Michigan business owner targeted over Nazi symbol posts - WNEM TV 5

Michigan business owner targeted over Nazi symbol posts

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Source: CNN Source: CNN
Source: CNN Source: CNN
Source: CNN Source: CNN

A Michigan business owner is defending himself from social media posts that has some calling him a Nazi sympathizer.
A profanity in white spray paint was sandwiched in between "get out Nazi scum."

"The public is crucifying me.” Aaron VanArsdale said

The words of vandals come in response to Facebook photos of VanArsdale, the co-owner of Craft Draft 2 Go in Kalamazoo. 

"I'm not a Nazi, I'm not a white supremacist. I'm trying to think of all the names I've been called,” he said.

It's not just on the windows of his bar. Social media screens lit up with calls to boycott his business.

Reporter: It's just not one photo, so this is what people are seeing.

VanArsdale: Yeah, I understand.

Reporter: So, how do you explain that?

VanArsdale: Again, I’m not a Nazi. Bad humor.

One of those photos shows a swastika on VanArsdale’s forehead. Another picture shows him doing the Nazi salute.

"I'm not a Nazi. I don't support hate groups,” he said.

Reporter: You see how that's confusing when there's a photo of the Star of David with blood on it with swastika.

VanArsdale: Sure, sure.

Reporter: So, how do you explain those photos that we saw?

VanArsdale: Bad judgment, attempt at humor that didn't turn out so well. You know, I'm not trying to make excuses. That's what it was. I don't stand for that, I'm not pro-hate groups. I'm not in any extreme groups.

VanArsdale describes himself as pro-American and said he stands for equal rights.

"You know there's hot topics that I should probably just stay away from you know as a lot of people should. It gets misunderstood,” he said.

Since VanArsdale deleted his Facebook page, it's unclear when these pictures were originally posted. He said the images went up five or six years ago.

VanArsdale said his business partner will take over the bar for now.

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