening her shop to an event promoting love and equality she was vandalized. Her front doors and windows were smashed and her register and electronic equipment stolen. Sarah is a small business owner and this type of disruption can be hard for a small business to recover. She’s going to need community help to rally behind her to get her shop back open.”
Now, with the second act of vandalism happening this week, supporters are doubling down on backing Swain and The Donut Hole. As of Friday morning, the GoFundMe had received new life with more than $24,000 donated for repairs. You can visit the shop’s GoFundMe page HERE.
That’s an amazing and inspiring response. We’re just horrified and saddened that The Donut Hole experienced this hateful behavior twice. Once is far too much! Ugh!
Here is more on the Tulsa Fire Department’s investigation into the Molotov cocktail incident this week:
Just… wow. Why are people so awful?
[Image via News On 6/YouTube/GoFundMe]