November 26, 2022

The founder of Papa John’s just used the n-word in a conference call

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The embattled founder of Papa John’s Pizza, John Schnatter, was once the face of a proud franchise whose logo dominated broadcasts of the National Football League’s games and endless football analysis programs – but ever since he made the mistake of wading into the debate over player protests, he continually insists on showing America his true racist colors.


When President Trump decided to seize on black NFL players kneeling during the pre-game national anthem ceremony as the next opportunity to rile up his base of hooting racists, Papa John should have just stayed out of sight – but instead decided to side with the president and with the forces of white supremacy in their efforts to bully the athletes into submission.

That decision led to a public outcry and his eventual ouster as the CEO of his own company – but a new report from Forbes makes it clear that Schnatter hasn’t learned from the experience one bit.

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During a call with marketing executives from the firm Laundry Service, which he hired to help dig himself out of the hole he dug with his comments about how it was NFL players’ faults that his company’s profits were down (obviously false), Schnatter used an awful racial slur as part of a roleplaying exercise.

“Colonel Sanders called blacks n******s!” complained Schnatter while responding to a question about how he would distance himself from the neo-Nazi groups and alt-right media figures who had suddenly become huge fans of Papa John’s pizza after he revealed himself to be a racist.

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He also went on to describe how when he was growing up in Indiana, African-Americans would be “drag African-Americans from trucks until they died.” While he supposedly meant to use this as a story of why racism was bad, the executives at Laundry Service were appalled and quickly moved to terminate their contract.

When taken into context with his remarks about how he hates Obamacare and his many donations to Donald Trump’s election campaign, it’s clear that he’s nothing but another rich racist who deserves a lot more than just having to step down from his company.

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Natalie Dickinson

Natalie is a staff writer for the Washington Press. She graduated from Oberlin College in 2010 and has been freelance blogging and writing for progressive outlets ever since.

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