Restaurant in Greenville, Where Donald Trump's 'Send Her Back' Rally Was Held, Donates 100% of Proceeds to Help Immigrants

On Wednesday, President Donald Trump held a 2020 campaign rally in North Carolina that saw supporters chanting the words "send her back" after the U.S. leader renewed his racist attacks on Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar. The owner of a restaurant in that city has now revealed he will be donating 100 percent of the proceeds made that day to efforts to support immigrants.

In a Facebook post ahead of Trump's rally, Matthew Scully, who owns The Scullery restaurant in Greenville, shared a photo of a sign placed in his restaurant's window announcing that "100% of today's sales will be donated to [the] American Immigration Council in order to help with the immigration crisis at our southern border and to celebrate our diverse community."

"I had already been thinking about the president and especially about his comments over the past couple of days and it's just sort of difficult to wrap your head around it," Scully told Newsweek. "It brought up negativity and division in our community...and that's just kind of hard to sit and watch," he said. "So, we just thought this would be an opportunity to spread a positive message."

Scully could not have known when he posted the sign in his restaurant's window, however, that Trump would escalate his attacks on Omar, as well as fellow progressive Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Ayanna Pressley, who the U.S. leader had tweeted on Sunday should "go back" to the "crime-infested places from which they came."

The U.S. leader took further aim at the four congresswomen, who are all women of color, during the rally, calling them "hate-filled extremists." He then railed against Omar, who came to the U.S. as a refugee from Somalia when she was just eight years old, as the crowd of supporters chanted "send her back, send her back."

U.S. lawmakers and critics from around the world have condemned both Trump and his supporters over the racism displayed at the rally, with writer and activist Shaun King branding it "one of the single most racist moments in modern American political history."

Scully said he was "very disappointed" knowing that residents of his own community had been present at the rally, potentially taking part in the racist "send her back" chant.

"You know, especially with the racism that's in the media right now and the chants at the rally last night, it's just really embarrassing for my community, telling people to 'go back where they came from'," he said. "It just makes me sad and offended."

The restaurant owner, a father of three, said it also upset him to think of the migrant children being detained at the border.

"I have little kids and thinking about the kids at the border and the trauma they're going through... I just hate that for them... and thinking about the future and how they can shake that kind of trauma and get on with a successful life. It's just hard to imagine," he said.

Scully said that the sign in his window attracted hundreds of customers to his restaurant throughout the day on Wednesday, with The Scullery serving as many as 500 people and making more than $5,800 in sales, all of which will be donated to the American Immigration Council.

On its website, the American Immigration Council describes its mission as being to "strengthen America by shaping how America thinks about and acts towards immigrants and immigration and by working toward a more fair and just immigration system that opens its doors to those in need of protection and unleashes the energy and skills that immigrants bring."

It further states that it works to bring together "problem solvers and employs four coordinated approaches to advance change—litigation, research, legislative and administrative advocacy, and communications."

"With this synergy, the Council works to advance positive public attitudes and create a more welcoming America—one that provides a fair process for immigrants and adopts immigration laws and policies that take into account the needs of the U.S. economy," the council states.

On Facebook, many social media users praised Scully and his restaurant for supporting the immigrant community, with one customer writing: "Love this!!! So glad I chose to have breakfast there today! This is what America is about."

"Very Proud that the Scullery is a part of my neighborhood and community," another said. "Thank so much for all you do to help and give back. Greenville N.C. is lucky to have you, and we sure do love you!"

Of course, there were some critics, Scully acknowledged, with one apparent Trump supporter writing: "MAGA!!! Thanks for the heads up! If you really cared, you would donate to local homeless shelter or veterans. Now watch your business plummet!"

However, the majority of the feedback appeared to be positive, with old customers promising to return and new customers vowing to pay a visit to the Scullery.

"We received lots of great comments and phone calls and then maybe two or three negative phone calls," he said. Overall, Scully said, "it's been extremely positive."

Matthew Scully
Matthew Scully, the owner of The Scullery restaurant in Greenville, North Carolina, is donating 100 percent of his restaurant's proceeds from Wednesday, July 17, 2019, the same day President Donald Trump held his rally in the city, to efforts to support immigrants. Matthew Scully