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Black leaders criticize Papa John’s, Coca-Cola for supporting Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter
A "Black Lives Matter" banner hangs on the fence erected around the White House to protest the death of George Floyd in Washington, D.C., on June 10, 2020. |

African American leaders with a conservative-leaning community activist organization are calling for American corporations to repent of their public support for Black Lives Matter and other organizations that are “intentionally hurting” communities by supporting movements to defund police departments.

Pastor Marc Little, executive director for the conservative lobbying organization CURE America Action and board member of Concerned Communities for America (CCA), helped deliver a pledge last week to the headquarters of Papa John’s and Coca-Cola in Atlanta urging executives to signal support of police officers.

CCA, which spearheaded the pledge initiative, aims to "equip and empower minority communities to pursue political liberation by shifting the narrative on political and social agendas via the promotion of economic empowerment, education, and social equity." Meanwhile, CURE America "advocates for conservative principles based on Christianity, Capitalism, and the Constitution," according to its website.

The pledge argues that Papa John's “vocal and financial support of the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation and its affiliates was short-sighted and did not fully contemplate the ramifications of their words and actions."

Little told The Christian Post the agenda being pushed by corporations such as Papa John’s, Coca-Cola, Peloton and others is false and misleading.

“The narrative that corporate media would have us believe is that the black community stands against law enforcement. That’s not true,” said Little. “The black community realizes the reason why law enforcement is more focused in the inner cities where black and brown people live is because that’s where more of the crime is concentrated. That’s just a fact."

“And to suggest that we want police taken out of our communities where most of the crime is committed just doesn’t make any sense,” he added.

Little, an ordained pastor and graduate of Fuller Seminary in Pasadena, California, pointed to a 2020 Gallup poll that found roughly 81% of blacks want police to spend the same amount or more time in their area. Additionally, 20% of African Americans surveyed said they want more police in their areas.

The pastor said that’s a narrative quite different from the one pushed by mainstream media networks, particularly during the George Floyd protests and riots in the summer of 2020.

“The real community, the community you don’t hear in Twitter, in Facebook, these platforms are controlling the narrative in our culture, they’re controlled by a whole bunch of bots … and it’s a narrative that drowns out truth,” he argues.

Little called BLM leadership “self-proclaimed Marxists” and added that Marx himself eventually became a Satanist. He said corporate-led support for a group that has publicly espoused anti-Christian views needs to stop.

“Corporate America first has to stop funding things that hurt our communities. ... That’s what the pledge says,” Little said. “That we now realize the error of our ways, and we’re going to stop funding organizations that are intentionally hurting our communities by increasing the lack of safety by defunding police departments.”

He suggested companies instead pivot to efforts such as funding public-private partnerships, for instance, that help communities that can’t afford police body cameras for officers and where funding either isn’t available or city leaders don't have the willpower to “stand against the forces of BLM.”

Little voiced empathy for employees of corporations like Papa John’s and others promoting what he described as “an agenda that in many respects [that] can be determined to be Satanic.” 

“It’s very real, people are dealing with it in real time, knowing the vaccine is not a vaccine, knowing the corporations they work for like Coke, Peloton, Papa John’s, who are behind an organization that’s hurting our communities.”

He advises Christians working in such environments to connect more deeply with their convictions.

“What is your assignment? Are you really sold out for your assignment?” he asked. “Why does the Church exist? To glorify God (Matt. 5:13-16), and to make disciples of nations.

“So, wherever you are in the marketplace, do you understand your assignment?”

Little acknowledged the realities often faced by those employed in the medical profession and other sectors that often require some pretty difficult decisions.

“If I were working at a hospital and I was required to assist in performing an abortion, that would be my red line. I wouldn’t do that,” he said. “But there are other sorts of environments by which, as believers, we are called to change the atmosphere, where we’re called to be salt and light. And how we do that … really becomes the question.

“And so in the workplace and the marketplace, that’s how we convert one coworker at a time. And then ultimately, the environment now is opposed to what leadership is doing and then what happens? Leadership doesn’t have any support.”

Ultimately, Little believes corporate America is pushing an agenda that has little to do with capitalism or the free market and everything to do with ideological narrative-setting.

“Whether we wanna recognize it or not, when we look at [Critical Race Theory], when we look at the ‘defund the police’ movement, these things are birthed out of radical leftist ideology that is being pushed by people who are no longer ashamed to say that they are Marxists," he argues.

"We just gloss over that. Once upon a time, when you would say that, you would get a McCarthy-style hearing, once upon a time. We were running these people out of government. Now they’re allowed and they’re not ashamed. And we don’t go after them anymore, why, I don't know. Probably because the people who believe as they do … these are the people who have taken hold of our government and they’re not ashamed of it.”

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