IRVING, Texas -- Highs and lows can often become a part of every small business. The Khan's in Irving saw that to the extreme in their Indian-Pakistani restaurant all in one week.
"You read and read and read all the negative comments...it affects you," said Naima Khan, the restaurant owner.
It was last week that a picture and a tweet set off a firestorm. It was a year-old picture of people praying during Ramadan. It showed Muslims gathering for prayer outside the restaurant. That picture was taken and retweeted many times over.
"It just became this big nasty storm of hate against this restaurant," said Nikiya Natale, who is the civil rights director at CAIR, the Council on American Islamic Relations.
Natale tells News 8 the original post was not by the owners. One calling people to to take a "bulldozer flatten that devil store."
"On Saturday for another five or six hours we were just getting tweets," said Khan.
The owners say word had spread and that business was bad for days. The owners also say it was odd considering the majority of their customers are not Muslim. With their address now posted the owners were afraid of being targets.
Natale, who is an attorney, examined the legal aspects of the case. She says CAIR is not taking the legal route at this moment. She's fully aware that free speech is an absolute right, but within limits. Instead Natale and CAIR returned with a social media campaign to reverse it.
That campaign encouraged people to attend the restaurant.
"Theres more people out there who support them that are against them at this time," said Natale.
By Tuesday people were coming back. People had written them cards of encouragement. A handful of cards came from the nearby Northlake College.
"People coming out and showing you that we love you, we are with you. It just makes your day, it makes you strong," said Khan.
CAIR tells us the number of reported harassment incidents this year have already surpassed all of last year. The family filed a report with Irving Police.
Things are not back to normal but the Khans are optimistic the good will outweigh the bad.
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