A man wearing a t-shirt with the words “Jesus Saves” was told by a mall security guard he would have to remove the t-shirt or leave the Mall of America in a video that went viral on social media over the weekend.
The video shows the back of the man’s yellow shirt that said “Jesus is the only way,” with the graphic “coexist” made with symbols of other religions. “Coexist” has a black line through it.
The video posted to multiple platforms and viewed more than a million times shows a security guard at the mall located in Bloomington, Minnesota, telling the man, “If you want to shop here you need to take off that shirt.”
The man asked, “What is wrong with my t-shirt?”
“It is religious soliciting. There is no soliciting allowed on mall property, which is private property,” the guard replied.
Another part of the video showed the same guard also saying, “Jesus is associated with religion and it is offending people. People have been offended.”
Man gets told to leave mall of America because his shirt said Jesus Saves pic.twitter.com/Tpy4qfx1x9
— Clown World ™ (@ClownWorld_) January 17, 2023
The Daily Mail reports the video, which was recorded on Jan. 7, has sparked outrage against the mall online.
One Twitter user wrote: “I automatically assumed this was overseas, but it’s right here in America.”
“If I ever go to the Mall of America again, I’m wearing the biggest Jesus shirt I can find,” another user wrote.
Pastor Chase Thompson wrote: “He should sue them into oblivion. This wouldn’t have happened anywhere in the U.S. until very recently, and it certainly wouldn’t have happened if he’d had a pride shirt on and even 50 people complained.”
One group called Bloomington Patriots is organizing a protest at the mall on Feb. 4 and is asking people to wear their own “Jesus Saves” shirts.
In a statement to KARE-TV, the Mall of America confirmed that the man, who’d previously been issued a temporary trespass notice for solicitation, was eventually allowed to stay inside the mall and wasn’t required to change his shirt.
“The guest referenced in the video was approached by Mall of America security on January 7, 2023. One week prior, he was issued a 24-hour trespass for soliciting guests. After a brief interaction, the guest was not required to change his shirt and was allowed to remain at the Mall,” the statement said.
The man had been previously asked to leave the mall because he was preaching, according to The Mail.
The mall prohibits inappropriate attire, including apparel that “has obscene language, obscene gestures or racial/religious/ethnic slurs that are likely to create a disturbance.”
It also forbids “loitering, engaging in soliciting, blocking storefronts, hallways, skyways, fire exits or escalators, or walking in groups in such a way as to inconvenience others.” And it also prohibits “picketing, demonstrating, protesting or petitioning.”
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