Shop’s Pro-Marriage Equality Sign Sparks Outrage By Customer

The Chipped Cup, an independent coffee shop in the Hamilton Heights neighborhood of New York, has found itself in the middle of a social media clash with a (now former) regular customer. On Thursday, the irate patron took to Facebook and Twitter to express her unhappiness with a pro-marriage equality message written on a sidewalk sandwich board by the manager of the shop (who is pictured above).

Here are the former customer's messages, according to DNAinfo, :

"You just lost two local customers with your political sandwich board," a person listed as Leesa Dahl wrote on the coffee shop's Facebook page. "We were so happy when you joined the neighborhood and were faithful, but alienating the majority of the population is a really irritating and dumb move. We will encourage others not to patronize your business."

On Twitter, Dahl, who lists herself as a pianist in the opera world, wrote: "It’s too bad @ChippedCupNY discriminates against 98% of their customer base by being H8ful!"

Dahl told DNAinfo what bothers her about the pro-marriage equality sign is that the shop is "pushing a political agenda to customers." Grub Street New York alleges that Dahl also dropped the f-bomb in a tweet to The Chipped Cup, a message that has since been deleted.

The owner of The Chipped Cup is 33-year-old Andrew Ding who sums up the controversy perfectly: "It's a sign on a sandwich board about equality. How anyone can turn that into something about hate is beyond me."


  1. Nick says

    To answer the query at the end of the story-by the owner-the answer is simple-when an individual uses a book of fiction that has more inconsistencies and schizophrenic viewpoints that anyone can use to push “their” religiosity on people-it isn’t a stretch that some person with hate in their heart could justify their myopic and outdated viewpoint.

  2. kp05 says

    The opera gig was probably not going too well. Now she can play for NOM. They’ll gladly pay her salary…the headline writes itself in true NOM overstated fashion:

    “New York Starlet Refuses to Be Bullied Into Accepting Corrupt Marriage!”

  3. simon says

    These two self-centered idiots think they are the only ones in the World. Just like the Starbucks CEO said, take your money somewhere else and shove it.

  4. stranded says

    I haven’t followed the links in this post, so maybe it’s mentioned there, but when I read about this a few days ago it included a final tweet from this woman claiming to be a lesbian. I think she’s a member of GOProud or something. Yet another homocon in need of some therapy.

  5. Tom says

    Thank you goes out to Andrew Ding, the staff at The Chipped Cup and your sandwich board for standing up for equality. I hope 2013 is a great year for you.

  6. Nat says

    Funny thung is this…. that opera buffoon probably was a defender of the chick-fil-crap guy denouncing gays and got pissed at people who were boycotting them.

  7. Steve Chapman says

    So, this woman will take “our” money when she performs but doesn’t believe in equality for us. WOW…I think if I were a New Yorker I would make the choice not to go to one of her performances.

  8. Matt26 says

    Working in the opera? She has nothing against lgbt people sitting in the audience and paying their tickets? Perhaps she should refuse to play the piano while non heterosexuals in the audience.
    Living in NYC and never seen lgbt? Please, one of the biggest lgbt cities in the world and thousands of lgbt travelling there (incl. me every now and then). Perhaps she should move.
    Well done Chipped Cup, I hope your number of customers will increase. Next time when in NYC, I’ll come to buy – a lot.

  9. Mary says

    Is she kidding? This is New York City. Where even social conservatives are likely to be pro-gay – or at risk for becoming so with only a small amount of influence from others!

  10. PAUL B. says

    I was under the impression that all penis were friends of the gay community. I’ve never met one that didn’t like me…and visa versa.
    Oh, not that kind of penis?
    As Roseanne Roseannadanna would say….”Never Mind”.

  11. says

    if it’s the same Leesa Dahl who is the first to show up in a facebook search with photos of opera scores in the background all i can say is “Lady….your husband has brutal gayface”

    she’s terrified that her life as a beard may be coming to an end.

  12. John says

    Never mind the opera patrons – think of how many LGBT people work in her field! And it’s a small, gossipy business.

