San Mateo restaurant owner’s MAGA hat ban draws mixed reactions

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A San Mateo restaurant owner made headlines after Tweeting he will refuse to serve customers wearing a Make America Great Again (MAGA) hat, a phrase popularized by President Donald Trump.

J. Kenji López-Alt of Wursthall Restaurant stated in a since-deleted Tweet on Sunday: “It hasn’t happened yet, but if you come to my restaurant wearing a MAGA cap, you aren’t getting served, same as if you come in wearing a swastika, white hood, or any other symbol of intolerance and hate.”

In another Tweet that remains, López-Alt added, “MAGA hats are like white hoods except stupider because you can see exactly who is wearing them.”

The announcement of refusal of service has drawn mixed reactions. While the Tweet had many supporters, including left-leaning Bay Area residents who indicated an enhanced desire to patronize the restaurant, others cited problems with targeting citizens over their political beliefs. The San Francisco Chronicle reported that López-Alt “acknowledged that the business has received negative, even threatening, emails since the tweet.”

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