A gay couple is making the rounds of talk shows after they were kicked out of a California mall for kissing and holding hands.
Jose Guzman, right, and Daniel Chesmore, left, say they were asked to leave Westfield Galleria mall in Roseville, Ca, after their public display of affection proved to be too much for a mall security guard.
The mall stands by the security guard who ordered the two men to leave, the NY Daily News reports.
“We were just holding hands and kissing each other on the cheek,” Daniel Chesmore told the Daily News. “It was friendly and playful. There was nothing sexual about it.”
Chessmore just happened to have a recorder handy when the security guard confronted them.
“If you continue to kiss, you will be asked to leave the mall. Period,” the guard is heard saying on the recording, according to Fox 40.
“I counted you guys kissing 25 times. I told you before, we contact any couple [...]about this.”
Chesmore claims the guard exaggerated the number of times he and his boyfriend kissed.
“I feel isolated,” Chesmore explained. “I feel I’m being discriminated against because of my sexual orientation. For some reason I am some threat to children… but I work with children.”
Chesmore and Guzman are both tutors at an Oakland area school.
In a statement to Fox 40, a mall spokesperson stated that anyone who violates the mall’s conduct code is asked to leave the property.
But Fox 40 reports the mall’s policies do not mention public displays of affection.
The local news affiliate videotaped numerous heterosexual couples kissing in the mall. None of them were asked to leave, reports the station.
Chesmore says he does’t understand why he and his boyfriend are treated as if they are different.
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