    Btw, if you do some digging, it turns out the woman (Leesa Dahl) is a serial liar, bully, and even stalker. She told people (including her parents) that she worked at Juilliard, but Juilliard published a statement saying they never employed her. And there was one guy who she would prank call with spoofed caller ID, pretending to be the Met calling him for a gig – he then changed his phone #, but she still tracked him down. Others have come forward who knew her at the SF Conservatory, said she used to gang up on people she didn’t like, Heathers-style. Hot mess!!

  13. Lars says

    If you look at this chick’s online persona, she is nothing but a professional attention whore. Don’t feed the trolls. Don’t serve them coffee either.

  14. John says

    Oh, and if you google her name, the 2nd autocompletion that comes up is “leesa dahl stalker”. This, my friends, is the face of opposition to marriage equality.

  15. Cal says

    I looked at the woman’s Twitter and she keeps saying she’s not against same-sex marriage and that her remarks were misinterpreted. What?

    Is there another way to interpret saying the equality symbol (with no commentary) is “H8ful” and alienating 98% of customers?

  16. Mary says

    I read the full story from one of the links provided here and it seems that the offending words were (and I’m serious, now) “Peace, Love, Equality.” Yes, you read it right. Three of the most common and non-controversial words in American English usage. I was expecting the offense to be something like the following:

    “A Homophobe-free environment. All non-bigots welcome”

    or maybe

    “Womyn to womyn – love is great!


    “Guys, try a man. You might like it!”

    About the only place that “Peace, Love, Equality” might offend would be at a meeting of social conervatives – where the “Peace and love” together might reek of a 1960’s-style message. And where the word “equality ” is often suspect for two reasons. One is that it often means that equality of outcome is expected, not just equality of opportunity. And the second is that it is viewed as a word liberals use when they really mean “now you can’t oppose my views because I’ll call you a bigot if you do.” Yet even at a meeting of socons, this would be an emotional reaction. For these words to offend us justifiably we have to know how the user is defining them.

  17. margueritegautier says

    The Chipped Cup is on Broadway between 148th and 149th, an easy trip on the 1 train, 145th st stop. (No, I’m not connected with them in any way.)

  18. Bob says

    Maybe she’s mad at the gays for defeating Romney

    I hope her hairdresser sees this article and reach walking down the street knowing everybody thinks you’re a f****** bigot a******es for the Nair

  19. John Bisceglia says

    Classically-trained pianists are a mixed bunch. When I was at U of MI’s music school, there was always the crowd of organists, vocalists, and pianists who came from the whole church-sacred music background who were against equality for gays. Music schools may have changed a lot (I hope) since 1987, but then there were well-known closeted music professors and OMG the number of queer/closeted organists….made worse by a lifestyle that requires 6-8+ hours of isolated practice which often leads to social awkwardness in general.

  20. Mark says

    Does she even realize what she’s done?

    She’s in the opera world and she doesn’t think there’s not going to be any backlash?

    It’s a pity we can get a camera crew to film what happens to her in the next month or two.

  21. jleo71 says

    To the Chipped Cup …I will see you in July when my partner and I come to NYC to get married @ the Bethesda Fountain in Central Park.
    Sent Dahl a message to let her know that thanks to her many have discovered this coffee shop and will support it.

  22. Roger says

    A little casual research reveals this woman is batshit crazy. She’s a pathological liar, a stalker, and a bully with severe anger / mental health issues. Of course, that’s just my opinion.

  23. Bollux says

    As much as I hate coffee, those that drink it and the moronic culture that surrounds it, this protesting slag sounds like she should be teaching banjo in white Kentucky, not piano in the liberal North.

  24. me_in_pdx says

    To that woman, if you don’t like it simply don’t shop there. No one is forcing you into shopping anywhere. If you feel like the fictitious 98% is with you then I am sure the business won’t survive. Although last time I checked, we the gay people with the gay agenda, we represented about 10% of the population so get your numbers straight. But as I may suspect that business will be there for years to come despite your childish rant.

