In late May, a lesbian couple was accosted by a security guard at a Minneapolis Twins game for what they called a “brief kiss.” The guard told them in no uncertain terms that he felt that their behavior was unacceptable. He informed them that “we don’t play grab ass here” and added that they must “adhere to the 10 Commandments” while at the stadium.
Understandably, the two women were upset. And while the security guard has been reprimanded, he is still employed at the Twins stadium. The two women, Taylor Campione and Kelsi Culpepper, are now filing a complaint with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, saying that the guard discriminated against them because of their sexual orientation.
“I want a zero-tolerance harassment policy instituted at Target Field,” Culpepper explained. “I think it’s pretty pathetic that there isn’t one everywhere already.”
According to the women, after the kiss, the guard approached them shaking his head. “I saw you kissing that girl, you can’t do that,” he said. When Campione retorted that she could kiss her girlfriend if she wanted, the guard launched into his offensive comments.
Kevin Smith, a spokesman for the Twins, said that the guard has an exemplary record and that he has been working for the team for almost two decades. “That behavior just is unacceptable,” Smith told City Pages, an alternative local newspaper. “That security guard has received both a verbal and written reprimand that will be put in his personnel file, and he understands that that is not an acceptable behavior.”
The most curious (and perhaps disturbing) part of the whole exchange was the guard’s “Ten Commandments” comment, since the two women were clearly not violating the Ten Commandments by kissing in public. If the guard was really worried about enforcing biblical law in the stadium, he should be going after the fans who yelled “God!” whether in enthusiasm or anger. It’s also worth noting that the guard likely works during Sunday games, which is not exactly resting on the Sabbath.
The comments were thoughtless, hypocritical and homophobic, and the two women are right to file a complaint. Let’s hope that the guard receives more than a slap on the wrist for his outburst.
Photo from Wikimedia Commons.