Racists Vandalized Her Restaurant But She’s Still In Business

Photo by Blair Ballou

Vikki Layne Terrell locked up Vikki Layne’s Bar and Grill around 6:30 in the evening on Sunday, September 29th. Sometime after that racists vandalized her business, leaving behind racial slurs and other messages to let her know that she wasn’t welcome. Terrell has been in the restaurant business four years but since she moved to downtown Hattiesburg less than a year ago, there have been problems. This latest incident was undoubtedly the worst but even so, Terrell isn’t going anywhere and plans to be around for many years to come.

Photo: Lici Beveridge/Hattiesburg American

The N-word was written on a mirror and “Get out” was spray-painted in the bathroom. The vandals overturned dining room tables and damaged kitchen equipment. As a final touch, “You not welcome” was left as a clear message to Terrell. Before this incident there were other hostilities, all since the restaurant relocated to downtown. Terrell told the Mississippi Clarion Ledger that people have made racist comments. A white customer actually requested to not be seated next to Blacks. Another white customer asked to be served by a white waitress. Those smaller hostilities gradually led to this latest act of terror — a familiar theme for Black owned businesses.

Photo: Lici Beveridge/Hattiesburg American)

We should recall the 1921 massacre of Tulsa’s Black Wall Street, when hundreds of Black owned businesses were burned to the ground. In 1947 Elmore Bolling was lynched in Alabama, simply because he was becoming more successful than other whites in the area. There is no way to know how many Black business owners through the years have been murdered or terrorized, as a result of their success. What should be clear today is the potential for terror still exists, for Black entrepreneurs. Still, just as Terrell is determined to fight on, we should also persist. Ultimate liberation for Black people cannot be separated from economic power, after all.

Vikki Layne Terrell shows her jambalaya stuffed fried catfish at her Hattiesburg restaurant, Vikki Layne’s Bar and Grill. Susan Broadbridge/Hattiesburg American

Black progress has never been convenient, easy or void of opposition. Opposition is to be expected in life, business and especially in the quest for Black self determination — never forget that. Terrell has decided to persist and continue to build, even in the face of opposition. We should all do the same.

  1. Brenda Weiss
    Brenda Weiss
    October 9, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    The black and white community needs to rally around this Sister and help repair her restaurant. This is no longer the 50’s. This will never be tolerated.

    • Ken
      October 11, 2019 at 5:26 pm

      Maintain resiliency ! Invest in a top notch security system and cameras.

    • Dawn
      October 11, 2019 at 5:52 pm

      Black & white people rally around her? Black People have rallied around her. You have two types of white people in most cases like this: 1. The perpetrators 2. The ones that stand pat and do nothing. You say we aren’t in the 50’s!? Yet! We still, across America, are being lynched and shot down. Please stop with acting new or obtuse. It’s obnoxious and insulting. Peace be with you.

    • MzMonica
      October 11, 2019 at 6:33 pm

      Racists are always cowards that have to creep around in the darkness. Never do they stand strong in their beliefs, not running & cowering and allowing you to see their faces in the daylight. Vikki Layne don’t let those punk a_ _ es intimidate you out of your dreams. You’re in my thoughts & prayers.

    • Khadijah
      October 11, 2019 at 11:51 pm

      Deacons for defense

  2. Vickie Taylor
    Vickie Taylor
    October 11, 2019 at 3:01 am

    What makes them think they can come into her resurant tell her they want to be seated by certain race of people or serve. We are not being separated anymore you don’t like it go some else.

  3. Teresa Goodner
    Teresa Goodner
    October 11, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    It’s sad that there are small minded people in this world! How miserable and pathetic a life they live!

  4. Iris
    October 11, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    What annoys me with white people is when they talk about segregation and us getting our own. Once they realize how successful we actually can be without them, they want to come destroy it because they are a pathetic sad group of folks!

    • Lorraine
      October 12, 2019 at 1:48 pm

      Yes I agree with you on that point 100%. Google 1919 the most violent year for the negro. this has been going on long before the Tulsa riot and Rosewood. Even before the year 1919.

  5. Nini
    October 11, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    The beasts need to stay out of it because they are part of the issue. They are enemies against us Afrikan people.

  6. Lou
    October 11, 2019 at 4:26 pm

    This is a terrorist attack and a hate crime…the proper authorities must be called in. Terrorism insurance coverage is a must.

    • Lorraine
      October 12, 2019 at 1:50 pm

      Yes . She must contact the proper authorities right away and get media coverage as well.

  7. Suntiger
    October 11, 2019 at 5:24 pm

    I found it ironic that we get such adverse options from , whites when we move up in the world and pull ourselves up by or bootstrap as they say we should and when we do that . We are faced with white-blacklash to kept us progressing. When they come me into the black neighborhoods via by up all the real estate and Open stores , homes move blacks out and don’t even give us opportunities to by our make business in our own areas we don’t burn crosses , vandalized there business, destroy there homes we just quite and politely say come on in and take over are neighbors what out black opposition. Who are the real thugs and criminals?

