Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: Starbucks’ Flawed But Wonderful Plan To Tackle Race

TIME

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz’s bold decision to encourage his baristas to discuss race relations with willing customers has filled me with shock and awe. I’m in awe of his courageous and good-hearted attempt to do something to bring about better awareness of racism. I’m in awe that he’s willing to put morality above profits. I’m in awe that he’s willing to endure the snarky ridicule and lame coffee jokes from pundits as well as the inevitable death threats from clueless trolls. All with nothing personally or corporately to gain — and a lot to lose.

But while in awe of his chutzpah, I’m also in shock that he thinks this will actually work.

It’s abundantly clear that there’s a race perception problem in America. Despite the killings of unarmed African-Americans, despite the evisceration of the Voting Rights Act, despite Oklahoma frat boys singing about lynching blacks, the majority of white…

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