Two property developers who have reportedly invested millions of dollars in the purchase of several prominent Sonoma business properties are facing a social media backlash for anti-gay social media postings.
Married couple Ken and Stacy Mattson over the past three years have purchased businesses like Sonoma's Best, General's Daughter, Cottage Inn & Spa, Elaine Bell Catering, and Ramekins Culinary School. Those businesses are now facing a boycott first called for on Facebook by online business reviewer and North Bay Voyager editor Sarah Stierch.
Stierch and others are upset after discovering postings made over several years by Stacy Mattson, decrying what she called "the gay agenda" and referring to gay marriage ceremonies as "sinful".
Stierch wrote on her Facebook page, "I will not patronize your business if you are anti-LGBTQI, racist, sexist, ageist etc. I will not write about your business, either."
"We 100 percent disagree with their personal beliefs and we told them that," Ramekins general manager David Daniel told the Sonoma Index-Tribune. He also noted that the Mattson's have been very friendly with the employees and have not attempted to influence his management decisions, including the choice to hang a rainbow flag at the front of the school in a show of solidarity with the local LGBTQI community.
Ken Mattson issued a statement this week, saying he wants the all of the businesses he and his wife have purchased to retain their history of inclusion. But he also says a "truly diverse community benefits from the discussion of a broad range of ideas".