To avoid controversy and lost customers, the owner of a Minnesota restaurant that specializes in African cuisine has covered up the word “Africa” on signs outside her eatery all because of bad publicity due to the world-wide Ebola crisis.
Kellita Whisnant, owner of Mama Ti’s African Kitchen in Brooklyn Park, Minn., has decided to remove links to Liberia and Africa from her restaurant as the Ebola crisis grows in that African nation.
“This African name that brought people in before, is now hurting me,” the restauranteur told Minneapolis-St.Paul’s Fox affiliate. “We get the jokes, the ridicule.”
Whisnant is still worried that simply covering up words on signs and menus won’t be enough. She is also taking pains to inform patrons that she only uses local sources of foodstuffs despite her African-themed menu.
The Minnesota Department of Health also jumped in to assist the restaurant in its quest to help “eradicate that stigma” building against Mama Ti’s African Kitchen.
“We know for certain that it is not transmitted through food,” Aaron Devries of MDH said in a statement.
Many liberal commentators are beginning to take up the claim that “Ebola hysteria” is the newest form of “racism” against Africa nations.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter: @warnerthuston. Email the author at email@example.com.