A customer left an Islamophobic message on a dollar bill stamped in bright, red ink to taunt restaurant workers Wednesday at a suburban Chicago Middle Eastern restaurant. It’s fired up the community, which is rallying to support the family-owned eatery. The customer, described as a middle-aged white man, handed the bill to an employee at 4Sisters Sweets and Catering and left without speaking at the Middle Eastern/Mediterranean restaurant in southwest suburban Oak Lawn, according to Oak Lawn Patch. The message read “No Muslim Immigrants in USA.”
That’s led a local group to organize an event condemning the message and encouraging diners to eat there this weekend. The so-called “cash mob” starts today and lasts through Saturday. Organizers are encouraging diners to patronize the restaurant: “We want to shower them with love and our financial support.”
The restaurant opened more than a year ago to serve the southwest suburbs, which is home to a large population of Muslims, including those who worship at the Mosque Foundation in nearby Bridgeview. The Southwest Chicago Diversity Collaborative is organizing the event.
It was a small, yet ugly gesture, especially under the backdrop of new anti-immigration policy. However, restaurant owner Maya Hamed feels safe, thanks to the community’s support. She told NBC Chicago: “It’s his home, it’s our home, it’s for everybody. We should be uniting, not dividing.”