  25. Randy says

    “It’s a sign on a sandwich board about equality. How anyone can turn that into something about hate is beyond me”

    This person hasn’t had experience with men’s rights (e.g. the draft, infant circumcision, and rape of males) which is usually labelled misogyny.

  26. BearlyBob says

    Seems a bit nutty. They’ve had the standard Equality = sign on their door which she would have seen each time she went there. Why did this one set her off?

    Here’s her Twitter: @dahlhalla

  27. Stufromoz says

    As someone who knows a lot of people in the opera world in the USA, this outburst was so unsurprising from Leesa. She may happen to be a very good pianist, but she does bring the crazy, which means that very few people choose to use her these days…. And, there is a long history of crazy…..

  28. BearlyBob says

    She uses the #tcot hastag on her @dahlhalla twitter handle. #tcot = Top Conservatives On Twitter.

    She’s a troll. A piano playing in the opera on Broadway equality hating troll. Yep, this will end well for her.

  29. EchtKultig says

    “Why did this one set her off?”

    As I’ve posted a couple times before, we’re going to see a increase in psycho right wingers losing it for the next several months. The reelection of Obama, the passing of 4 pro-gay referenda, and now the mere possibility the Supremes could strike down DOMA, etc. means these a–holes’ world is falling apart.
    It was amusing to have discovered this minute (thankfully) subculture of “NYC Hipster, but Homophobe”, like this friend of Lisa’s: @liveforthesun who, if I’ve done my sleuthing correctly, is the wife of a Faux News producer. And yes, yes, I know some American liberals are closet homophobes. But the point is they stay in the closet about it. These people are like a bizarre cross between Anne Coulter and Harmony Korine.

  30. Matt in NYC says

    CVP: She Lives on Chambers St? Chipped Cup is on 148th and Broadway, what in the world was she doing this far uptown?

    jleo71: Don’t bother, there are a ton of good coffee shops in the city, many of which have similar signs, Chipped Cup is miles away from anywhere else you’re likely to visit.

    That being said, even tho Tanto Dulce is a shorter walk from my apartment, cheaper, and IMO a little bit better, I know where I’m going for my morning coffee tomorrow.

  31. BearlyBob says

    EchtKultig I agree. I noticed my local news station website was full of exactly these types of comments on the gay marriage / scotus posts. Usually the stuff is quite benign, but in the last week the nutters have come out of the woodwork. Small town in the south here and it’s eyeopening to see people using the word ‘negro’ in posts and other blatant bigotry. Even more shocking (well maybe not) is the commonality that all of them employ Biblical based arguments and seem to find a way to bring Obama into this. Christians and bigots/racists? Who knew? LOL

  32. Joseph Singer says

    “On Twitter, Dahl, who lists herself as a pianist in the opera world, wrote: “It’s too bad @ChippedCupNY discriminates against 98% of their customer base by being H8ful!”

    I’d sure like to know where she got her “98%” It’s obvious that the woman has “issues” that the coffee shop doesn’t need to deal with.

  33. BearlyBob says

    @Joseph Singer – On her actual twitter @dahlhalla, she uses the #tcot hash tag. That’s the tea party / conservative freak flag. She is (was) a closet ‘phobe and a troll.

  34. Bob R says

    @PAUL B: It wouldn’t be Roseanne Roseannadanna that would say “never mind”, it would have been Emily Latella. Roseanne would have said: “well it just goes to show ya, if it isn’t one thing it’s another…”

    I sure do miss Gilda Radner.

  35. andrew says

    Whenever a person or business is supporting something that you strongly disagree with: follow that Irish example and boycott them and try to convince others to follow your example. If you prevail: congratulations. If not: you lose!

  36. jamal49 says

    Marriage equality, civil equality for LGBTQ people is NOT political. It is moral. And the corruption of our morals by evangelicals and conservatives alike has to be stopped.

  37. Lynel says

    LGBT community in east coast and especially New York….PLEASE VISIT THIS SHOP. Conservatives want to bully store owners to not support us. We need to show our support of those who stick their neck out and stand up for equality.

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