Anti-vaxxers storm Cheesecake Factory and Applebee’s while diners ignore them

Four protesters were eventually arrested after confronting several confused customers and staff.

Tom Fenton
Friday 17 December 2021 11:39
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People gather iall around Europe to protest anti-covid measures.

The so-called “Battle of Applebee’s” has been fought, after a group of Antivaxxers attempted to storm several restaurants in a shopping mall in Queens, New York.

Footage shared to social media shows the moment that the group entered an Applebee’s in the New York City borough, voicing their disapproval at the state’s new Covid vaccine mandate for indoor dining and other activities as they did so.

In one clip, originally shared by @PatriotTakes on Twitter, the group of protesters can be seen staging a “sit in” at Applebee’s, and later requesting a glass of water for a child. After refusing to show proof of vaccination, the staff – as well as many other customers – simply ignored them.

Rather unsurprisingly, the police arrived shortly after to remove the sit-in protesters, but not before they disturbed a few more fellow customers.

Several branches were disturbed by the anti-vax group on Wednesday, with flyers indicating that protests were attempted at Cheesecake Factory and Shakeshack establishments in the Queens vicinity.

As PatriotTakes explains, the protesters were seemingly allowed to eat inside Shakeshack. “They [the protesters] ate at Shake Shack. She justifies disrupting employee income: “We don’t want to hurt the workers, but at the same time the mandates…”

New York City currently requires people to show proof of vaccination against Covid-19 in order to safeguard dining establishments, gyms, and other indoor businesses. The enforcement of mask mandates and the checking of vaccine cards, however, has largely been left for individual retail and hospitality workers to work out.

A mobile vaccination centre in New York City

Upon the arrival of police reinforcements at Applebees, four arrests were made on Wednesday night, according to an NYPD spokesman, Insider reported.

Video from the night shows several protesters surrounding the police after their arrival. Later, one individual argues with the police officers present, claiming that Applebee’s is a “public space”, and that they are “following” the mandate, on account of their exemption status.

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