Brooklyn Bar Owner Finally Covers Controversial 'Bullet Hole' Wall, Protesters Still Call For Boycott
The owner of the controversial Crown Heights bar and sandwich shop Summerhill has finally covered the “bullet hole” wall but is it too late?
Becca Brennan, Summerhill’s owner, closed the bar early Tuesday to plaster over the hole-ridden wall she initially said was from bullet holes, according to a report from Gothamist.
— Gothamist (@Gothamist) September 20, 2017
Following the wall’s covering, protest organizers Paola Ayala, Jon Villaran and Justine Stephens issued a joint statement calling the plastering “purely performative.”
“The act of covering a wall which was originally marketed as displaying ‘real bullet holes’ is purely performative and does not merit any level of praise,” they said, citing Brennan’s “continued dismissiveness at meetings.”
“She may be able to cover up the holes, but she cannot undo the harm she has already caused,” they added. “In light of this action, the organizers against Summerhill emphasize the boycott against this establishment.”
In the original press release for the bar the statement included the following: “Yes, that bullet hole-ridden wall was originally there and, yes, we’re keeping it.” Following that, Brennan even admitted that she’s not sure it’s an actual bullet hole, telling Gothamist, “Just looking at the angle I don’t know if that is possible that that’s a bullet hole. We call it that because if you look at the history, someone seriously said, ‘Isn’t that the place where we could buy guns?’ And then we were like, ‘okay.'”
Residents of the area accused Brennan of exploiting the neighborhood’s violent past for profit, which ultimately led to a heated meeting between her and those protesting against the bar.
She tried to backpedal on promoting the wall as such during the meeting, saying:
I loved it. I think it looks nice. People would come in and say, ‘Are you keeping that wall?’ And I said yes. And some people would say, ‘Are those bullet holes?’ And I never once to a person said, ‘Yes, those are bullet holes.’ They are obviously holes from anchors in the wall. That’s where the soda fridge was when the bodega was there, ok?