Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-12-08



Activists protest Spyners Pub over owner's racist post, past comments
by Carrie Maxwell, Windy City Times

This article shared 6846 times since Fri Jun 5, 2020
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Over 100 Spyners Pub patrons and community members gathered June 4 in front of the pub, 4623 N. Western Ave., to protest against owner and general manager Maureen Sullivan's racist Facebook posts and past racist comments toward numerous bar patrons.

Sullivan, who deleted the racist posts, also blocked access to her Facebook page on the evening of June 3. When this publication checked the page June 4, her renovations ( where the screenshot of her original deleted racist post was shared by a number of people ) and apology posts were deleted.

The Facebook posts were filled with hundreds of comments from patrons and members of the public who called for a boycott, with some speaking about the racist comments they said they received in her pub.

This protest was one of many taking place worldwide in support of #BlackLivesMatter in recent days with attendees, who were mostly white, calling for Sullivan's pub to have its license revoked and be shut down.

For two hours, protestors peacefully stood at all four corners of the intersection of Western and Eastwood avenues, displaying signs while chanting slogans as most of the cars that passed by honked and cheered them along.

Chants included "No justice, no peace," "Don't support Spyners," "Hey, hey, they racists cops have got to go," "George Floyd, say his name" and "Breonna Taylor, say her name."

During the protest, Heart of Lincoln Square Neighbors Association Co-Founder and Outreach Committee Head Paige Worthy told Windy City Times, "This time—when we are all a little raw from shelter-in-place and then the protests started happening—this, more than any other time, people's true colors have started coming out.

"What could have just been a frustration spiraled into a racist tirade by Maureen that got spread around. She got caught, wrote a fake apology and thought she would get off scot-free. The community here does not tolerate this kind of behavior or beliefs. I am really heartened that so many folks from our community and other neighborhoods came out to join this protest and say this is not okay."

Heidi and Cindy Schuman, who are raising two Black children, were also at the protest.

"As a community we are happy to be out here together to stand up against hate," Heidi told Windy City Times. "We have supported this bar for years and years and to not only see the words she wrote that she copied and share with another person and then sent out on her Facebook page and then hearing stories from our close friends who have actually experienced hate and racism in this bar from her is very upsetting.

"The fact that we did not hear these stories until now, her asking people of color to leave the bar because she did not want their kind there or that they were stealing tips off the bar just because of the color of their skin is terrible. We are here to make a stand and say that her words and actions are not okay."

"It is disheartening and sad that she is a gay lady who made that racist statement saying they are going to loot and destroy property and that Black people are animals," said Cindy. "What does that say for my how she perceives my family?

"I am sad that I did not know that racism was going on here and that my Black friends could not tell me what happened to them here. Also, the fact that she has sponsored many of my CMSA teams and there are trophies inside her bar with my team names on them makes me angry because of the message that sends."

Another protestor, Lori ( who asked that her last name not be used ), told this publication, "On Mardi Gras this year, I was hanging out with some new friends at the bar and Maureen's partner came up out of nowhere and said 'Get the eff out of here. I'm sick of people coming up to me and complaining about you,' and at that point I was, like, 'I just moved here this past September, so what?'" She said made no sense.

"Another day, I was walking from the 7-Eleven back home. I crossed the street and ran into a friend outside the bar when Maureen's partner came out and said, 'You need to get the eff out of here; I am going to call the cops on you.' I told her, 'This is a public sidewalk and you cannot do that.' She said, 'You do not need to be here' and called me names, so I exchanged names as well. It was a very infuriating moment and I remember her saying I was loitering for cigarettes but I had literally just come from the 7-Eleven with cigarettes and wine in my bag. As a Black bisexual woman, I felt racially profiled and targeted, and it was infuriating."

In a moving moment near the end of the protest, Andersonville resident Nic Lawson, called on participants to sit down in silence with their hands raised for eight minutes and 46 seconds—the amount of time white now-former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin had his knee on Floyd's neck. Chauvin has since been charged with second-degree murder, and three other officers have also been charged.

Lawson—who said she is both Native American and Black but passes as white—called on everyone to contact Ald. Matt Martin ( 47th Ward ), who she said did not respond to her queries about this situation, and demand action on his part. She also told the white members of the crowd they had blinders on due to their privilege. Lawson called on them to chant "Black Lives Matter," "No Justice No Peace" and reminded them that Taylor's birthday would have been June 5, and to say her and Floyd's names.

Additionally, Lawson said this injustice is white people's fault and it is incumbent on them to educate their fellow white people about racial justice.

Lawson asked who in the crowd was LGBT; many people clapped in the affirmative. Lawson then said they owe their freedom to love to Black and Brown trans women who led the fight for LGBT liberation.

As Lawson was talking, a young Black person said "I deserve to be here," eliciting cheers from the crowd. He also told the crowd that he appreciated everyone coming out in support of his community.

