A burger joint in Illinois is receiving a lot of attention after one customer called the restaurant out for displaying a controversial bumper sticker, which some are calling offensive.
Sam Schnelle, a customer at Gross’ Burgers in Danville, Ill., took to Facebook on Friday to share a photo of the sticker in question, which read: “If you can’t read this, thank a Marine.” The message pointed to Arabic writing and displayed the acronym for the United States Marine Corp. But Schnelle called it “absolutely disgusting,” while others say that it is a sign of “racism.”
“Come for the burgers, stay for the blatant racism!” one person commented on the post. Another wrote, “If you can read it, thank yourself for being a multicultural human and not a xenophobic garbage human.”
One regular even credited the sticker’s message as the reason that their family would no longer be going to Gross’ Burgers.
“Please consider that our community is not just for those who are native-born English speakers,” the customer wrote. “Let's move forward and make Danville welcoming and inclusive for everyone who wants to build it up and make it great.”
When Schnelle asked the restaurant’s owner, Brad Gross, to take the sticker down, he allegedly refused.
A number of people have supported Gross and have argued that the bumper sticker is “not racism.” Some even suggest that the message has been misunderstood.
“It's not about speaking another language. Be fluent in as many [ways] as you want. That's great. But the sign is about being under a Muslim law or Sharia law & government that would make us write Arabic and abide by their laws,” one person wrote. “We need to thank our military we are not forced to be under that type of law.”
Another person echoed the sentiment and said, “Learn the history of the restaurant, Marine owned and operated. Get over it.”
Schnelle tells Yahoo Lifestyle that it wasn’t her first time at the restaurant, but it was the first time that she noticed the sticker. Gross told Illinois station WCIA that the sticker has been on display for 10 years.
“That bumper sticker has been in my restaurant for more than a decade and a Marine that served in Iraq brought it in and asked me to put it up,” Gross explained. “I said, ‘Yea, sure, go put it up,’ and it’s been there for all these years.”
Yahoo Lifestyle wasn’t able to get in touch with Gross for additional comment. But, by the looks of the business’s Facebook page, it seems that the owner is still getting plenty of support. According to one supporter, Gross even sold out of burgers on Sunday as a result of free publicity.
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle: