Lafayette, LA - A local business owner is facing backlash for a sign he posted outside his business that some are calling racist, but he feels otherwise.
"It initially was a protest in my mind against Covid," said Louis Pizzolato, the owner of Coin and Treasure in Lafayette.
Pizzolatto says his protest stemmed from frustrations with the Communist Party of China, their handling of coronavirus and how they treat their citizens.
"When I started doing some research on what the Chinese communist party had done through the years and what it was about, it went down hill and that’s probably why I kept it up as long as I did," he said.
The viral sign, which has since been taken down, had been posted for over a year according to Pizzolato. He says he never intended to offend anyone in the Asian community. "It wasn’t anything at all about Asians. Asians never played a part in my mind. Chinese never played a part in my mind. What played a part in my mind was the Chinese communist party."
Pizzolato admits that given recent incidents across the country involving Asian discrimination, he should have taken the sign down sooner.
"That was probably my failing, the part about the Asian hate. In my mind, in my heart, I didn’t tie them together," he said.
He says he apologizes to anyone in the Asian community who may have been offended by the sign. "I want them to understand that it has no malice whatsoever to Asians. No malice to Chinese at all."
Pizzolato says he did re-write the sign to better reflect the message he was trying to get across, but has not made up his mind on if he will post it outside.