SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco restaurant Paprika is now facing fierce backlash online and vandalism because of a now viral video showing one of the restaurant's owners using the N-word in a heated argument with a Black man.
Gabrielle Seckar and her business partner Petr Seckar own the Michelin recommended Eastern European restaurant in San Francisco's Mission district.
About a week ago, during a confrontation with young Black man over the homeless urinating and camping out near the restaurant, Gabrielle called the man, who doesn't want to be identified, the N-word. The exchange was recorded by the man who posted it on Twitter and has been viewed over half a million times.
Seckar issued an apology statement days later, which was received poorly on social media and resulted in the business being graffitied with the words including "F-You Racists" and hundreds of negative reviews on Yelp and Google.
We reached out to the man who posted the video. He didn't want to go on camera but said he wanted the video to "speak for itself" and believes Gabrielle's apology is insincere.
Cesar Gomez is a friend of Petr Seckar and the founder of LegalCoach LLC, which deals with crisis management cases. He insisted Gabrielle step down from the restaurant she helped found in 2013.
"There's no coming back from that! She couldn't redeem that restaurant! It was over for that restaurant unless she as gone!" says Gomez, who denounced Gabrielle's use of the slur. "She disrespected that young man and that word has been shot into space and never should it be seen again or heard again on this planet!"
Cesar, who was born and raised in the Mission near where the restaurant is, also offered the young man an olive branch to help bridge the divide.
"The gentleman that was disrespected, he needs to come back as a VIP. Free meals, move and respect and honor and that's what he's going to get if he chooses to embrace that opportunity. I want to have dinner with him and I want to talk to him about this. I want to have him at the restaurant and make sure he understands he is a VIP here."
We passed along the message to the young man, who was happy to hear this new development. He and Cesar connected over the phone and plan to have dinner at the restaurant on Saturday.
Seckar sent ABC7 News this full statement:
My name is Gabrielle ll Seckar, and I am, as of today, a former owner in Paprika on 24th St.I am writing this letter to offer my most heartfelt apologies for using a racial slur in a recent argument with a young man. I made a tremendous error in judgment, in using the most vile word imaginable to insult a young Black man, and for the rest of my life moving forward, I will carry the weight of my deepest shame and regret over this incident. It was a huge mistake and one that I will never again repeat. I recognize the pain my words inflicted not only on the individual I had the confrontation with but on the Black community as a whole.While I have been grateful to have been a part of the multicultural Mission District community, it is clear I need to make further efforts to educate myself and come to terms with my own biases.Therefore, as such, as of this letter, dated July 24, 2020, I, Gabriell Seckar, and at the request of my partners, am officially severing any and all ties with the Paprika restaurant. It is the wishes of the remaining owners and staff to work together with the community to mend a fractured relationship that had absolutely no hand in causing. That is why to ensure Paprika and it's staff of hard working locals and caring patrons not be forced to suffer for my own personal actions, I have agreed to step down.I will be reaching out to organizations to figure out how best I can give back to the community and make things right.I apologize and take accountability for what I did and the hurtful things I said, and I acknowledge without equivocation that #BlackLivesMatter and #NoHumanIsIllegal. These are small steps in what I know will be a long, difficult and necessary process of learning and growing as a person.Again, I have severed all ties with Paprika, and offer my deepest apology to everyone that I have disappointed, including the staff, my family, the Mission District, and the Black Community.Gabrielle Seckar
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