  8. Janice
    October 11, 2019 at 5:30 pm

    This is just straight low down. hate it probably someone in the area and your business is booming and their aren’t put up some security camera so the next time this or anything happen to your business you can take them to court and sue them for everything they own house car and anything else they might own ,hit them in their pocket

  9. Maxine Mayo
    Maxine Mayo
    October 11, 2019 at 5:51 pm

    I am so happy that Ms Terrell has been able to keep her faith and over come the constant barage of obsticles that’s being thrown in her path. And, with this being a well documented history that we as a people have always had to endure, I am hopeful that we can, through our knowledge of the who’s what’s and how’s of these attacts, we can and will, through our enduring and creative abilities, come up with ways and means to greatly limit -if not end this this problem entirely.

  10. Nini
    October 11, 2019 at 5:57 pm

    The beasts know the end is near for them and that’s why they are acting out. Afrika people should know their enemies by now and be who the Divine Holy Black Ones created Us to be and let go of the devils.

  11. KO
    October 11, 2019 at 5:59 pm

    What would be a good way to donate money?

  12. Kristine
    October 11, 2019 at 6:00 pm

    Yes, we will rally around her. Unfortunately, we as Black people need to continually realize that most, not all, white people are not for us, but God is for us!

    October 11, 2019 at 6:05 pm

    Keep your head up when people have no power over you they get angry continue on being strong in the lord and in the power of his might

  14. Donah Davison
    Donah Davison
    October 11, 2019 at 6:32 pm

    If you do not want to sit next to blacks or be served by a black server then don’t go. I don’t understand that. I hope the community rallies around her. This cannot be allowed and the community should be ashamed that this has happened.

  15. ebby
    October 11, 2019 at 11:14 pm

    so you don’t wanna sit by blacks or be served by a black waitress but you wanna eat “OUR BLACK FOOD” lol sounds bought ignorant 🤦🏾‍♀️ Keep it cooking my sista!!!! 😘

  16. Ari Jenson
    Ari Jenson
    October 11, 2019 at 11:24 pm

    “Americans” need to rally and help repair her restaurant. Dumb nazi bastards don’t want to sit next to black people in a damn Black-owned restaurant. Then when they “finally” get that someone Black actually OWNS the place, it “surprisingly?” gets vandalized. By ignorant Nazis that can’t even spell good enough to get a business loan. MAGA you beautiful black woman!

  17. Albert Ervin
    Albert Ervin
    October 11, 2019 at 11:27 pm

    She need some serious Security to protect her business from those Racist Wolves”

  18. Michelle
    October 12, 2019 at 1:48 am

    What happened to her security alarm connected to the police? If she was saving money by not having, she needs to install ASAP.

  19. Valerie Mack
    Valerie Mack
    October 12, 2019 at 1:53 am

    The thing is, raciest are bullies.! They do not understand that they are simply stepping stones.
    Also Djuan, I am excited that you are in the process of creating jobs, if you are in need of temporary or permanent staffing. Leap Staffing Agency is here for you.
    We too are a Melanated Owners.

  20. Rochelle Williams
    Rochelle Williams
    October 12, 2019 at 6:23 am

    This is one of the signs of the end of the world…the bible says sin will wax worse and worse so we have pray and watch and be vigilant.
    GOD bless her and her business.

  21. Keenya Harris
    Keenya Harris
    October 12, 2019 at 10:51 am

    Please put some spiritual protection around your business. Get a security system so these incidents can be recorded… But there are scripture, candles and oils that can be used to keep out those who would do you harm.

  22. Angel
    October 12, 2019 at 11:54 am

    This is so sad and I commend her for not allowing them to win by pushing her out. I pray that her community is backing her 100% and show them that we stand behind our own and will not be pushed out.

  23. IvoryPeark
    October 12, 2019 at 4:16 pm

    Install security cameras. Two weeks ago, the Nazi punkends slashed my elderly sister’s tires in her driveway. We must protect ourselves.

  24. Joy
    October 12, 2019 at 9:25 pm

    Thank You for telling the truth about racist and anybody who hates on someone else in order to make their ownselves feel better.

  25. Sonja Stewart
    Sonja Stewart
    October 12, 2019 at 11:09 pm

    Cameras. Cameras. Cameras. And more hidden cameras. Press charges. Follow-up. Keep activity on social media. Cowards want to operate in darkness. Godspeed.

  26. Lorraine
    October 13, 2019 at 3:53 am

    Sad what’s going on. Why has no one noticed the obvious? The only way they knew that this is a black owned business, is because maybe the white people that worked there told some of the disgruntled customers that this business is black owned. Nevertheless, hiring black Americans to operate a black business should be a must. Anyone asking not to sit next to black people or not being served by black people, should be escorted out of your business. What you do in your home is your business, but you don’t have the right to impose your FEEBLE MINDED idea’s on everyone else.

  27. Valdre Hall
    Valdre Hall
    October 13, 2019 at 3:02 pm

    It’s a shame that we are the only group that is still harassed, terrorized for wanting to have our own business and be successful. I wonder what it is about us that scares them to see us thriving?! And to the white customers coming into a black business and wanting to be seated next to other whites, and be served by whites, you are in a black owned restaurant, you do not have to eat there. You want to eat our food, but don’t want to be near us…….?!

  28. Danielle
    October 14, 2019 at 1:21 am

    The next time they come to vandalize her business, it will be with fire. This incident is the threat; “You’re not welcome.” The next will be fire.

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