“Black Olives Matter.”
That’s the slogan used by a restaurant in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to promote their new tuna and black olive tapenade dish.
After generating controversy in July for using that play on words on the restaurant’s sign, Paisano’s Italian restaurant has chosen to sell merchandise using the same play off the “Black Lives Matter” movement’s slogan.
Though Paisano’s owner Rick Camuglia reportedly agreed to take down the message from Paisano’s marquee back in July after complaints from the Albuquerque NAACP, among others, he apparently sees no problem in making quick cash from the BLM catchphrase.
“I think if that offends some people, a statement about black olives, that somebody needs to re-evaluate their politically correct meter,” Camuglia told KRQE News 13 in July.
As advertised on the restaurant’s Facebook page, you can buy T-Shirts emblazoned with the slogan “Black Olives Matter” for 20 bucks a pop. The black, green, and white design has the letter O replaced with an olive, and the letter V replaced with a slice of pizza. As of this week, you can also purchase one-size-fits-all caps featuring the cribbed phrase for $25.
“The Slogan that started it all!” reads the description of the tee on Paisano’s vendor site. “Be a part of it instead of a bystander.”
After it was announced yesterday that Wilmore’s Nightly Show had been canceled, Paisano’s was quick to poke fun at him, too, adding the message “Hey Larry-A Wilmore! Luigi Albanse Issa Hiring!” to their store’s sign.
Days after Paisano’s began selling the merchandise, the phrase “Black Olives Matter” began trending on Twitter, drawing a variety of outrage and Olive-related photoshopped pictures. Dozens of negative and positive reviews relating to the slogan have been posted to the restaurant's Facebook page. Paisano's maintain's a 3.9 star rating on Facebook and 3.5 star Yelp score.