The owner of a Pennsylvania brewery decided to remove a sign that he had made in order to attract customers after it was construed as being “xenophobic.”
The owner of Highway Manor Brewery in Camp Hill, Johnnie Compton III has been making creative signs in order to keep customers informed of new methods of operations during the coronavirus pandemic, according to Pennlive.
Controversial sign on central Pa. brewery gone after owner says joke was ‘misconstrued’ https://t.co/y7XhVogEMC
— PennLive.com (@PennLive) December 28, 2020
Compton said that after Democratic state Gov. Tom Wolf announced his most recent mandates regarding limits on indoor gatherings and a ban on indoor dining, he was trying to find something other than coronavirus to write on the sign, according to Pennlive.
“I’m sick of hearing about COVID,” Compton told the outlet.
After discussions with his staff, Compton reportedly settled on writing “TO GO ONLY BLAME CHINA” on the sign, along with the updated hours for his business and his phone number. Though the sign was placed outside on Wednesday, Compton told Pennlive he only started to receive phone calls and messages from people complaining about the sign around the weekend.
“SO ignorant and xenophobic,” one person reportedly wrote online. The person also added that they would not be returning to support the business when they eventually re-open for indoor dining.
“This is ridiculous. I’m not racist in any way,” Compton explained. “Our bar is a hip hop bar. It’s not a racist establishment,” he added. (RELATED: Pennsylvania Trump Voter Charged With Voter Fraud)
“People are misinterpreting it, clearly,” Compton told Pennlive. “We’re not trying to offend people. We’re just trying to have fun with it,” he added.
“It’s just a factual statement that got misconstrued,” Compton told the outlet.