The state of Colorado has suspended the business license of C&C Coffee and Kitchen indefinitely.
It is currently unknown if the mom-and-pop cafe will ever be allowed to reopen.
Well, C&C Coffee and Kitchen opened the doors of its restaurant on Mother’s Day to allow customers to celebrate the holiday together.
Customers, who are well aware of social distancing measures, had the freedom to come sit and dine at the restaurant.
According to officials, the cafe violated the state’s ban that only allows carryout and delivery.
So the Colorado government has struck back and indefinitely suspended the license of C&C Coffee and Kitchen.
See footage of the cafe’s Mother’s Day crowd below:
The news comes as the U.S. sees its worst unemployment rate in decades.
Furthermore, the velocity at which Americans have lost their jobs is unprecedented in the history of this country.
Denver 7 ABC has more details on the state's decision to revoke the cafe's business license:
During his daily news conference on the state's response to COVID-19, Governor Jared Polis on Monday said he was “extremely disappointed” when he saw the videos taken inside the Castle Rock restaurant and said the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) was using its authority under the Colorado Food Protection Act to suspend the café’s license indefinitely – which Polis said would probably be at least 30 days.
"The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment believes that the C&C Coffee and Korean Kitchen in Castle Rock is causing an immediate health hazard," he said. "It's very sad when businesses operate illegally and workers lose their jobs through no fault of their own. Some businesses that operate illegally might face costly court battle or even worse — the deaths of employees, owners or patrons."
He said the owner of the restaurant was being irresponsible by opening in defiance of the public health order because being shut down for at least 30 days will mean likely lost wages for the employees and money not coming in that could have been used to pay rent or the mortgage for the building.
A Tri-County Health Department spokesperson said earlier Monday that the department was disappointed in the café’s actions Sunday and risked undermining what other Douglas County restaurants and residents have achieved during the stay-at-home and safer at home phases.
As news of the business license suspension spread, people have rallied to the cafes defense.
A GoFundMe page has been set-up to support the owners and their staff during this traumatic experience.
The story comes less than a week after Shelly Luther, the owner of Salon a la Mode in Texas, was arrested for opening her salon.
Senator Ted Cruz and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin both stopped by the salon to show their support of Luther.
The Denver Channel reports on the cafe owner's comments defending himself:
Arellano, the owner of the café, says he doesn't regret his actions, and added it's not fair that big stores like Costco and Walmart can operate, but small business owners can't open their doors. He said his family's livelihood is on the line if he continues to keep his doors closed.
"Done. Bankrupt. Personally, business, everything. It's done. At this point, what does it matter?" he said. "I believe in freedom and that's what we are here for. We are standing for freedom."
He said he did mark off tables with tape, but adds that he was busy and it wasn’t his place to tell customers what to do.
Signs on the doors read, "IF YOU ARE SCARED STAY AT HOME!"
"We are not stupid," Arellano said. We are not children and I think that is what we are being treated like."
Indeed, the very concept of freedom is being threatened by "scientific" tyranny.
It is being reported that C&C Coffee and Kitchen was open on Monday afternoon.
It is unclear what the state of Colorado will do if the owner continues to defy the state's order.
PJ Media confirms that the cafe was open on Monday and that the owner has no intention of shutting down despite the revoked business license:
C&C Coffee and Kitchen remained open Monday afternoon, and it’s unclear exactly what the state is going to do if the owners continue to defy the order to close.
“It is disheartening that this restaurant has chosen to move ahead of the public orders and not even consider implementing best practices to prevent the spread of COVID-19,” John Douglas, Tri-County’s executive director, said in a statement announcing the closure order.
The health department could shut them down, but owners Jesse and April Arellano do not appear to be in any hurry to comply. “We’re here to serve the people of the community, churches and schools, and anyone we can help. That’s why we’re in the business, to serve people,” Jesse said.
NPR reports that the state of Colorado will make a decision on May 25 as to whether or not restaurants may be able to reopen.
However, many businesses cannot sustain themselves indefinitely without reopening.
A prolonged shutdown, many warn, would lead to the permanent closure of many small business and mom-and-pop establishments.
According to NPR:
All Colorado restaurants have been under tight restrictions since March 17, when the state health department's order closing bars, restaurants, gyms, theaters and casinos took effect.
Arellano's decision to reopen her restaurant at full capacity came days after the governor extended the state's disaster emergency declaration through June 6. As Polis issued that order last week, he cited the threat of a disaster that could bring "widespread or severe damage, injury or loss of life."
On Friday, Polis said restaurants may be able to reopen by the time Memorial Day weekend arrives at the end of May, depending on the latest data about the coronavirus outbreak.
In a news conference Monday afternoon, Polis said a decision on opening restaurants will be made on May 25.
While Colorado continues to enact strict policies, states like Texas and Ohio are beginning to allow their citizens to safely resume working so they can put food on the table.
At this point, everyone knows the risk of COVID-19.
We have the right to exercise freedom and personal responsibility!
As President Trump rightfully said, we cannot allow the cure to be worse than the virus itself!