Columbus Pizza Truck Employee Stands Up For Customers Targeted By Hate Speech


UPDATED: Thursday January 3, 2013 11:56 AM

You often hear when someone does the wrong thing, but an employee of a local business did the right thing recently to help two of his customers who were the targets of hate speech.

Levi Taylor said that he didn’t even think when he took a recent stand against homophobic comments directed at two of his customers.

“It was an easy decision,” Taylor said.

On Saturday, Taylor was making pizza at Mikey’s Late Night Slice, a pizza truck parked in the Short North.

Joel Diaz was there with his friend Ethan.

“We walked up to the line, holding hands, laughing and joking about a fun night,” Diaz said. “All of a sudden, a guy turns around and tell us, ‘Hey, you guys, cut that gay (stuff) out.”

Others in line to get pizza at Mikey’s told the man that his hateful behavior was out of line and unacceptable.

Taylor said that he heard the man get louder and louder.

“I told him if he couldn’t start treating other people in line as human beings, I wasn’t going to serve him,” Taylor said.

The heckler didn’t stop, and he left,” Taylor said.

Diaz said it was an awesome moment for him.

“I felt a sense of relief inside of me,” Diaz said. “That whole felling of being alone was gone. I suddenly felt there was an army there against one person.”

Diaz said that he had to share the story, and thousands have “liked it on Facebook.”

People around the world are ordering T-shirts from Mikey’s, where a pizza guy took a stand.

“I couldn’t be prouder,” said Jason Biundo, owner of Mikey’s. “He did what we would have done.”

He said customers also did the right thing -- demanding respect for people, regardless of their sexual orientation.

“Things are changing,” Diaz said. “People in the community are willing to step up, allies are stepping up, saying, ‘It isn’t Ok. We are here for you. We are going to take a stand with you.’”

Taylor said that he hopes the response to the story has gotten to the unidentified heckler and that he realizes he should be kinder.

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