A small cafe in rural west Wales has hit back at haters ranting about a Black Lives Matter poster in its window with a brilliant response.
Catrin Jones, owner of Crwst in Cardigan, refused to bow to pressure from a “small minority” who said they were “offended” and “disgusted” by the small sign.
Instead she posted a strongly worded retort on Facebook, saying: “Black Lives Matter. The poster WILL remain in the window as we are proud supporters of this movement. The sooner people educate themselves, the better.”
She and husband Osian put a poster up in their cafe two weeks ago in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. But there was a backlash on social media as people commented saying: “All lives matter. Today it’s even in Welsh.”
Mrs Jones’ response added: “What an embarrassing night for Cardigan. Black Lives Matter doesn’t discredit any other group, it brings awareness to the group that needs the attention now.
“It’s not All Lives Matter until black lives matter too. Be on the right side of history.”
Mrs Jones, 27, said the couple, who set up their cafe and bakery from scratch four years ago, wanted to show their support for the movement and they actively stand for everything Black Lives Matters promotes.
She said: “We put it in the window where we knew it would get quite a lot of attention. We just wanted to make the people of Cardigan think a bit more about it and educate themselves a bit more about what’s going on in the world right now, because we feel people in rural areas might not have the same outlook on things like that.
“Multi-culturalism isn’t the norm around here. I just wanted to get it up so that anyone who was sitting on the fence who wasn’t quite sure what to think about it to show that we support it, have a look into it.
“It was really just to raise awareness- that was the whole point.”
The young couple are both from Cardigan and moved back to the rural town after spending several years working and living in Cardiff. Last year, they won the National Rural Business Award for Best Rural Start-Up.
They did not expect such a hostile response to their poster, which Mrs Jones believed was from a minority.
Mrs Jones also appealed to her hometown in her post, asking: “Aberteifi – When there has been a crisis, we are known to pull together as a community and rally around that particular group. Look at the money we have raised for the NHS during lockdown. Look at the support local and vulnerable people received during lockdown.”
She added: “We saw there had been a bit of a reaction on Facebook because someone had put up a post saying ‘Shouldn’t this say all lives matter?’ and then lots of people agreed and said they weren’t going to come to the cafe because of it.
“It shows that people were thinking it and it just took one person to say something and then everyone jumped on it saying ‘Yes we agree, it should say all lives matter’.
“We didn’t mean to trigger people or create any offence, but we are prepared to have uncomfortable conversations with people on the subject we know this what creates change. We knew there might be some people in the community who might not quite agree with it, but we didn’t realise it would kick off in that way.”
Yet the support they have also received has been “overwhelming” and “restored their faith in people”, she added.
“Creating a conversation like this is good because it keeps the movement at the forefront of people’s minds and keeps the conversation going about it, which we do believe is a good thing. That’s why we are keeping it up, just to show people that we do support it.”