DAN Cathy is the CEO of American fast-food franchise Chick-fil-A.
The businessman urged white people to repent during widespread civil unrest and anti-racism protests in the United States.
His emotional plea came after a dozen Chick-Fil-A restaurants were vandalized by protesters decrying the recent police custody killings of two black men, George Floyd and Rayshard Brooks.
But who is Cathy and what exactly did he say about racism and the Black Lives Matter movement?
Who is Dan Cathy?
Cathy is the billionaire son of Chick-Fil-A founder S Truett Cathy.
He is reportedly worth $7.1 billion as of June 2020, according to Forbes.
Cathy is the chairman and CEO of Chick-fil-A, the fried chicken juggernaut his dad founded in the sixties.
He became CEO in 2012 but his comments about the LGBT community caused uproar that year.
The Chick-fil-A boss criticized same-sex marriage, prompting some politicians to block the chain from expanding in certain areas.
“We’re inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at him and say we know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage," he said during the controversial radio interview.
Cathy supports the anti-racism demonstrations stemming from Floyd's brutal arrest and death in Minneapolis.
What has Cathy said about black lives?
Cathy said he is against racism during a roundtable panel discussion at the Passion City Church in Georgia, with Christian rapper Lecrae and the church's founder, Louie Giglio.
Cathy began polishing Lecrae's sneakers during the recorded talk.
This happened two days after Brooks was shot in a Wendy's parking lot by Atlanta cops after falling asleep in his car and failing a sobriety test.
Cathy said most white people were "out-of-sight" and "out-of-mind oblivious" to racial injustice.
His comments came after the Chick-fil-A boss shared an emotive LinkedIn post on June 2, entitled "Use Your Power And Influence."
"Our silence is so huge at this time," he told Lecrae and Giglio. "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.”
Cathy said conversations with his employees – including at the corporate office – unearthed conscious and unconscious biases.
This made black staffers feel like they weren't "treated with honor, dignity, and respect," he said.
“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," Cathy continued. "We cannot let this moment pass."
"Any expressions of a contrite heart, of a sense of humility, a sense of shame, a sense of embarrassment," he added.
"An apologetic heart, I think that's what our world needs to hear today."
What is Chick-fil-A?
Chick-fil-A was founded by S Truett Cathy in 1967 at an Atlanta mall.
It's touted as the home of the original Chicken Sandwich and famed for its Waffle Fries and Chick-fil-A Sauce.
Cathy died in 2014, leaving a fried chicken empire for his sons, which spans 47 states and Washington DC.
Dan Cathy is now the CEO and his brother, Bubba Cathy, serves as Executive Vice President.
The Atlanta-based company's ethos was deeply rooted in their father's Southern Baptist beliefs.
Initially, Chick-fil-A closed its 2,300 restaurants on Sundays as a “testament to [Cathy’s] faith in God," reports said.
Now, a video on its website, said they hold on to the practice so people can spend more time with family and friends.
Chick-fil-A has faced opposition for donating millions over the years to groups that oppose marriage equality.
The company vowed to take “a more focused giving approach" in 2020 when it comes to donations.
Cathy's fast food chain recently apologized for a viral photo of an employee wearing an "Back the blue" shirt.
This slogan tee was actually in support a local football team and the image itself was several years old.
The company has issued their support for the anti-racism movement in the US.
Speaking about the vandalism of his restaurants after Brooks' death last week, CEO Cathy said his “plea would be for the white people."
"Rather than point fingers at that kind of criminal effort, [it] 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," he told
He described how Chick-fil-A has worked to improve “the most distressed zip code in Georgia."
The company also donated money and resources to local businesses and institutions, and is helping plan redevelopment of the area.
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