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Sound Off: What Do You Think of the Domenico’s Sign?

The sign in front of the restaurant is courting attention—and controversy.

Michael Pollice is known for h on Route 19 in Cranberry.

This week, one sign in particular is grabbing people’s attention—and headlines.

On Monday, Pollice erected a sign that said “Flying Remote Control Airplanes into Muslim People at the Mall is My Thing.”

The sign—which was featured on several local news stations and even, Pollice said, on CNN—ignited a firestorm of responses ranging from outrage over the sign to support of its message. Several readers also contacted Cranberry Patch about the sign, among them Dr. Amesh Adalja.

“While it is Mr. Pollice's inalienable right to express such sentiments, for a business to potentially disillusion consumers by such a crude stunt causes me to question the business acumen of the owners of Domenico's,” he wrote in an email to Patch.

“I anticipate that his actions will trigger a boycott of some sort from citizens and he—and the other owners of Domenico's—will suffer the consequences of the emanations from a primitive mind.”

Pollice, who is one of the family-run eatery’s owners, said he meant no harm by the sign.

“I didn’t think it would cause this much controversy,” he said. “It doesn’t really mean anything. I just thought the words went well together. It was stupid and fun.”

While he has received some negative comments—including a woman who he said came into the restaurant and yelled at him—Pollice said most of the responses have been positive. Some people even have stopped by Domenico's to pose for photos in front of the sign, he said.

“Most people who come here were fine with it,” he said. “Our customers have been 99 percent positive.”

Pollice was adamant he is not a racist or intolerent of other religions. The sign was something he dreamed up while sleeping, he said, and it had nothing to do with the Memorial Day holiday.

“It was a joke,” he said. “I had no ulterior motive, I just like it.”

The attention also won’t make him shy away from posting more controversial signs in the future. By Saturday, Pollice had a new sign posted in front of the restaurant.

This one reads, “If This Sign Offends You, Call a Dead Soldier's Parents to Complain.”

What do you think of Pollice’s sign? Is it freedom of speech? Would the sign cause you to quit frequenting the restaurant? Do you take it as a sign of religious intolerance, or like Pollice, do you see it as a joke? Leave your opinion in the comment section.

Jim Bilka May 31, 2012 at 10:14 AM
Stereotype muslims, stereotype white people, wanna explain the difference getalife? I can't wait to hear this one.
ron mexico May 31, 2012 at 11:23 AM
first thanks to the Patch and especially Jessica who does such fine job of putting the Patch together, she is a very fair journalist and is destined for bigger and better things. I really learned about people after this experience there are some who really believe in the First Amendment and some who will attack and just spill their hatred while on the web because they also are entitled to free speech. Thanks to the people who had my back you are what makes this all worth it. Wednesday I met with a few people who wanted to speak to me and we did. They listened to me and I heard what they had to say, no screaming no calling names just a talk between human beings. From that I learned that my sign did cause real hurt to the Muslim people and a lot of others who know them as people. I apologized to them about my insensitive words and just like I did not like what people who don't know me made me feel like poop I made them feel even worse. By meeting and putting a face to the people I had hurt made me feel like a Jagoff. To the people who came and spoke with me I will always be indebted to you for showing me how real people of faith behave towards those who do not know any better, your kindness and understanding was awesome. They invited my wife and I to visit them and promised they would not beat the poop out of me. LOL Michael Pollice
Dweezer May 31, 2012 at 03:59 PM
Kudos to you Michael. It takes a lot to admit your mistake and you have done it well. I, too, have allowed this issue to bring out a negative side in myself that I'm not at all proud of. Certainly, we all have, and should have, varying views on life and politics but not to the point where people are hurt or made to feel uncomfortable. I applaud your apology, hope that you will accept mine and look forward to stopping buy and meeting you sometime. Hopefully we will find something positive we like about each other and can build on that, rather than on negative perceptions.
Janet Konig June 01, 2012 at 03:11 PM
I have known the Pollice and Lombardo families for a long time!!! They are wonderful people, and nothing Mike puts on his sign is going to change what I know and love about these folks!!! The apology was a good thing to do - and Mike is a good person! No surprise.........
marianne jordan May 19, 2013 at 02:17 AM
Mike was apologetic. So it's done.He will be more cautious and not take the chance of being misinterpreted. It is his sign and his italian food is the best of the best around . Get over it ! Cindy Jordan

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