The month of June, as noted in a previous inhalton article, is widely recognized as Pride Month – a month that celebrates the LGBTQ2+ community and commemorates the Stonewall riots in New York City. During the riots, according to a recent CBC article, police raided Stonewall Inn – a gay bar in Greenwich Village, in 1969, and violent demonstrations broke out.
And on June 17, 2019, Kelly’s Bake Shoppe – a popular bakery in Burlington – posted a photo on their Instagram page announcing that they would be selling a pride cupcake.
“Our famous pride cupcakes are available today through June 27th to celebrate pride,” reads the company’s Instagram post. “And as always, all of the profits of these beautiful cupcakes will be going to @rainbowrailroad, a wonderful organization that helps LGBTQ individuals escape violence and persecution in their home countries.”
In a previous inhalton article, it was noted that the announcement was not well received by everyone. However, following the publication of the article, two individuals reached out to inhalton saying that Kelly’s only listed a charity after being questioned about it.
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The situation quickly escalated.
Kelly’s Bake Shoppe’s initial post currently has close to 400 comments, and over 1,000 likes.
One person who reached out said that the bake shop “completely ignored the questions” being asked, and made a comment about the Raptors winning.
Another individual who reached out to inhalton, Carly, who does not wish to disclose her last name, commented on why she thought it was an issue that a charity was not not initially listed.
“Rainbow capitalism (the marketization of LGBTQIA+ culture and the exploitation of the queer community by capitalist businesses for the purpose of profit rather than for genuine support of the queer community) is a huge issue right now,” Carly said in an email to inhalton.com. “Companies, big or small, international or local, love to cash in on pride month. The problem is, queer people are literally being killed, our rights [are] constantly under threat, even locally. The Hamilton pride celebration was met with violent right-wing protestors. I know of several people this past weekend at Toronto pride who were harassed. This happens all year round. I understand businesses who want to support Pride and what it stands for, but profiting off of queer people isn’t the way to do it. Any money raised should go to charities working to fight the oppression we face.”
“The situation could have been handled with so much less stress and drama had they just issued a statement right from the get-go saying something like they intended to donate but forgot to mention to which organization, and it has now been added to the post,” Carly continued. “Instead they chose to further antagonize the community they claim to support and love.”
Last week, Inhalton reached out to Kelly’s for a comment regarding the situation. The bakery has not yet replied.
However, Kelly’s has since issued a public apology, on Instagram, regarding the initial post.
“Our intention was never to hurt or offend those who have fought towards creating and supporting an authentic and accepting space within the LGBTQ2S+ community,” reads the post. “We offer our heartfelt apologies for any hurt which we may have caused, and wish to accept ownership in where we were wrong.”
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Our intention was never to hurt or offend those who have fought towards creating and supporting an authentic and accepting space within the LGBTQ2S+ community. We offer our heartfelt apologies for any hurt which we may have caused, and wish to accept ownership in where we were wrong.⠀⠀To the LGBTQ2S+ community we wish to extend a genuine expression of love and care towards you as individuals. You deserve to be heard and we hope that you will allow us to be aligned with you in creating a society which is free from adversity and discrimination. This is an initiative which fundamentally matters to us, and so do you.⠀⠀We are very excited to be able to donate the profits of our #Pride cupcakes to @rainbowrailroad an organization which helps individuals within the LGBTQ2S+ community find a path to safety to start a new life – free from persecution.⠀⠀With much love, Kelly + Erinn ⠀XO⠀
Photo is courtesy of Google Maps.