Maple Donuts, with stores in York, Pennsylvania, put up advertisements along the US Route 30 corridor, titled “Maple Donuts Takes a Stand Not a Knee,” according to reports.
The bakery is, of course, open to all, but owner Charlie Burnside opened up on why he decided to pull this move, to begin with.
Burnside, who comes from a line of immigrants and used to work as a bike doughnuts salesman, where one doughnut cost 20 cents, noted the nation deserves every respect for offering people across the globe every opportunity of success.
— WPMT FOX43 (@fox43) October 22, 2017
“America is the greatest country in the world,” Burnside said, as per York Daily Record. “And I think it’s a disgrace for those guys (NFL players) to do what they’re doing.”
Burnside noted that one of his ads was supposed to have a quote of President Donald Trump put up, and it is a quote that many will remember for generations to come.
The line was introduced by President Trump when he visited Huntsville, Alabama, and goes like this: “Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a b—- off the field right now! He is fired. He’s fired!’”
“I thought it was a great idea,” Burnside said, but noted he reconsidered because he “can’t curse on billboards.”
Aside from Burnside, ads seemed like a great idea to others as well. Jim Nelson, who is one of the store managers, explained the billboard is in accordance with every value the store itself has.
“We’re a very patriotic company. We fly the flag every day,” Nelson told WPMT. In addition, he pointed out the billboard is not in any way racial, like some bystanders would suggest.
“Absolutely not,” Nelson said. “Charlie and our company (are) 100 percent patriotic. It’s pushing the envelope a little bit, and Charlie’s personality is coming out in those billboards.”
This is not the first reaction of this sort the doughnut store has had. During the summer, the restaurant served free orange juice after it was announced that O.J. Simpson is being released from prison. This time around their billboard read: “O.J. is Free.”
The sign triggered a massive backlash as a result:
“I wish the owner of Maple Donuts wouldn’t use race as a wedge issue,” one critic wrote.
?? BILLBOARD IS ABOUT PATRIOTISM NOT RACE!!! ??
— ??Candice?? (@4AllFreeSpeech) October 23, 2017
However, it also provoked a wave of support:
@MapleDonuts if I’m ever in York I will stop by. Love your ref to taking a stand and your patriotism! God bless you!
— Vickie Keller (@KellerVjlk) October 23, 2017
Awesome to you Maple donuts??! To the NFL players you are over privileged and over paid for playing games, so stand up??
— Forever Trumper (@AnYou007) October 23, 2017
Joe Oaster, who is a veteran and business owner in the region, had every respect for the doughnut store’s billboards.
“He takes advantage of current events and incorporates it with his advertising, and he’s done some really cool things, and you can`t blame him for that,” Oaster said. “That’s good business … I don’t see race in that at all.”
“We can all look at an apple and see different things.”