© Passion City ChurchChick-Fil-A CEO Dan Cathy is seen here shining Christian rapper Lecrae's shoes on Sunday.
The CEO of Chick-Fil-A shined a black rapper's shoes on Sunday and said white people should feel ashamed for "our silence."
Speaking on a panel discussion at the Passion City Church
in Atlanta, Georgia, with Christian rapper Lecrae and Louie Giglio, the church's founder, Dan Cathy
said of racial injustice: "Most of us, white people, we're out-of-sight, out-of-mind oblivious to it."
Cathy, the son of Chick-Fil-A founder S Truett Cathy, added: "We cannot let this moment pass."
"Our silence is so huge at this time. We cannot be silent. Somebody has to fight and God has so blessed our city, but it's shameful how we let things get so out of whack."The CEO said roughly a dozen Chick-Fil-A restaurants had been vandalized in the last week as protests broke out across the US in the wake of the police killings of George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks.
Floyd, a 46-year-old unarmed black man, died after former cop Derek Chauvin
kneeled on the back of his neck for close to nine minutes in Minneapolis, Minnesota
, on May 25.
Brooks, also an unarmed black man, was fatally shot
at a Wendy's in Atlanta last Friday after police were called to the restaurant about a car blocking the drive-thru lane
Cathy said of the subsequent vandalism that his "plea would be for the white people, rather than point fingers at that kind of criminal effort, would be to see the level of frustration and exasperation and almost the sense of hopelessness that exists on some of those activists within the African American community."The CEO said that after starting relevant conversations with Chick-Fil-A employees, including at the corporate office, there were "conscious and unconscious biases" — which he said made black employees feel like they weren't "treated with honor, dignity, and respect.""We as Caucasians, until we're willing to just pick up the baton and fight for our black, African American brothers and sisters, which they are as one human race, we're shameful."
He continued: "We're just adding to it."As he spoke about taking action for the black community, he shined Lecrae's shoes during the panel discussion."Any expressions of a contrite heart, of a sense of humility, a sense of shame, a sense of embarrassment ... an apologetic heart, I think that's what our world needs to hear today."
Chick-Fil-A has come under fire for its owners' record on LGBT issues.
The fast-food chain has faced opposition over donating millions over the years to groups that oppose same-sex marriage.
In 2012, Catchy criticized same-sex marriage — prompting some politicians to block the chain from expanding in certain areas.