PHOENIX — A Tempe City Council member is upset over a coffee shop opening in his area and it has nothing to do with the color of the cups.
“I respect your right to open this business, but I will not buy from you, and I hope you go out of business because enough other people agree with me,” Granville wrote. “I hope you are not a good fit for the values of Tempe buyers and you close down from a lack of business. And I will happily help you pack up and leave Tempe when you go out of business.
“You fill me with actual hate for what you are doing.”
Granville said he coaches young girls to be “fierce competitive humans” but those lessons would be undermined by Bikini Beans because it shows a woman’s “greatest value is as an object of desire.”
“It’s girls in bikinis serving coffee,” he said in an interview with KTAR News’ Cooper Rummell. “That means that somebody sat down and said, ‘Here is how much coffee is worth, here is how much girls half naked serving coffee is worth.’ There is a value added to that.”
In a Facebook post of its own, the coffee shop said Granville’s viewpoint on the business is his personal choice.
“If you choose to look at women and desire them as an object instead of looking more in depth than you will only see as far as your mind will allow you to see,” the post said.
Co-owner Regina Lyles said she believes Granville is spreading a message of hate for no reason and creating a hostile business environment.
“We are a family-operated company, locally owned and for (Granville) to wish failure upon anyone, especially a small business, I think is shameful,” she said in an interview with KTAR News’ Cooper Rummell.
Lyles, who works at the company’s Phoenix location several days a week dressed in her own bikini, said it is a fun environment and empowering for the women who work there.
“If you have a woman that is willing to put on a bikini and go to work and feel comfortable in her own skin, that exudes confidence and that is empowering in itself,” she said. “I would completely disagree with him saying that we are objectifying women.”
It was unclear when the Tempe location will open, but it is hiring.
The controversial coffee shop first opened its doors near Seventh Street and Thomas Road in Phoenix last year.
A similar bikini-themed coffee shop opened in 2012 in north Scottsdale, but it has since closed.
KTAR News’ Cooper Rummell contributed to this report.
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