Not a very good day for Papa John‘s Pizza, or the Louisville, Kentucky-based company’s founder, John Schnatter, after he admitted a few hours ago that he DID use the n-word in a recent business conference call.
Forbes first detailed the n-word incident earlier today; Schnatter was reportedly on a conference call with Laundry Service — a company that works in marketing and specializes in things like public relations campaigns — when he uttered the word.
Exactly why he uttered the word is unclear, though reports hold that it allegedly came out while Schnatter was complaining about the backlash he’s faced from the public after being particularly pro-conservative in matters like forcing NFL players to stand for the national anthem.
At one point, Schnatter reportedly said “Colonel Sanders called blacks n*****s,” and complained that even despite it, the KFC founder didn’t face any public backlash.
Even if it were true… why the FUCK would you say that, with the full word uncensored, especially, in a business environment??
And now, that n-word will cost him.
For one, Schnatter released a statement about the incident today saying (below):
“News reports attributing the use of inappropriate and hurtful language to me during a media training session regarding race are true. Regardless of the context, I apologize. Simply stated, racism has no place in our society.”
And current Papa John’s CEO Steve Ritchie — even though Schnatter founded the company, he was forced to leave it several months ago after a string of bad press then, too — relayed his own statement about the incident (below):
“The past six months we’ve had to take a hard look in the mirror and acknowledge that we’ve lost a bit of focus on the core values that this brand was built on and that delivered success for so many years. We’ve got to own up and take the hit for our missteps and refocus on the constant pursuit of better that is the DNA of our brand.”
Papa John himself has also been forced to resign from at least one board he’d currently been on, too; according to TMZ, Schnatter is stepping down from his post on the University of Louisville‘s Board of Trustees, effective immediately.
That may not seem like a huge deal to you or us, but to Schnatter, that’s everything — the pizza company is headquartered in Louisville, and Papa John is a MAJOR donor to their athletic programs. The school even named its on-campus football field Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium.
What do U think about all this, Perezcious readers??
[Image via WENN.]