A Texas ramen restaurant was covered in racist graffiti after its owner spoke out on CNN against Gov. Greg Abbott’s (R) decision to lift coronavirus restrictions in the state.
Mike Nguyen told ABC affiliate KSAT 12 that he found red graffiti Sunday on the windows of his San Antonio restaurant, called Noodle Tree.
Photos of the vandalism show several phrases written on the windows, including “no mask,” “kung flu,” “commie,” “hope u die” and “ramen noodle flu.”
Noodle Tree delayed its regular noon opening by an hour to address “an incident,” according to a Facebook announcement.
The San Antonio Police Department confirmed to The Hill on Monday that officers responded to criminal mischief at the restaurant's address on Sunday morning.
The vandalism came days after Nguyen’s interview with CNN on Wednesday, when the restaurant owner called Abbott’s decision to remove the state’s mask mandate “selfish” and “cowardly.”
“Greg Abbott doesn’t have the Texas people’s interests in play,” Nguyen told the network. “He only cares about himself at this point.”
Nguyen kept Noodle Tree closed for almost six months before reopening with COVID-19 restrictions because bills were piling up.
Texas Gov. Abbott’s decision to lift the mask mandate is “selfish,” says Mike Nguyen, the owner of a restaurant in San Antonio who is battling cancer.— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) March 10, 2021
“Dropping the mask mandate will not help the economy, will not help us open. And a lot of us feel he's putting…us in danger.” pic.twitter.com/wDWDPtH9a4
Earlier this month, Abbott announced that the mask mandate and restrictions on business capacity would be dropped, prompting criticism, including from President BidenJoe BidenTrump endorses challenger in Michigan AG race On The Money: Democrats get to the hard part Health Care — GOP attorneys general warn of legal battle over Biden's vaccine mandate MORE, who called Texas’s and Mississippi’s plans to loosen restrictions “Neanderthal thinking.”
The governor's decision also prevents local governments from implementing or keeping their own mask mandates. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) filed a lawsuit against the city of Austin after officials there used a workaround to keep a mandate in place. A judge sided with the city in her initial ruling on the case.
Businesses can maintain masking requirements in their establishments.
Updated on March 15 at 9:13 a.m.