DES MOINES, Iowa -- An East Village record store, Marv’s Music, is facing hateful comments and even losing business after they decided to sell pride shirts during the annual pride festival in Des Moines.
After several comments were sent directly to the business, owner Luke Dickens decided to take a stand.
“We don’t stand for bullying or bigotry and if somebody wants to take that stand against us, it’s not about us we are just a record store. It’s about the person walking down the street, the kid who goes to school was just being themselves and people are saying things against them that isn’t fair and isn’t OK. It’s about that it’s not about us. We are just a record store. It’s about people that live with this every single day of their life. I’m not going to let it happen. Yes I may lose business over it. It doesn’t matter to me at the end of the day if my business is closed. I can go to bed knowing I did the right thing,” Dickens said.
They decided to take that hate and use it as fuel to further their support for the LGBTQ community by donating funds from the shirts and part of their record sales to One Iowa and Iowa Safe Schools.
“I’m really happy to shop here and really happy to support these guys. I have family members who are LGBTQ and a lot of friends who are LGBTQ and just supporting them and being allies is so important. And it’s really refreshing to see businesses that I like to shop at supporting those as well and being vocal about that,” customer Mason Ferguson said.
The owner and employees say the bottom line is that all are welcome at Marv’s Music and their partner store, Vinyl Cup Records.
“When somebody comes in and attacks a place like that, that is so near and dear to so many people in the community, it stings quite a bit. Mainly because music doesn’t know prejudice. Music doesn’t really know hate. Music doesn’t judge; it’s just there to make you feel good,” employee Tyson Holm said.