Noble Square deli owner's social media post sparks protests

Protesters returned to a Noble Square deli on Sunday, upset over a social media post by the restaurant's owners, who challenged the Black Lives Matter movement and expressed anti-gay sentiments.

The owner of Nini's Deli posted a pro-police diatribe on Instagram Thursday, claiming George Floyd's death was a government hoax. Protesters have been outside the deli ever since. 

Police were on-hand Sunday as the protest outside the deli got tense when rival protesters came to the owners defense.

Chicago police acted as a human barrier between angry protesters and two women who stand by the controversial words spoken outside Nini’s Deli by the owner.

“Sick and tired of the bullyism, the intimidation in this country. It has to stop, okay?” said Edmee, who didn’t want to give her last name.

Friday the deli owner got on a microphone to say loud and clear...“Black Lives Matter kills more people than the Ku Klux Klan did, you understand that?”

“We’re a pro-choice community and I think that the rhetoric that was Friday through today just doesn’t represent the community,” said Duncan, who lives in the neighborhood but also didn’t want to give his last name.

Duncan said Friday’s speech started as a message of love.

“And slowly rhetoric moved from finding Jesus or spreading the message of Jesus toward homosexuality is evil and the Black Lives Matter movement is evil,” said Duncan.

But that’s what the ladies say is the truth.

“I don’t support it. They don’t represent me. I’m not about destruction,” said Edmee.

Noble Square this weekend is a neighborhood saying hate has no place here. A crowd has been here every day since Friday. Police in riot gear were called to diffuse the tense situation, yet Nini’s supporters say they won’t quit preaching their faith.

“Black Lives Matter, there may be well intended people in that group. I don’t know everybody.I’m gonna speak for the organization itself. I don’t believe the organization has good intentions, period. There’s too many lootings,” said Edmee.

One other point of contention – more than one person told us they saw at least four officers here who had their badge numbers covered. 

“And there are a number of them out here today that were asked to move the items covering the badges and did so after they were asked to, but the fact that they were there in the first place is unsettling,” said Duncan.

“I commend the officers for what they go through. They don’t have an easy job at all, but officers that don’t follow protocol and officers that unnecessarily harm people and show violence to take out their own aggression, it’s uncalled for,” said Franko who was among the protesters.