In Ocala, Florida the family that runs an ice cream shop has been trying incredibly hard to repair their reputation after an employee dressed as an ice cream cone was mistaken as a member of the Ku Klux Klan, reports MSNBC.
The owners of the Ice Cream Family Corner and Sandwiches, which is located on a busy intersection, says that the business they opened three months ago is getting attacked by the rumor mill after their white hooded ice cream mascot was misidentified as a member of the KKK.
According to Jose Cantres, rumors are swirling on Facebook about the cone- and through word of mouth, employees have heard that potential customers are steering clear of the shop to avoid the mascot.
According to Ocala.com:
Liza Diaz, who manages the store for Cantres and co-owner Jesus Diaz, said an employee at the bank where she does business told her a co-worker was so frightened by the white dollop patrolling the street corner that she called her husband crying and refused to drive through the intersection.
But close up, the costume looks nothing like the familiar white hooded figures that holds such emotional significance for many.
Its fluffy white top is flecked with colored sprinkles, and it curls slightly at the tip like a ice cream scoop would. The rest of the costume is brown, like a waffle cone.
The owners have complained about how the mascot has hurt their business, but MSNBC offers a different perspective:
The controversy attracted plenty of media attention. During the lunch hour Tuesday, there were more reporters and cameras in the shop than there were customers.