The Atlanta gym owner who posted a ban on cops and military members says he wants to abolish the police, and he wouldn’t call the cops even if he got physically threatened.
“Absolutely not. I do not feel safe in their presence,” Jim Chambers told CBS 46 in Atlanta, posted on the web site of Telemundo Amarillo.
Instead, he said would call people he trusts to help him — and he apparently believes in the Second Amendment.
“And I’m armed. And I have the right to be armed in this state. And it’s a stand-your-ground state,” he said in the CBS 46 television interview.
Chambers caused a firestorm recently when he posted a profane handwritten sign outside his gym, EAV Barbell Club, announcing that cops and members of the military weren’t welcome — a policy the gym has had for some time, he said.
Chambers, who said he grew up in Brooklyn, runs the gym as a nonprofit organization that also hosts political meetings.
Getting rid of cops is one of the group’s core beliefs.
“Collectively, as a political group we believe in police abolition,” Chambers told CBS 46 reporter Rebecca Schramm. He called cops “a brutal terrorist force in this country.”
He said he took down the sign because it was drawing heat to people who use the gym, but that a comparable sign would be going up soon.
“I don’t apologize for the language. I think our violent henchmen of the state ought to be spoken to in that way,” Chambers said during the CBS 46 interview, adding about police that “they serve to murder people and lock them up needlessly.”
He said he has often used such language against police officers.
He said he believes police began with slave patrols in the South and union busters in the North.
“We didn’t need them before, and we don’t need them now,” Chambers told CBS 46.
The gym doesn’t ban veterans, he said, as has been widely reported. He said he lives with a veteran and doesn’t denigrate people who chose to be in the military.
But active-duty military personnel aren’t welcome in the gym, because they carry out the actions of the American government, which he called “the most destructive and sadistic force the world has ever seen.”
“What our Army does is evil,” he said during the CBS 46 television interview.
“So I don’t want to make somebody stronger so that they can go kill Yemenis and North Koreans,” Chambers told CBS 46’s Schramm.
Chambers noted that “trolls” have criticized him.
The gym owner was the subject of an open letter by Kyle Reyes published Thursday in New Boston Post calling him out for the ban on cops and military members. The article has since gone viral.