Olivehurst Community Shows Support for Restaurant Vandalized with Hate Speech Graffiti

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OLIVEHURST -- There's a sizzlingly steady pace of orders to keep up with most days around Olivehurst's Home Town Burger.

But Thursday more customers have put in orders for what that place puts out than ever before. Not just to satisfy their taste buds, but to satisfy a desire to show support for an innocent family victimized.

"They mark on it. 'No 911, no Arabs," something like that, and some dirty picture," said Home Town Burger owner Harnail Singh, as he described what was written around his business.

He found the disturbing words and images spray-painted around his one-window, two-person, two-table operation before he and his wife started work Wednesday morning.

"Maybe hate crime," he said. "Maybe they're thinking I'm Muslim or something, you know."

But he is not Muslim. He is of the Sikh faith.

Originally from Punjab, India Singh first got his green card in 1997 and has been a legal resident of the United States since 2005.

The vandals drew pentagrams, made crude references to male body parts and wrote the "n-word" on the restaurant's fence.

After 13 years in business, Singh can't imagine why this would happen now.

"I don't know," he said.

A mounting number of people have had to face that kind of uncertainty in our region in the last two weeks.

A string of incidents now being investigated as hate crimes started the weekend after President Trump's inauguration: vandalism at a mosque in Davis, an Islamic center in Roseville and at barbershop and meat market in Sacramento, an attack based on sexual orientation in the capitol city and a break-in at a Woodland sub shop where hateful words were left behind for the Sikh owners.

Diners in Olivehurst are using their appetites to consume hate.

"They're really nice people," said Candace Gibson as she picked up her "Home Town combo" for dinner. "They don't deserve something like that."

"With the riots and everything going on...it doesn't really surprise me, but at the same time I think it's kind of pathetic," Gibson said.

She says "disappointing" may be the best word to describe what's happened at Home Town Burger.

"I think it's very ignorant and it just displays how divided our country is right now. And I think we need to come together and quit this b.s." said Brent Shippy, faithful customer who slipped in right before closing with his daughter JoJo.

As for Singh? He isn't bitter and has this message for the vandals:

"Only one thing I would say, live in peace."