On Friday, the Star Tribune reported that a number of businesses in the Twin Cities are cutting ties with Holy Land, a Mediterranean restaurant and grocery store, following the emergence of racist and anti-Semitic past social media posts from an employee.
“Majdi Wadi, CEO of Holy Land Brand Inc., which operates a Middle Eastern grocery store, restaurant and deli in northeast Minneapolis, apologized for the 2016 posting and revealed that it was written by his daughter, Lianne Wadi, the company’s catering director. She was fired,” said the report.
Majdi Wadi added that the posts had been written years ago, when his daughter was a teenager, and do not reflect who she is today. Nevertheless, he promised to conduct a full investigation into possible racial problems at the company.
“Lianne Wadi had posted multiple tweets in 2012 repeatedly using racial epithets and anti-Somali and anti-Semitic rhetoric,” reported Minnesota Public Radio. In one, she wrote, ‘#HighSchoolTaughtMe If your Somalian your automatically hated<3.’ She also said that a fake Hitler account ‘reads my mind.’ The original tweet said ‘Top 3 races you wish to eliminate. Ready, go! Jews, blacks, and the fats.’ ‘#IfIwasPresident I’d finish off what hitler started and rule the world,’ Lianne Wadi said in another tweet.”
“I was a teenager at the time (although my youth is not an excuse) and wasn’t educated on how the words I chose would affect and offend others, including myself,” wrote Lianne Wadi in her response to the scandal. “Over the years, I have grown and I have took it upon myself to learn and understand how my words and actions can affect other people.”
Several businesses have already cut ties with Holy Land. Midtown Global Market has terminated the company’s lease, and some other businesses that carry their food, like Seward Co-op, have removed their products.
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