Joplin restaurant owner faces social media backlash after insulting comments
JOPLIN, Mo. — When the owner of Instant Karma and Eagle Drive-In, Jason Miller, posted on Facebook asking for customer feedback as he contemplated closing, he responded to comments with insults and profanity.
Despite this, though, one business owner says he understands.
“I don’t know him personally, and I don’t agree nor condone what he said, but there’s a bigger picture with businesses, there’s employees affiliated, there’s families involved and mistakes are made and then you have the backlash you get from that, boycott this and boycott that. Did you even step a foot in the place to support them,” asked Alex Menejias, local business owner of El Guapo’s Cigar & Pipe Lounge.
He says that he knows the struggle and stress that comes with keeping a small business open and that’s why he’s offered a 15% discount for customers who spend $10 or more at either Instant Karma or Eagle Drive-In.
“Not everybody’s perfect. I make mistakes every single day. Every business on this road will make a mistake. Doesn’t mean that you stop supporting that local business, and I’ll continue to do what I do, and I want people to come to my place, but if you don’t want to come because I’m of that standpoint, then fine,” said Menejias.
Shandie Reed enjoyed her past visit to Eagle Drive-In and says that while Miller’s comments were wrong in her eyes, she’s willing to forgive.
“Do I feel that people should continue to support his businesses, if they enjoy them? Please, by all means. I mean the gentleman’s obviously struggling, but I also have to admit that maybe his businesses closing might be what’s best for him,” said Reed.
Despite comments on Facebook, the parking lot here at Eagle Drive-In is still full and Miller says that as long as there is support for his businesses, they will stay open.
“He apologized for what he said. It’s time to move and it’s time to help businesses grow. It’s time to support downtown Joplin. It’s time for people in Joplin, the community, to put their money where their mouth is and keep our businesses open,” said Menejias.
El Guapo’s supports other local businesses regularly, offering discounts for spending money in downtown Joplin.
The promotion for Instant Karma and Eagle Drive-In will continue through Friday.
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