Papa Johns (264812)

Recent words and actions by public figures exhibiting disrespect for Black folk have had its price. And for businesses, it’s a costly price. Starbucks was just one recent example, and now there is Papa John’s. Recently, it came to light that the pizza chain’s founder, John Schnatter, used the n-word during a business meeting. Papa John’s sponsorship deals have since been falling like rocks during an earthquake. The latest is Oregon State University’s athletic department, which announced its separation from Papa John’s earlier this week. Since the backlash, Schnatter has admitted he regrets his choice of words. But truth be told, it should come as no surprise that the former chairman of the chain would come across as a racist. Back in 2012, there were rumors that he was telling employees that if he found out that they voted for Barack Obama, they would be fired. “The derogatory and insensitive comments made by Papa John’s founder John Schnatter are not reflective of Oregon State University’s values and the inclusive environment we strive to foster throughout the university community and within OSU Athletics for all student-athletes and fans,” Scott Barnes, the athletic director, said in a statement. The decision follows similar moves in recent days by the University of Louisville ― which said it would rename a stadium bearing the company’s name ― and a variety of professional sports franchises, including teams in Major League Baseball. The National Football League (NFL) ended its sponsorship with Papa John’s earlier this year. The MLB teams include the Miami Marlins, New York Yankees, Seattle Mariners, Tampa Bay Rays, Atlanta Braves, Baltimore Orioles, Kansas City Royals, Minnesota Twins, Texas Rangers and Washington Nationals, reports Fortune magazine. The MLB said it is also suspending its Papa Slam pizza promotion during games. Schnatter apologized for his choice of word, but he claims that it was not used with malice. Schnatter, who founded the pizza company in 1984, uttered the slur after he reportedly complained that Colonel Sanders of KFC never received public backlash for his racist remarks.