Papa John’s is singing a different tune after blaming its pizza-sales decline on the NFL anthem protests.
The pizza company’s CEO, John Schnatter, thought it appropriate earlier this month to tell shareholders that “the NFL has hurt us,” expressing disappointment that “the NFL and its leadership did not resolve this.”
By “resolve this,” Schnatter was, of course, talking about players kneeling during the anthem to express their First Amendment rights in silent protest of black oppression and police brutality, the controversy surrounding which, Schnatter claimed, was “polarizing the customer and polarizing the country.”
Now the pizza company has used its Twitter account to apologize and offer to work with players and the league to “find a positive way forward.”
“We believe in the right to protest inequality and support the players’ movement to create a new platform for change. We also believe together, as Americans, we should honor our anthem. There is a way to do both,” another tweet read.
Also, still sounding a bit shaken up that neo-Nazis claimed its pizza as their own because of the pizza chain’s apparent stance on the NFL protests, Papa John’s added that it was open to ideas from all, except the neo-Nazis, adding an emphatic middle finger emoji to its statement.
After Schnatter made his earlier statement, the company’s pies were dubbed “the official pizza of the ‘alt-right,’” which sounds like a delicious public relations nightmare to have to deal with.
But in the end, all that it looks like to me is that Schnatter and everyone else at the company decided that a little bit of lagging pizza sales had nothing on the fact that the company’s stock had fallen nearly 13 percent (as reported by the Associated Press) since Schnatter made his comments.
Read more at CBS News.