A restaurant owner in Danville, Illinois has been facing intense criticism for a bumper sticker that he has posted inside the restaurant. The owner of Gross’ burgers, Dan Gross said that the criticism is because of a bumper sticker that says If you can’t read this thank a Marine and in Arabic says Allahu Akbar. Allahu Akbar means god is great in Arabic. The bumper sticker is one among several dozen patriotic items located throughout the restaurant which employs several Marines. One of the more well-known patriotic items at the restaurant is the front of a jeep hanging over the cashier’s spot. The bumper sticker has been in the restaurant for over ten years and was given to Mr. Gross by another Marine while he was serving in Iraq. Up until April 2019, no one had complained about the bumper sticker.

Sam Schnelle who went to the restaurant in April 2019 noticed the bumper sticker and took offense to it. In a post on Facebook which had more than 800 shares, she stated f— Grossburgers. Absolutely disgusting. Ms. Schnelle stated that she did contact the restaurant afterwards and asked them if they could remove the sticker but did not receive a positive response from the manager. Ms. Schnelle said that while she has been to Gross’ Burgers before, this was the first time she noticed the sign. There have been both comments supporting the restaurant and comments supporting Ms. Schnelle’s views on her Facebook post. Why are all these Americans cheering for ignorance? The ability to speak more than one language should be applauded. Pathetic, stated one comment on Ms. Schnelle’s Facebook post. Another customer stated that the bumper sticker was blatant racism. One person stated that it was not about ignorance of another language but about not being under Sharia law or a government that would force people to follow Sharia law. Some supporters have stated that the statement on the bumper sticker was not racism at all. Supporters of Gross’ Burger, including the American Legion Riders from Danville Post 210 who have on their rides show their support by trying to stop there to eat. According to Pam Nichols, when she visited the restaurant there was a lone protestor there dressed in attire that would have gotten her in trouble if she was in an Islamic country.

In one review on Tripadvisor, the customer stated that there were racist signs hanging up in the restaurant. While another customer showed support for the restaurant when he said his party came to the Marine owned and operated restaurant in Danville, Illinois because of the bumper sticker complaints. There have been protests going on while there was counter-protestors coming from around the area and eating at the restaurant. Gross has stated that he has no intention to take down the bumper sticker. There have been days because of this controversy that Gross’ Burger has sold out of burgers early. Gross’ Burgers has a 4.5 rating out of 5 stars on Tripadvisor and a 4.5 rating out of 5 stars on Yelp.