Faraci’s Pizza in Ferguson, Missouri, is like thousands of other family owned pizzerias across the nation. It is a small place where families with young children can go for Saturday night pizza, pasta, or sandwich at a great price. It is a place where ball teams can gather for some pizza and a cold beer to celebrate victory or nurse defeat. It is the kind of place that is always an anchor of the neighborhood. Joseph and Dorothy Faraci started their business in 1968 in a building with just three tables. They quickly moved to a larger place where they had twenty. They retired in 1998, but Faraci’s Pizza kept going strong. It is an easy recipe, great food at a reasonable price.
The neighborhood has changed over the years, but like most small businesses, Faraci’s has a core group of loyal customers who always come back. But there is someone new in the neighborhood: the protester.
Protesting is not inherently bad. America’s founding was a giant protest against King George and England. Great things have been achieved by Americans marching in the streets demanding change. But like the neighborhood surrounding Faraci’s Pizza, protesters have changed too. The new breed of protester is here in the form of Michael Brown supporters. Oh there are still some who believe in Martin Luther King’s brand of protest, some who may even have marched with him and still believe that non-violence is the best and quickest way to reach the hearts and minds of the people. But they are becoming vastly outnumbered by the newcomers. The ones who believe the ends justify the means. The ones who believe they are entitled to throw things, destroy property, beat people, and if necessary, shut down businesses. Is this where future community organizers get their start?
Recently, as a group of protesters began to gather in the street and outside on the sidewalk in front of the restaurant, owner Jim Marshall stepped out the front door to ask them to move as they were blocking customer’s entrance into the building. Words were exchanged, and some threats were issued. Marshall went back inside the store but protesters began surrounding the building and peering in the windows. At this point, Marshall got his gun and put it in his pocket. Someone looking in the window saw him do this and announced it to the crowd outside. Someone promised Marshall that “we are gonna get you”.
The next night, swarms of protesters gathered outside of Faraci’s Pizza and Ferguson Police were called in to hold them back. Over the course of the next few days, the restaurant was peppered with fake pizza orders over the phone, and regular customers had to knock on the door to be let in because of the crowds outside.
The “protesters” however, may have found a new tactic in their efforts to shut down businesses that perhaps do not support their version of “justice”. The local media was contacted and was told that Jim Marshall had threatened the crowd by pointing the gun at them. This is absolutely untrue, but the protesters have learned well at the foot of their hero Barack Obama. Tell a lie enough times to enough people and they will believe it. The Marshalls have had to contact the media on their own behalf to set the record straight.
The story of Faraci’s Pizza must be told because it is a real account of what is going on. The agenda is no longer about “peaceful” protest, and dialogue between sides with differing opinions. The agenda is not even about the death of Michael Brown anymore. The agenda is one of fear, violence, and intimidation by those who now have no fear themselves of saying that their ultimate goal is the take-over of the city of Ferguson. It appears that protesters are the only ones who have rights. Honest, hard-working business owners, like the Marshalls, do not have the right to protect themselves, their homes, and their businesses from roving bands of thugs intent on shutting everything and everyone down that they don’t like. The reason? They are racist, of course. But be careful protesters, look in the mirror, and the racism you claim to abhor may very well be staring right back at you.
Since the incident, the Marshalls have had many friends and supporters come to the restaurant to have a meal and show solidarity. Maybe even to send a message that the “justice” mob has targeted the wrong business.
At the height of the tension last week, someone stood outside of Faraci’s Pizza with a sign that said something ridiculous about “racist pizza”.
I’ll take mine with pepperoni and sausage.