“Rumors of my untimely demise were possibly greatly exaggerated, even by me,” says J.C. Potts, owner of Pangea Piercing. Last month, Potts announced that Pangea would be permanently closing after a large number of negative testimonies about him on social media led to protests outside of the Liberty St. piercing shop. Now, he says in a video posted to Pangea’s YouTube account, that may not happen.
Accounts of Potts’s behavior by customers and former employees included instances of inappropriate commentary about the bodies of female customers and a video where he discusses “powerful folks out there doing what they can to try to convince white folks not to breed, and if they do to breed with a black man.” Potts has denied any racism or harassment.
In his latest video, posted in early October, Potts says he realized those protesting against him were “rather weak people” and that when he started going out in public again “the response was overwhelming … Only about two or three, well three people, had anything negative to say. Literally everyone else came up [to] shake my hand, pat me on the back, tell me how they really support me and believe in me.”
On Pangea’s Twitter account, Potts threatened legal action against those making claims, and appealed to an alt-right podcast to report on his plight. When a group of protesters arrived at the storefront to protest Potts’s potential return, Potts was seen wearing an army helmet and goggles, telling male protesters “these antifa girls are not going to give you sex … nothing makes girls turned off more than a male feminist.” He later tweeted about a male protester’s “feminine hands.”
In his video, Potts says he’s not sure what will happen, but in the meantime he has been doing piercings privately while the shop remains closed.
As of mid-October, Pangea remained as Potts left it, with the windows papered up and a single DVD copy of the film 1984 propped up in one of them.