A knife and blade store in Clifton, New Jersey is facing backlash after the owner placed a sign in the front window that reads "Speak English or Pay $10 Extra."
USA Today reports that the store, Cutters Edge, has been hit with negative reviews across the internet for the sign, which many have rightfully labeled as racist. In an interview, store owner Dave Feinberg said he put the sign up "out of frustration" because he "had something to get off my chest."
Feinberg put the sign up after he had a potential customer walk into the store who apparently didn't speak English.
Days after the sign was placed in the window, Feinberg received phone calls, negative Facebook comments, and hate on Twitter for the move.
"Some of the people are quite vulgar," said Feinberg, although he said it didn't take long for the comments to inspire him to take down the sign. Clifton is historically a city that's home to a large number of immigrants, many of which come from Latin America and the Middle East.
"People say 'I hope you go out of business and lose everything,'" Feinberg added.
He claimed he would never actually charge $10 extra to anyone who wouldn't speak English in his store, but the sign has still drawn plenty of criticism from locals. It's now been replaced by a sign which admittedly doesn't have the most spotless grammatical English—"please except out hart felt sadness it may have caused":
"Messages like this put us back centuries," said Clifton council member Rosemary Pino of the initial sign. "I can't see anyone on the council supporting this."
While most of the messages Feinberg received were critical of the sign, he's seen some people defend him. "Society has become hypersensitive," said Passaic, New Jersey mayor Hector Lora.