Atlanta Exxon Owner Plans to Sell Gas Station After Months of Anti-Racism Protests. Black Protest Organizer Wants to Buy It

Illustration for article titled Atlanta Exxon Owner Plans to Sell Gas Station After Months of Anti-Racism Protests. Black Protest Organizer Wants to Buy It
Photo: Bruce Bennett (Getty Images)

It looks like the owner of an Exxon gas station in Atlanta is finding out the hard way that being racist while owning a store in a largely Black neighborhood is a recipe for all sorts of problems.

Advertisement

After suffering more than two months of accusations of racism and anti-racism demonstrations, the store owner has decided to sell his place of business, and if that isn’t enough to get the pro-Black activist in you gloating against anti-Black tears, the Black man who helped organize the protests is now on a mission to buy the gas station.

From CBS 46:

Following 66 days of non-stop demonstrations outside the Exxon gas station off Flat Shoals Rd, organizer Joe Jones is pleased that the owner is planning to sell.

“We sent a clear message that we will no longer tolerate disrespect,” Jones said.

Protests started in mid-October after a clerk at the store was caught on camera saying, “I don’t give a [expletive] about the Black neighborhood.”

The store’s owner, Rahim Sivji, apologized and parted ways with the clerk. However, Jones said they continued to protest due to claims of racism and abusive behavior customers reportedly experienced over the years.

“We have to understand our power, the power of dollar, the power of Black economics and we have to be intentional with our spending,” Jones said. “It is a privilege to get Black dollars.”

Sivji reportedly apologized for his clerk’s racism, but it’s Sivji himself who has been accused of referring to a Black patron as a “food stamp cockroach” and another as a “begging monkey,” according to an earlier CBS report.

Of course, Sivji characterized the constant protesting of Black people who don’t want racists making money off of them as “harassment” and complained to CBS 4 that protesters “tried to put me out of business.”

“It got to the point where I’m thinking if I have to save my life or my store, I say the hell with my store, I want to save my life,” he said—despite the fact that there are no reports of protests against his store turning violent. “That’s what’s important to me.” Sivji said the protests have cost him between 70 and 80 percent of his revenue.

Meanwhile, Jones is looking to turn anti-Black disrespect into Black ownership opportunity by starting a GoFundMe page in an effort to purchase the store once it is sold.

Advertisement

“This was an effective boycott that led to tangible results,” Jones said. “This is the perfect opportunity to take this situation and try to promote a situation of Black ownership.”

Zack Linly is a poet, performer, freelance writer, blogger and grown man lover of cartoons

DISCUSSION

feministonfire
FeministOnFire

Oooh how I love a sustained protest when foreign-borns think they can get in on anti-Black racism while making money off us!!! Detroiters have sprung up protests in several locations with Middle Eastern gas station and neighborhood store owners as well as Korean beauty supply stores and nail salons. All the groups love to talk about their own hard work and long hours in achieving a successful biz in a Black neighborhood but never mention the ethnic gangster uncles who lend them the startup cash, renovate the spaces and prohibit the merch distributors from working with competitors! 

They denigrate the Black neighborhood as if we don’t deserve or appreciate clean, pretty things but they construct prison-looking buildings, forgo installing pretty features or planting flowers, fail to install garbage cans or pay to clean the lots! Try waltzing into one and asking any of those businesses to donate to a neighborhood basketball team and duck as they pull Uzis on you! Ask why only their funky-attitude teens work there and no Black funkybutts! KNOW they’re raking in the moolah and taking it straight to white suburbs that accept them but would hound a Black family out of the sub! They’ve become millionaires vastly overcharging for every item, underpumping a gallon of gas and defrauding the gov’t with food stamps for decades before they’re caught! Lastly, watch em get indignant if you mistake their ethnicity: a Korean for a Chinese person, a Chaldean for a Middle Eastern Muslim or an Indian for a Pakistani!!! But they’ll pretend not to see and know the difference between a drunken crackhead getting ready to steal and an average woman perusing the merchandise!!! FOH!!!

But alas, those protests often fail for lack of enough protestors to walk the line and do it for an extended time til it really hurts their bottom line, like this dude.

Go on, my brother! Make em go to the white neighborhoods with non-captive markets and plenty of competition then they’ll say Uuuunnnhhh, na na na na!!!

Sorry for the long rant but I’m sick of muhfukkas from places where they shit in the street thinking of Blacks as less than!