A Hispanic-owned restaurant in northern Colorado held a “white appreciation day” on Thursday as part of a promotional effort to mock the nation’s focus on race, and it was a big hit with customers looking to buck political correctness.
Edgar Antillon, who bought the Rubbin’ Buttz BBQ restaurant in January with Miguel Jiminez, said the response to their controversial holiday had been overwhelmingly supportive despite early death threats from some outraged users on social media.
“What I’ve learned is that a lot more people understand what we’re trying to do,” Antillon told the Washington Times.
Antillon said the promotion began as a joke when he and Jiminez were discussing the divisive nature of Black History Month and Hispanic Heritage Month. The two decided that a day in appreciation of whites would be an effective way to get their eatery’s name on the map and make a political statement at the same time.
The event was designed to bring people together and help mend racial tensions by highlighting the absurdity of focusing so heavily on race, both owners said.
“There’s still a lot of racial tension, but people understand that we’re all Americans,” said Antillon. “We all need to live together and just work together as Americans, and love and respect each other.”
“We’re all the same,” said one customer, who drove from nearly 50 miles away to attend the promotion. “It’s only in more recent years that we’ve got everybody separated. So, if this is bringing everybody together, it’s a good thing.”
When Jiminez and Antillon first announced their plan to hold a day in celebration of white heritage, they were blasted on social media as “racists” and white supremacists, despite both being Hispanic. Bomb threats, death threats, and social unrest were all a risk, but according to the local police chief, everything went smoothly on Thursday.
Those who predicted the event would essentially be a gathering of white supremacists and neo-Nazis proved to be wrong, as the crowd that gathered for the politically incorrect discount was largely of mixed races.
“I’m not part of a Hispanics-only club, I’m not part of a Latinos-only club, I’m part of an American club, and that’s what we’re part of — the United States of America,” Antillon said.
Support for “White Appreciation Day” was mixed on social media, as some minority advocates took the intent of the event a little too seriously:
@Bidenshairplugs there is no white appreciation day because every day in America is white appreciation day. stfu.
— mackenna stowell (@fancythedrummer) May 30, 2015
But overall, Antillon and Jiminez said the support they’d received was a sign that average Americans are tired of being divided by racial lines and enjoy a little politically incorrect humor once in a while.
If every day is white appreciation day, why are you so pissed off about one restaurant? ??? @fancythedrummer
— AdolfJoeBiden™ (@Bidenshairplugs) May 30, 2015
— Sparky McGuire (@Sparky_McGuire) June 11, 2015
Funny how black history month is ok but #whiteappreciationday is racism and we need to shut up. NO I will NOT shut up.
— SONOFDY (@SONOFDY1) May 9, 2015
— Michael R Shannon (@ReluctantUser2) June 12, 2015