A person at the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota was recently asked to take off a t-shirt with the inscription "Jesus Saves" by security guards, as they stated that some shoppers were offended by it.
Video footage of the incident reveals that the back of the shirt displayed a crossed-out Coexist symbol with the text "Jesus is the only way" printed beneath it.
“Jesus is associated with religion and it’s offending people,” one of the guards in the video advised the man.
After a conversation with the security guards, the unidentified person was informed that the shirt was not permitted to be worn inside the mall.
“Again sir, it is religious soliciting,” the security guard said to him in the video captured on January 7. “There is no soliciting allowed on mall property, which is private property.”
I automatically assumed this was overseas, but it's right here in America. pic.twitter.com/Q79eUCG7xh
— John Mason (@LivingGodsTruth) January 12, 2023
In the widely circulated video, the individual acknowledged that he had previously been asked to leave the mall for "preaching the gospel." A spokesperson from the Mall of America stated that the man was issued a "24-hour trespass for soliciting guests."
According to the Mall of America's website, soliciting is prohibited under its policies, which include "picketing, demonstrating, soliciting, protesting or petitioning."
Mall policy also specifies that "appropriate attire" must be worn inside the mall. The policy defines "apparel with obscene language, obscene gestures or racial/religious/ethnic slurs that are likely to create a disturbance" as inappropriate.
Despite the incident, a spokesman for the mall told the Daily Mail that the person was ultimately not required to comply with the security guard's request.
The story had Twitter users fired up.
I will ship a JESUS SAVES shirt to anyone in Minneapolis area that will where it to MOA…DM me your size and address
— Cullman (@cullmanhere) January 13, 2023
I am so getting this shirt. We need to march in this shirt. March on the malls.
— Mike Post (@postmikepost) January 13, 2023
This action caused inconvenience for shoppers and further fueled the anger of Second Amendment advocates who were already upset over the mall's 2015 ban on firearms.
“This is completely ridiculous. The complete opposite of what they should be doing,” Former Minnesota state Rep. Tony Cornish (R) said after a threat to the Mall of America in 2015. “If we’re threatened with an attack, the last thing you want to do is disarm citizens.”
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