Boone’s Camp Event Hall, an event venue in Booneville, Mississippi apologized after a video went viral for refusing to host same-sex and interracial weddings, reports Lauren Strapagiel of internet and media company Buzzfeed News. LaKambria Welch recorded the video, according to Aston Pittman of Deep South Voice, a forward-thinking news journal. The venue canceled her brother’s wedding, confronting the owner to find out why.
A woman, who identified herself one of the owners of the venue, stated that Boome’s Camp Event Hall doesn’t do gay weddings or mixed race because of their Christian belief. Welch’s brother is black while his fiancee is a white woman. The couple planned to hold the wedding at Boome’s Camp, but was abruptly canceled. Welch informed the owner that “she was also a Christian.” However, the woman said she did not want to argue her faith and added, “We just don’t participate.”
Welch asked the woman if that was her Christian belief, confirming with a “Yes, ma’am.” Initially, Welch posted the video on Facebook, where it garnered more than two million views and has since removed it from public view. Welch told Allyson Chiu of American daily newspaper The Washington Post she felt herself starting to shake when the owner explained she doesn’t do same-sex and interracial weddings. “Just hearing it gave me chills,” Welch adds.
The city of Booneville wrote a statement on Facebook in response to the viral video. In the statement, the mayor and other officials condemn discriminatory policies. Boone’s Camp issued an apology on the social media website, acknowledging the owner’s ignorance of the said matter.
The writer explained that growing up in Mississippi, “our racial boundaries that were unstated were that of staying within your own race.” The owners even studied the bible and consulted a pastor, but no evidence suggested that the Christian faith prohibited interracial marriage. “My intent was never of racism, but to stand firm on what I ‘assumed’ was right concerning marriage,” the post read.