Don Thompson CEO McDonald's

When will people accept that McDonald’s just doesn’t give a shit? … and you shouldn’t either.

Case in point: A bright-eyed activist Michelle Dyre, who just completed her internship at Corporate Accountability International, a consumer advocacy group that routinely criticizes McDonald’s for marketing to kids, accused the fast-food giant of predatory marketing in minority markets, contributing to the obesity epidemic amongst African-Americans.

“Especially outrageous is McDonald’s targeting children of color,” she said during the Q&A session. “Children of color are already more likely to live in environments where healthy food is less available. That they are more likely to develop diet-related diseases than their white counterparts should be no surprise considering how McDonald’s overwhelmingly targets them with predatory marketing.”

Sounds plausible, right? What BET viewer can forget those repugnant “McNugget Love” commercials …

In response, McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson delivered a pointed retort to her and other critics Thursday morning: “The way you describe us is not who we are.”

Ad Age reported this story from McDonald’s annual stockholder’s meeting, you know, the setting where people are counting on McDonald’s execs to “penetrate” “untapped” and “emerging” markets with cunning ads, product placement, and strategic endorsements. Raise your hand if you can’t wait until the next McDonald’s 365 Awards!

It was reported that Thompson said that the race-based criticism “hits close to home.” Growing up in what is now an urban war zone, Chicago’s North Side, Thompson evoked his rags to riches story in front of a standing room-only audience, showing his benevolence towards the unfortunate masses still trapped in the ghetto … I get it, the whole “I grew up in the neighborhood” story.

Criticism of McDonald’s coarsened at point when a 9-year-old named Hannah — the daughter of health-food blogger Kia Robertson — bluntly stated, “It would be nice if you stopped trying to trick kids into wanting to eat your food all the time.” Boom!

“We are not the cause of obesity,” Thompson retorted back to Hannah, who he called “brave” for articulating her point. “We are not marketing unjustly to kids. Ronald is not a bad guy. … He’s about fun.”

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  • here is the benefit of olde age and a long view : back in the olde days black people were not fat. look at some old photos. you do not see a bunch of fat black people. we ate fresh food, there was no mac donanlds. we were healthy.

    fast food business came in and pushed out all other sources of food for poor black people. now most ghetto folk eat a diet of fast food and processed food. illness has skyrocked! everyone is fat. diabetes is rampant. heart problems, the list goes on.

    people say it’s our own fault. one of the first lines of denial is to blame the victim.

    james says if you take the crack dealers out the community it would sure cut down on addiction. if you took the gun dealers out the community it would sure cut down on gun shots wouldn’t it?

    of course they want you to blame yourself! that takes them of the hook.

    fast food and processed food is addictive and like many addictive substances, it will kill you. the food industry spends billions of advertising to children. they brainwash black people. they deny healthy options. they will kill you if you let them.

    they are the devil.

  • would you buy a used car from that brother?

    • BlackBeauty

      What a crock of crap!

      Black folks did not eat all that healthy, and poor whites and others did not eat that healthy either!

      In fact since most of you say blacks did not have much we indeed ate a poor diet of fried foods, pork, potatoes, rice, bread, and so forth. If some black people were not fat then where did the fat mammy come from? Some of us, just as today, were fat!

      It is about your taking responsibility for yourself. Can I make you jump off a bridge by simply marketing that idea to you?

      You know what you should eat, and you know what you should not eat, at least as a steady diet. Please stop making black people look like they are stupid. We can think! Also, stop with the devil crap whenever it involves black people.

      Bottom line is to take responsibility for yourself and your family. Eat a reasonable, balanced diet. Have McDonald’s or other fast food sometimes, but don’t stuff your face with it every day, all day long!

      No matter who promotes/markets to us, if we are that stupid then we sure do have some problems!

    • you do know that the person who swears they are not brainwashed is usually the most brainwashed one in the bunch?

    • BlackBeauty

      “you do know that the person who swears they are not brainwashed is usually the most brainwashed one in the bunch?”

      Yes, sometimes that is true!

  • talaktochoba

    where do they find them? first Alan Keyes, now this Don Thompson, who even in the picture one can see the lamp on his desk to light up his masters’ lawns…

    just gotta love this “we” business, like he has the slightest sway in what the company will do;

    this is the living embodiment of what Brother Malcolm was talking about when he spoke on house negroes…

    • BlackBeauty

      Excuse me, but why does Mr. Thompson have to be a “house negro” because he has been successful in moving in the top spot for a corporation?

