Calls for boycotting Starbucks have been made after footage showcasing two black men being arrested while waiting inside the popular coffee chain went viral. The incident, which took place in Philadelphia, reaffirmed the implicit bias and racism that runs rampant throughout America.
On Saturday (April 15), Starbucks released a statement via Twitter apologizing to the two black men for the experience which led to their arrest. ‘”We take these matters seriously and clearly have more work to do when it comes to how we handle incidents in our stores,” the tweet read.
Philadelphia native Kevin Hart took to Twitter Sunday (April 16) to allege boycotting Starbucks isn’t the way to rectify the issue.
Message to the @Starbucks in Philadelphia….Our city is shining bright like a diamond right now. Please make this situation right. I repeat please make this situation right!!!!!!! Once again MAKE THIS RIGHT
Let’s make one thing very clear….This is not a boycott @Starbucks situation….This is horrible management. The manager on duty was wrong. It’s that simple…That’s who needs to take responsibility for this wrong doing.
— Kevin Hart (@KevinHart4real) April 15, 2018
Russell Simmons saw Hart’s tweet and took to social media to reinforce his years of activism in the community, and that boycotting Starbucks is the first steps in the company correcting their issue.
“We need to teach these companies to respect us and our buying power,” Simmons captioned. “Love you, no disrespect. I tried to call you…Please don’t tell your tens of millions of [fans] not to boycott. If I have to, I’ll come to your house and make you coffee.”
The two men arrested were later released as there was no evidence to support their original arrest.