Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy wants white people across the United States to feel more embarrassed about their racism, so much so that they act to rectify or physically express their “shame.”
Cathy appeared at Atlanta’s Passion City Church on Sunday alongside black Christian rapper Lecrae where the two discussed race relations. During the discussion, the CEO said he is actively working to help repair the damage racism has caused in this country and physically wiped Lecrae’s shoes to express his own shame.
BizPac Review reports:
His solution to help white people express their “shame” over racism was to suggest that they shine the shoes of black people.
Words that he put into action when he walked across the stage, knelt down and began shining the shoes of black Christian rapper Lecrae.
Cathy said: “We need to find somebody that needs to have their shoes shined. We need to just go right on over and shine their shoes, whether they got tennis shoes on or not, maybe they got sandals on, it really doesn’t matter.”
“But there’s a time in which we need to have some personal action here, maybe we need to give him a hug too,” he continued, hugging Lecrae.
The artist joked that the compensation should also include stock in Cathy’s company.
Cathy said he previously purchased “about 1,500” shoeshine brushes that he has given to people throughout his company.
“I gave them to all our Chick-Fil-A operators and staff a number of years ago,” Cathy said. “So any expressions of a contrite heart, of a sense of humility, a sense of shame, a sense of embarrassment begat with an apologetic heart — I think that’s what our world needs to hear today.”
This process started after Cathy attended a revival in Texas.
“At that revival in the front seat was an older African American man that was sitting there,” he explained. “And this young man got up, and he was so gripped with conviction about the racism that was in that local community that he took a shoe brush and he walked over to this elderly gentleman and he knelt on his knees and he began to shine his shoes.”
The CEO also addressed rioting and looting amid the protests. He said white people should not blame those looters for their actions but should examine the reasons behind them.
“[We had] about a dozen Chick-fil-A restaurants vandalized in the last week, but my plea would be for the white people, rather than point fingers at that kind of criminal effort, would be to see the level of frustration and exasperation and almost the sense of hopelessness that exists on some of those activists within the African-American community,” he said.
The comments did not resonate well with some people on social media:
Invest in training more minority management
Not shining shoes
This is extreme tokenism
— Gabe Hoffman (@GabeHoff) June 18, 2020
Am I off base in thinking that maybe the men who actually choose to do the job of shoe shining may feel a sense of pride in their work? That going out and earning a living is now being presented by a rich, white CEO as some weird way of being atoned for a sin?
— Charlotte (@KingCharlieCLT) June 19, 2020
He’s lost his mind
— Reno (@deboreno) June 18, 2020
Their stock be like… pic.twitter.com/up2s40Ht4C
— Grofe 🇺🇸 (@Grofe) June 18, 2020