W. Kamau Bell Promises Public Conversation About Racist Cafe Run-In | NBC Bay Area

W. Kamau Bell Promises Public Conversation About Racist Cafe Run-In

The Elmwood Cafe is accused of racism by comedian W. Kamau Bell.

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    W. Kamau Bell got a dose of racist treatment for his birthday on Monday — in the comedian's adopted hometown of Berkeley, no less. Cheryl Hurd reports. (Published Friday, Jan. 30, 2015)

    W. Kamau Bell got a dose of racist treatment for his birthday on Monday — in the comedian's adopted hometown of Berkeley, no less.

    Bell says that an employee of Elmwood Cafe in Berkeley treated him in a racist manner shortly after he and his wife had breakfasted at the eatery, he wrote on his blog this week.

    The cafe's owner has since reached out to Bell, who wrote on his blog that there will soon be a "public conversation" about what happened and its greater implications.

    Meanwhile, the facts.

    Bell, a Berkeley resident and comedian who starred on "Totally Biased" on FX, had eaten at the cafe for breakfast with his wife and some of his wife's friends.

    Bell then left the cafe to work at another coffee shop, and walked back to the cafe to meet his wife and her friends for lunch.

    Standing outside the cafe talking to his family -- with a laptop and a just-purchased children's book about multiracial families in his hands -- a cafe employee started banging on the glass in an effort to get him to go away, he wrote.

    "I as a black man was being told to "GIT!" like it was 1963, Selma, Alabama, and I was crashing a meeting of The New Moms of the Confederacy," he wrote.

    The employee later told him that it was thought that Bell was there "selling something," according to his account.