UPDATE: The person who goes by the name of “Hotep Jesus” (Brian Sharpe in real life) in the video below is actually a conservative and a Trump supporter. He is also anti-Black Lives Matter. He was trolling the group when he made the video you will see. You can read an article where he describes why he likes President Trump, here.
Starbucks has found itself with a significant amount of mud on their faces in recent days. The overtly liberal corporation was brought under fire after an incident at one of their stores where an employee called law enforcement over two men who seemed to be loitering.
While that might not seem out of the ordinary, the plot twist is that both of those men happened to be African American. The media and many who value political correctness in this culture have been up in arms about the incident. Not only has it been all over the news, but protests have even been arranged.
According to News Blitz Online, the company is making a move to educate their employees, even closing stores to do so:
“Starbucks will close all stores on May 29th to have what the brand is calling “Racial Bias Education Training” for all employees. According to a press release issued by Starbucks, the classes will be taught by former U.S. Attorney General under the Obama Administration Eric Holder, Anti -Defamation League CEO Johnathan Greenblatt and other leaders.
Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson released the following statement below:
‘I’ve spent the last few days in Philadelphia with my leadership team listening to the community, learning what we did wrong and the steps we need to take to fix it,” While this is not limited to Starbucks, we’re committed to being a part of the solution. Closing our stores for racial bias training is just one step in a journey that requires dedication from every level of our company and partnerships in our local communities.’
Starbucks is under heavy public fire since the arrest of two black men inside one of their Philadelphia stores after the two men refuse to the leave the establishment. The two men have said they were waiting on a friend to arrive.
Johnson said today he would like to meet with both gentleman soon and talk about the incident.”
However, that still isn’t enough for those who feel that they were far too insulted by the incident. It has sparked some to go to Starbucks in an effort to make the corporation themselves give some payback. This is done under the heading of the “reparations movement.” That movement asks that Caucasians today, pay for the sins of their ancestors, giving money to African Americans today.
One proponent of that ideology filmed himself going into a Starbucks and asking for (and receiving) a cup of coffee for free:
Starbucks is racist https://t.co/fPf3ERMlXX
— Hotep Jesus 🧠 (@VibeHi) April 15, 2018
While what this barista did for the video poster might seem like a reasonable price to pay, for the discrimination that many face today, hopefully, we can ask ourselves if our actions are working for change. If we truly want to make a difference, our actions should back that up.
Sadly, the followup tweet posted by the same user insinuates that he doesn’t want change, only to gain something from the racism of others:
Black privilege gets me free coffee.
I love racism.
Only in America. 🇺🇸
— Hotep Jesus 🧠 (@VibeHi) April 15, 2018
Starbucks Chairman and outspoken proponent of social change, Howard Schultz, said in an interview with CBS, “I’m embarrassed, ashamed. I think what occurred was reprehensible at every single level. I think I take it very personally as everyone in our company does and we’re committed to making it right. The announcement we made yesterday about closing our stores, 8,000 stores closed, to do significant training with our people is just the beginning of what we will do to transform the way we do business and educate our people on unconscious bias,” Schultz said.
“It will cost millions of dollars, but I’ve always viewed this and things like this as not an expense, but an investment in our people and our company. And we’re better than this,” he said of the company’s plan to close on May 29.
Schultz also reports that the store manager who called authorities has left the company. He reiterated his desire to sit down with the two men and communicate with them personally.
“Perhaps something good can come out of this and by that I mean, this has highlighted for us that we have more work to do as a company and I think, you know, race is a very difficult subject to discuss,” he said.
The former CEO freely admits that this could have happened before, however, they plan to review their policies to make sure it never happens again.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that the reason that they (police) were called was because they were African American,” he said. “That’s not who Starbucks is.”
“What can Starbucks, given our resources, and the capabilities we have – they have an interest in real estate – what can we do to help advise them and support their own business endeavors,” he said. “We will provide them with a foundation of learning and provide them with an opportunity to be part of our company either directly or indirectly as a result of this situation.”