Video: Alex and Ruth Burgos face cops after diaper change at Starbucks

Is changing a diaper in public a criminal offense?

This question arises in relation to a recent incident involving Alex and Ruth Burgos, who had to face questions from police after an incident that followed their decision to change their baby's diaper in the public area of a Denver Starbucks.

Is Starbucks the villain in this scenario? Not according to plenty of folks responding to the Burgos's tale on social media.

As noted by 9News, Alex and Ruth were at an East 49th Avenue Starbucks on a Friday evening when their one-year-old-son Thiago needed a diaper swap. There were no changing tables in the restroom, so Ruth took on this task in the main area of the coffeehouse.

While this was going on, the couple say a Starbucks employee tossed a rag in their direction and said to clean up afterward in what Alex took to be a belittling tone. Angry words followed, along with Alex dumping some coffee on the floor -- at which point the police were called.

No arrests were made in the incident, and Starbucks has offered an apology to the Burgoses. But when 9News posted the story on its Facebook page, the reaction was considerably more negative toward mom and dad than the coffee shop. Here's a sampling:

That is DISGUSTING. Why couldn't she just leave the Starbucks and change her child in her car?! Or perhaps be more prepared with a changing pad she could put down in the bathroom? Or do ANYTHING other than change her child's DIAPER in a room where people are EATING?! Ugh. People.

Appropriate? No. Sorry. Not appropriate to change a diaper where food/drinks are being served. Only a lazy/rude person would. Go to the car.

We live in a "I can do what I what" world. Screw everyone around me because I am the most important person that is walking the earth. Come on people. There is a time and place for things and changing dipers in the middle of ANY store is wrong. If you can't figure that out then are you sure you're smart enough to parent?

I have two kids and a third on the way. I've been in plenty of places with no changing table and I've always been able to do it on the floor or next to the sink. I would never change a #2 in a place that serves food, right there in front of everyone. #1, sure, who cares, but a #2 is just rude for the other customers.

That is gross. That is selfish. I am a dad, I have a 11 month old, so I still change a lot of diapers, I would never be so self serving as to change a dirty diaper on a table at eating level with the rest of the people around. You can not give me any good excuse. i don't care if there is no car to go to, and yes if you do have one you go to the car lazy - if you have no car you lay down a changing pad or blanket in the restroom or out on a area outside that is safe and do it there. No excuse. Should it be standard that the restrooms for public use be equipped with a fold out changing table, yeah sure. But to say that that is a reason to disturb other patrons with a view of feces and urine, not to mention the possible smell, while eating, on a table, in the mix of food and drink, is disgusting. What if the baby had started peeing or started playing with its poo like so many will do at certain ages? What would she do then to keep the other people from having their paid for private time from being ruined? We really have become a entitled society who thinks too much about our own easiness before the peace of others. It is just silly!!!

It gets me how "Entitled" many parents seem to feel and almost like its their RIGHT to do whatever THEY think is ok and must simply be accepted by everyone else. It's not ok, the rest of us have rights too and that includes the right to a clean, feces exposure free, food and drink establishment.

Probably not the response they were expecting. Here's the 9News video:

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
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