A man camped out in front of a Brooklyn coffee shop and refused to leave until the barista took down the Black Lives Matter sign posted on the establishment's front window on Thursday.
A widely circulated video of the incident shows a man standing outside Burly Coffee, expressing his objection to the establishment's "Black Lives Matter" signage and arguing with a barista and several bystanders.
"This is the most racist thing out there," the man is heard saying, referring to the BLM sign displayed on the coffee shop's window. "I'm not a racist...This is offensive and I want you to take off this sign."
The clip was recorded by Rohan Singh, a neighborhood resident who said he stepped out to get a cup of coffee Thursday morning when he found the man, identified as Abraham "Avrumy" Knofler, arguing with the barista.
In the video, which is nearly 11 minutes long, several customers, including Singh, are shown repeatedly asking the man to move away from the counter so they can place their order and to stop harassing the employee.
All Lives Matter Protest
Knofler later told the Gothamist in a phone interview that he was protesting at the coffee shop to make a point that all lives matter. "They don't have to take it down, I just wanted to defend all lives matter," he said.
As the calls for him to leave get louder in the video, Knofler begins a one-man demonstration with chants of "all lives matter" while raising his fists in the air.
"I don't understand why this is so offensive to you, to see something saying that 'Black Lives Matter,'" a store employee tries to explain to Knofler. "It's not saying that all lives don't matter, it's just saying that Black lives matter because they haven't mattered in this country ever."
The video concludes with Knofler still standing in front of the counter, refusing to leave. Watch the entire clip below:
Burly Coffee Issues Statement
Burly Coffee released a statement in the wake of the incident on Instagram, reiterating the business' support for the BLM movement, while also applauding its staff for "standing up to the blinding hate."
"Unfortunately, this was not an isolated incident with this person and our priority continues to be the safety and well-being of our staff," the statement read in part. "We are overwhelmed by the generous support of our staff via our Venmo Tip Jar. The baristas that experienced this hatred will receive the tips directly. Burly will be making a contribution to @bedstuystrong in support of the community we love and are thankful to be a part of."
Knofler is a Trump Supporter, Thinks Coronavirus is Fake
Shortly after the video started circulating on social media, users tracked down Knofler and his since-deleted Twitter account, which included a number of posts supporting Trump and endorsing white supremacy and referring to the coronavirus pandemic as a hoax.
Knofler also refers to the coronavirus as a hoax in his social media posts as well as at the coffee shop when the barista asks him to wear a mask.
"No mask, no service. You need to go," the employee could be heard saying to the man, who was not wearing a face covering.
"Why do I need a mask?" he responded. "The pandemic is a hoax, only sheep like you wear the mask, because you've been told whatever you've been told, but you don't use your head, because you're stupid," he said earlier in the argument.
Drug Charges including Cocaine Dealing
As pointed out by Twitter user @AIRSTEVEJOBS, Knofler has previously been arrested and has an upcoming court date for drug related charges. He was indicted on two Class B felonies for dealing cocaine, among other charges. He received a plea deal to a misdemeanor charge and is awaiting sentencing next month. He also had two warrants issued for his arrest after he failed to appear in court.