The actions by Lidl removing the crosses has gone viral and have provoked a backlash against the European supermarket giant for erasing the Christian symbol from packaging to “remain neutral” on religious matters.
The controversy erupted over packaging for a range of Greek food products, featuring images of an iconic blue-domed church from the island of Santorini, but its iconic white crosses were edited out of the picture.
In protest, a Czech citizen, Martin Zapletal, visited his home town’s three Lidl stores, dressed in a medieval cloak and carrying a 3-foot-tall wooden crucifix.
Zapletal blessed the products in question at a Lidl supermarket in Olomouc, Czechia on Tuesday.
“Yes, the crucifixes were real, and very old”, Zapletal told The Gateway Pundit, “but the costumes were improvised.”
At each supermarket, Zapletal “blessed goods without the cross”. Many customers filled their shopping carts with the offending goods only to leave them at the check-outs without paying.
The former Czech soldier and military police officer turned activist, said his actions speak to his fellow countrymen. “We in the Czech Republic like different kinds of humor. We’re known for that and we wanted to highlight what is a very serious issue – the censorship of Christian identity across Europe.”
European culture is retreating in the face of Islam, the 37-year-old explained. First the crosses go, followed by scenarios already seen in Kosovo. Historically it has always been about war and cultural conquest, he says.
“We’re at home here. Our rules apply. If anyone doesn’t like it, he can leave”, Zapletal continued. He lives Olomouc, a university town in Eastern Bohemia.
“This goes far beyond the decisions of this one supermarket chain”, he said, adding that large foreign populations are being invited into Europe, dividing the continent, a deliberate project so advanced that conflict is already inevitable, he believes.
Zapletal has received a “great positive response” in the wake of his protest against Lidl on Sunday and Tuesday. Crosses were being affixed to the doors of several Lidl stores in Prague on Sunday, as well as in Brno, the Czech Republic’s second largest city, on Monday.
The empty shopping carts staged in his support ended with police being called by store management. But Zapletal said it was simply Czech tradition: “I am a citizen. I am a patriot. We must all take a stand against evil.”
The chain’s Facebook pages were inundated with negative comments, with many irate users pointing out that there was no censorship of Islamic minarets and crescent emblems of Halal food products.
Lidl, which operates 10 000 outlets in Europe, has apologised, stating that the issue is being dealt with “the highest priority”.
In May 2016, the young war veteran Zapletal was arrested and received a suspended sentence for showing his bare backside – mooning – to a NATO military convoy passing through the Czech Republic en route to the Baltic Sea.
“I stopped an entire convoy with my bare backside,” he laughed.