A national restaurant chain shouldn't have to be told not to turn the country's ugly racist past into a kitschy décor item, but like your Trump-supporting uncle, Joe's Crab Shack still has a few lessons to learn, apparently. A Roseville, Minnesota, location of the restaurant chain is under fire for using a place mat that insensitively makes light of the 1895 hanging of a black man in Grosbeak, Texas. In the photo, a crowd of white onlookers surround the individual and the placement features a not-funny-at-all text bubble coming from the executioner's stand that reads, "All I said was 'I don't like gumbo!'" Gross.
The mat was put into the spotlight after two black customers, Tyrone Williams and Chauntyll Allen, went to the location for a birthday dinner and ended up walking out in disgust. The Minneapolis NAACP has subsequently gotten involved, releasing a statement and demanding an apology, the removal of the place mat (which has happened), and a charitable donation from the chain's parent company. Speaking to USA Today, Allen says, "I have felt sick to my stomach and stressed out since seeing that image on the table where I was planning to eat my food." Twitter, too, is not having it:
Joe's Crab Shack is fucking disgusting— 3|31. (@615markisha) March 11, 2016
This kind of nonsense is what keeps my kind up at night: Joe’s Crab Shack used photo of black man’s hanging as decor https://t.co/pllos0DPCH— Abigail Arrington (@AbbyArrington) March 11, 2016
Really Joe's Crab Shack?!? How the fuck does "mistakes" like this even happen at a fucking crab shack?!? You make... https://t.co/SG0H93qpMZ— Quinton Wilde (@WTFQdiddy) March 11, 2016
Now I have a better reason to not go to Joe's Crab Shack. Food sucks anyway— carlos2316 (@carlos2316) March 11, 2016