As part of the company’s increasingly hysterical response to the PR crisis from the viral video of two black men being arrested in a store in Philly, Starbucks’ executive chairman Howard Schultz appeared on “CBS This Morning” on Wednesday and promptly threw the employee who made the call to police under the bus.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that the reason that they (police) were called was because they were African American,” Schultz told host Gayle King Wednesday. “That’s not who Starbucks is.”
The store manager who called the police, Holly — who one frequent patron of the Philly store told The Daily Wire is “an SJW feminist of the highest order” who has never shown any signs of being a “racist” — has since left the company.
Though he declared definitively that the former manager’s actions were motivated by racism, Schultz noted that Holly said she was “interested” in sitting down with the two men, which the executive said offered a chance for some much-needed “reconciliation” after the “reprehensible” series of actions.
“I’m embarrassed, ashamed,” he told King. “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 kinds of racial bias he suggested his employee acted upon, he fears, may not be “isolated” to her. For that reason, the company is making sure that the world knows they view racial bias very seriously, so they are closing 8,000 stores as well as their corporate offices on May 29 for some clearly much-needed “unconscious bias” training.
“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.
Schultz made sure to underscore that the decision would cost the company “millions of dollars” — but he does not view it as lost revenues, rather “an investment in our people and our company.” To help them “transform,” they’ve called in the NAACP and the Equal Justice Initiative to help train their employees.
So far we haven’t gotten a chance to hear from now-unemployed Holly. But one listener to Shapiro’s Daily Wire podcast sent Shapiro an email expressing her “shock” that Holly was being accused of racism. Shapiro reports:
The same day as Starbucks’ announcement, a listener to my show emailed me from Philadelphia to talk about Holly. According to the listener, who regularly frequents the now-infamous Philadelphia Starbucks in question, “I don’t know what happened last week with the two guys. I wasn’t there. But I highly doubt that she saw the two men and decided to call the police based solely on the fact that they are black.”
Why not? According to this patron, “From my observations and interactions with her, I was actually under the impression that Holly is an SJW feminist of the highest order. Once I even overheard her scorn a male barista for not using the proper neutral pronouns with somebody. That’s why this whole situation is so shocking to me! Even though I did not agree with her and all the SJW pins that adorn her beanie, I think calling her a racist all over the news and doxing her name, address, phone, family, etc. is disgusting.”
This patron explained that Holly “is not racist and doesn’t deserve what is happening to her here in Philly.” The patrons of the Starbucks are “both black and white, and I’ve personally seen Holly give the oh-so-coveted restroom code to both black and white people, patrons and non-patrons. I’ve seen her train both black and white staff members and she has been nothing but nice to everyone, and I’ve never witnessed any racist behavior.”
Partial transcript via CBS News.