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Shelby County businesses felt the impact Thursday of the “A Day Without Immigrants” protest, when activists called on immigrants to protest President Donald Trump's tough stance on immigration by staying home from work or school on Thursday. That also included not shopping and not eating out, in an effort to highlight the vital role they play in U.S. society.
Although several merchants would not comment on the situation, the impact could be seen locally, with some ethnic businesses closed for the day, such as Fiesta Mexicana, Mexico Lindo and numerous businesses in Midland Shopping Center. Other restaurants sported signs on the door that apologized for the lack of services. At Claudia Sanders Dinner House a sign read that there would be no salad or soup bar, due to “unusual circumstances,” resulting from a lack of kitchen help.
One local Hispanic restaurant owner, who did not wish to be identified, said that while he agreed with the sentiment, he thought it could have been handled better, and his establishment remained open Thursday.
Though other Hispanic restaurants, such as La Cocina de Mama and El Nopal, were open management declined to comment on the situation.
The protest, which gained momentum on social media, arose in response to President Trump's vows to crack down on illegal immigration and his executive order, since suspended by a federal judge, to temporarily block entry to people from seven Muslim-majority countries.