A Huntington restaurant owner is under fire for comments he made Monday afternoon about people who participated in a Black Lives Matter march that passed through downtown Huntington.
Luigi Petrone, co-owner of Tutto Pazzo, referred to marchers as “a bunch of kids, little punks, they look like little animals, savages,” he said.
“They knew if they come into Huntington, they’re going to have a problem,” he said as the marchers moved through the downtown area. “They came in and they came out,” Petrone said. “They saw a bunch of us. With a bunch of watermelons we were going to throw at them,” he said.
Tracey Edwards, former town board member and Long Island Regional Director of the NAACP, wrote in response, “You need to apologize to the rest of the business owners in the village trying to get their business back up and running.
“We are all trying to unite and then here you come with your video. You need to make another video and don’t be shy. Apologize to all of us.
“As a Huntington resident, I – like many others have spent hard earned money in your restaurant. Never again.
“As a NAACP leader, I would like to meet with you along with the president of the Huntington Village Business Owners Association, the Huntington Chamber of Commerce, and the Huntington town supervisor.”
One commenter wrote, “I’ve never been to his restaurant but he should really just close the doors now… he just shot himself in the foot. How could anyone ever set foot in his restaurant ever again.”
Pastor Danny Rivera of Huntington Assembly of God wrote, “I marched with these kids today. They were amazing and should be celebrated. This is terrible.”
The marchers, a mix of ages and races, started at the Big H center, came up New York Avenue, and moved along several streets in Huntington, including a stop at Town Hall to kneel in honor of George Floyd, who died after he was arrested in Minneapolis last week. His death has provoked outrage and demonstrations around the country.