      Why try to degrade the man?

      This is one problem we have (some of us), whenever one of us get’s to the top, some want to pull them right back down. Why do we do this? Why are we that kind of people?

      Again, take responsibility for yourself and your family, and stop placing blame on everyone else.

    • “why does Mr. Thompson have to be a “house negro” because he has been successful in moving in the top spot for a corporation?”

      because he is selling poison to his own people just like any crack dealer…

    • BlackBeauty

      Your comment reeks with ignorance.

      And, if the crack dealer is selling crack do you buy/use it?

      Have you no self control, respect for self, able to reason and think for yourself?

      Are we really that stupid?

    • talaktochoba

      are we really that stupid? let’s see, reelecting Marion Berry, worshipping the modern Sally Hemmings on “Scandal”, scarfing up crap from mysogynistic rappers, shooting babies over PlayStations, paying thousands of dollars for conks and foreign hair stapled to our scalps, letting babies continue to make more babies we sell and/or abandon, selling ourselves out to be figureheads in corporations that pimp fast food filth to our children these corporations call “healthy”–you tell me?

    • Treece

      @ Black Beauty
      Being poor and having no money to buy anything else but fast food or heavily processed food has nothing to do with self control. Most times obesity has nothing to do with self control. It’s an emotional, poor relationship with food (closely correlated with depression) that makes a person over-eat and lack motivation and drive to exercise. The reason why poor people are obese has been found in some studies to be related to the stress of being poor and living in communities where crime is high and finances are low. Also, a poor parent (or parents) on public assistance can feed his or her family more food when they purchase processed food (high in fat, high in sodium, and high in sugar) rather than fresh fruits and veggies. Not to mention the proven addictive qualities these foods have b/c of the fat/sugar/salt combos they deliver. And, given the lack of actual grocerystores in poor Black communities, it’s assumed that McD’s (or any other fast food option) will be the next step when all you have is 5 bucks and little mouth to feed on a typical weeknight. That 5 dollars feeds you and the kids from something on the xtra value menu. And like I said, this food is addictive. The more of the deadly combo you eat, more of the same you crave. It makes more sense to someone who is on PA or works for barely minimum wage if at all to spend 3-5 dollars here and there on a junk food meal than go all the way across town to a grocery store where that money gets you 2 apples.

      I really hate how ppl try to simplify the issue of obesity and boil it down to a mere “lack of self-control” when that only is a teeny tiny part of the problem for most folks. I don’t even think that’s the point. Obesity is so much more multi faceted than just blaming McD’s or the hormones in the meat, or depression, or video games, or tv, or lack of self control. There is no single reason for it, so there is no one single solution. It is so ignorant to deliver the “just stop eating McDonalds and get off you ass and exercise” message to people. Mainly because if it were that simple, it would be done already. Do you think most people who are fat, want to be fat? No. It’s a difficult struggle to end bad eating habits and get motivated to do something about your weight. Especially when money is tight.

    • BlackBeauty

      Sorry, while I thoroughly understand your main point I also know that poor people can make better choices with that same $5.00 at fast food places, and in fact poor folks can eat much better off of $5.00 if they get a pound of beans, and have red beans & rice!
      Not being funny, but I don’t see how poor folks can eat at McDonalds today because it is not cheap, especially if you have several kids to feed.

      My point is not to place blame on all over-weight people, however many make the wrong choices, which in my opinion is the key! Make better choices! and, yes, many do over eat because they like to eat!

      Bottom line is that no one can make you eat something you know is not good for you no matter how aggresive the marketing/promotion.

      Take control of yourself!

      Appreciate your POV.

  • It’s not just the website. It’s the 365Black Awards ceremony. You ask is it racist or preferential treatment of Blacks? It is neither. Why spend so much money on celebrities while your employees are paid SLAVE WAGES AND DEPENDENT ON GOVERNMENT HANDOUTS?

    It’s a corporate propaganda tool, and that should be obvious to anyone with ears. I don’t understand how any celebrity can knowingly accept any achievement award from this corporation while it directs its employees to apply for food stamps due to the low wages paid them by McDonald’s. Add to that the fact that McDonald’s foods are of questionable nutritional value AND some ingredients in their foods may even be detrimental to health because of the chemical content therein.

    Why don’t these Black celebrities kindly thank McDonald’s and decline to participate until McDonald’s demonstrate social and corporate responsibility by increasing their employees’ wages to equal or above what’s considered the national poverty level?