The Sushi Bar in Alexandria, Virginia is in the news this week; not because of its great sushi
or exemplary service but because the restaurant owners decided to ban children from the restaurant. This isn’t just a ban of young children, who may not be well suited for the upscale intimate dining experience that The Sushi Bar offers, though. The restaurant has banned anyone under the age of 18. While some parents were outraged and expressed their disapproval on the company’s Facebook page, I don’t see what the big deal is.
I’m a mom and my two children have dined at upscale restaurants; they know how to behave in a restaurant and they can enjoy their dinner without interrupting the enjoyment of other patrons. However, that doesn’t mean that they should be allowed in any restaurant. If a restaurateur wants to offer patrons an adults-only dining experience, then so be it.
The initial backlash on Facebook made me laugh. You can’t take your kids to a new sushi restaurant, so what? There are other sushi restaurants that are family friendly and I’m sure you can find an equally upscale sushi restaurant if you want to expose your children to fine dining.
seems to be taking this no-children policy personally, though. Perhaps his response was due to some of the outrageous remarks from other Facebook fans that think children should be banned from restaurants because they’re loud and as parents, we don’t know how to discipline them more than the policy itself. While the generalization of children is absurd, Bray took it to heart:
“To all of you people who are too ugly to have or properly care for children, let me start by saying adults are louder and way more obnoxious than children. Futhermore [sic], when children do get loud and noticed it is again the adult that should be thrown out! Can I assume that the owners will toss anyone being obnoxious? I'll bet you that this is a place that plays edgy music and refuses to turn it down! They are most likely serving 2nd rate food that caters to the pop-culture image driven clubbers set! I was bothered by a noisy child yesterday and it wasn't the kid I scolded. You idiots who agree with the owners are the ones needing a spanking!”
There are far more supportive comments than negative comments, but one negative comment stood out to me. In my opinion, Stan Crout’s comment
is the only one that had some weight behind it. He said, “Discrimination is discrimination no matter how your slice it. Age Policy is no different that [sic] race, religion or gender policy!”
He does have a point, not from a legal perspective but from an ethical standpoint. Is discriminating against a child okay simply because the child isn’t legally an adult? I try to live by the saying that children are people too and as a parent, I try to give my children a certain amount of autonomy.
While I’m not offended by the child ban at The Sushi Bar, my oldest was when I told him about it. The look of disgust on his 11 year-old face made me chuckle so I asked him why it offended him. “Kids have to eat. Sure it is a fancy restaurant but kids can be formal. Kids have rights; kids are people too and have feelings.”
Oh how I love that boy! What do you think of The Sushi Bar’s ban on children?