Throughout the protest, six Chicago Police officers stood along the side of the 7-Eleven across the street and two Chicago Police Department vehicles ( one featuring the rainbow Pride flag colors ) were parked on Western Ave. under the nearby Brown Line L stop.

All protestors practiced social distancing and wore masks due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Water and snacks were also provided by a few protestors.

See and .

See for information on continuing actions.

This article shared 6846 times since Fri Jun 5, 2020
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Gay News

ICYMI: NCAA Facilitator quits in protest of NCAA's failure to protect trans athletes
-- From a press release - WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Dorian Rhea Debussy, Ph.D. (they/them), one of 54 facilitators in the NCAA Division III LGBTQ OneTeam program, resigned in protest of recent actions the NCAA has taken, including a new policy around ...

Gay News

PASSAGES Jeffrey Wayne ("Jef") Morgan
Jeffrey Wayne "Jef" Morgan, of Chicago's West Rogers Park neighborhood, passed away unexpectedly from a heart attack while shoveling snow on Jan. 2. He was 58. Jef was the well-loved manager at Little Jim's on ...

Gay News

"Safe Schools For All" to help students take action against bullying
--From a press release - WASHINGTON — As schools and school districts across the country face hostile protests of LGBTQI+ inclusive education, students who are experiencing discrimination, bullying and harassment based on their sexual orientation ...

Gay News

Trans employees plan Oct. 20 walkout at Netflix [UPDATE]
Netflix's trans employee resource group is planning a company-wide walkout Wed., Oct. 20, to protest statements made by co-CEO Ted Sarandos regarding Dave Chappelle's latest comedy special The Closer, according to The Verge. "Trans Lives Matter. ...

Gay News

Texans protest anti-trans youth measures at capitol in Austin
GLAAD and Equality Texas issued a release highlighting a week of protest at the Texas state capitol in Austin—where measures targeting transgender children are being considered during the legislature's third special session of the year. Three ...

Gay News

Pro-choice rally takes place in the Loop
On Sept. 27—the first day of the new U.S. Supreme Court session—various women's- and reproductive-rights groups held a rally in Federal Plaza in the Loop. Planned Parenthood of Illinois Jennifer Welch said she wanted Americans to ...

Gay News

Defend Abortion Access marches/rallies planned across Illinois Oct. 2
--From a press release - CHICAGO — A coalition of more than 20 progressive organizations, supporters, and providers of reproductive health care are holding "Defend Abortion Access" events across Illinois on Saturday, October 2, in response to the Texas abortion ban ...

Gay News

'Andersonville Homecoming' Sept. 24-26; line-up, vendors, safety protocols announced
--From a press release - CHICAGO (Sept. 15, 2021) — The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce (ACC) is pleased to announce the full entertainment line-up and vendors for Andersonville Homecoming--a three-night, two-day outdoor festival featuring ...

Gay News

Next OUTspoken show Sept. 7
An OUTspoken Storytelling Night taking place Tuesday, Sept. 7, will offer tales told by six people who will relate their stories of fun and fortune from a LGBTQ+ perspective. The entertainment will start at 7 p.m. ...

Gay News

WORLD Kazakhstan protest, anti-gay attack, Taiwan wedding, Olympics
More than 100 people protested against an event planned by LGBT activists in Kazakhstan's northwestern city of Aqtobe, reported. The protesters said at the Aug. 8 rally that they would hand a petition to the ...

Gay News

Olympics: IOC investigating out shot-putter for protest gesture
U.S. shot-putter Raven Saunders—a Black, LGBTQ athlete—has explained what the gesture she made following her silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics meant, according to She raised her hands and crossed them in an X ...

Gay News

OLYMPICS U.S. fencers protest teammate accused of sexual assault
Three fencers on the men's U.S. Olympic team wore pink masks during their match against Japan to protest a teammate accused of sexual assault, The Hill noted. Jake Hoyle, Curtis McDowald and Yeisser Ramirez wore their ...

Gay News

Taste of River North cancelled
On July 29, the River North Residents Association, along with theMART and Duff Entertainment, announced the cancellation of the 2021 edition of Taste of River North. The event was slated to take place Aug. 20-21 at ...

Gay News

OUTspoken storytelling to host six takes from LGBTQ+ perspective
--From a press release - The month of August is hot - but OUTspoken at the Sidetrack will be even hotter on Aug. 3 when six storytellers will tell tales of fun and fortune from a LGBTQ+ perspective! The program will start at 7:00 pm at ...

Gay News

Hungarian protesters defy prime minister with sizable march
In Hungary, approximately 30,000 people joined the annual Pride celebrations in the capital of Budapest on July 24, with attendees marching in colorful outfits in support of inclusion and freedom, according to However, this year ...


Copyright © 2022 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.






About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.