In a depressing reminder of how anti-LGBT sentiment is still engrained in much of the American psyche, a taxi driver allegedly kicked a gay Houston couple out of his cab for kissing in the backseat last weekend.
What should've been a simple drive home from a local Houston gay bar turned sour when the cab driver allegedly told Andres Orozco and Travis Player that he doesn't give gay people rides and informed the couple they were going to hell.
"The man just turns back to us and tells us that he doesn't give gay people rides. And he proceeds to tell us we're going to hell for being gay," the couple told reporters. "...We were expressing our love for each other and for someone else to jump in and clearly state it's not right, that really did upset me."
Yellow Cab seemed shocked by the couple's allegations. According to Click2Houston, Yellow Cab claimed:
"For over forty years, Yellow Cab has proudly served all communities. We regret that the actions of one of our independent contract drivers took place, and are intently looking into the matter, which was undoubtedly an isolated incident. It is absolutely unacceptable that any passenger ever be denied service because of her or his sexual orientation. Yellow Cab has consistently been a vocal ally of the LGBT community in Houston and does not condone any discrimination whatsoever. No matter who you love, Yellow Cab will be there for you.
According community advocate Noel Freeman, who spoke with ABC, the Yellow Cabs actions are, unfortunately, completely legal as "There are no laws in the state of Texas that protect people from discrimination in public accommodations like cabs."
This incident is only the latest in a long line of cab drivers allegedly kicking out queer passengers for expressing affection -- or having anything to do with the queer community. Earlier this year some Cleveland taxi drivers reportedly refused to drive cabs that bore advertisements for the Gay Games. Additionally, last year a Chicago gay couple was kicked out of their cab for kissing, and the same thing happened to a lesbian Oregon couple.