A Dairy Queen in a Wisconsin town triggered outrage recently.
The sign reads, “This restaurant is politically incorrect” before noting that staff members say, “Happy Easter,” “Merry Christmas,” and “God Bless America,” WDJT-TV reported last month.
The franchise owner, Kevin Scheunemann, says that the restaurant salutes the U.S. flag, gives thanks to the troops, and offers free sundaes to veterans on Veterans Day.
“I felt the sign was appropriate to hang in terms of being transparent about the views of the owner and staff,” he said, adding that “those kinds of values and principles are becoming controversial in society.”
Scheunemann said that he starting hanging the sign up in front of the restaurant four years ago after a customer complained about the music in the shop. After posting the sign, he said he hasn’t experienced other problems.
A person from Oregon posted a photo of the sign, which says “In God we trust,” at the bottom.
Some people complained and commented to Dairy Queen’s corporate headquarters, posting comments on its social media pages.
“Corporate. Please do not make a statement that goes against Freedom of Speech and Religion. The 1st Amendment is what makes this country great,” wrote one Facebook user in support of the sign.
Some locals agree with his decision.
“He posted it on the door so you see it before you walk in,” said April Serwe, who owns a nearby bar. “You don’t have to walk in if you don’t agree with it.” “In this small community, I don’t think it’s a problem,” added local resident Liz Torrison. “We’re all just liking each other and having fun.”
The company, according to a Dairy Queen spokesperson, “does not encourage our independently owned and operated franchisees to post non-business related messages in their locations or on their external reader boards. The sign expresses the views of this independent owner only and does not speak for ADQ [American Dairy Queen] Corporation or any of our other independent franchise owners. We expect our franchisees and employees to treat every person who walks through our doors with the utmost dignity and respect. Nothing less is acceptable,” Fox News reported.
Scheunemann said that it’s been good for his business’ bottom line.
“I got people driving hours to take a picture with (the) sign,” Scheunemann told GoMN.