Olive Garden has a no flag policy that’s creating quite a stir. The tory has gained national attention because a local Kiwanis chapter was unable to accommodate their flags inside the restaurant. The incident occurred last week in Oxford, Alabama, when an 80-year-old club president, Marti Warren, was refused by the management to display or carry the country and the club items inside the establishment.
“This is not my country. This is not my country I grew up with.” Warren said in a statement. She added, “I was so angry. I felt like I had been slapped in the face.”
The company called Warren to apologize and explain because the Oxford restaurant does not have a private area, it could not accommodate a large flag or banner.
However, Warren and other Kiwanis club members are not accepting the apology. “I want them (customers) to stay away,” said Warren. Kiwanis Club supporters have peppered social media with criticism of Olive Garden.
“I have a grandson who fought in Iraq. He came back messed up,” said Warren “And I can’t have a flag to salute in his honor?” said Warren.
Olive Garden provided local ABC station 33/40 with this statement:
“Like all Americans we have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for the American flag and everything it symbolizes. In fact, we periodically provide American flag collar pins to our employees to wear while serving guests. We understand and appreciate the way some people have reacted to the situation in Oxford and we’re very sorry if this decision has caused them any concern. The Oxford Olive Garden does not have a private dining area. To be fair to everyone and avoid disrupting the dining experience for all other guests, they are unable to accommodate flags or banners of any type in the dining room.”
Warren and the local Kiwanis club members are thinking about staging a protest outside the restaurant.