Longtime readers of these pages might recall an odd piece I wrote five years ago. It was an out-of-the-blue rumination unlike any I think I'd written before or since, wondering why on earth Papa John's used its founder and CED John Schnatter was their spokesperson in TV ads, since he seemed to me one of the most unlikely people I've seen promoting a product. You can read the piece here. I end it by noting that what promoted me to write the commentary was that I'd felt that way for a very long time and just saw a TV ad that was too creepy that I couldn't take it any more. I closed by writing, "He had his arm around some kid, trying to look like just a regular guy, and all I could think of was yelling at the screen, 'Run, kid! Run!! Run for your life before he snaps and strangles you!!!'"
I bring this up because, after having been forced to resign as CEO for racial comments last year, he was just forced to resign as Chairman of the Board for additionally racially crass words.
I wish I could say I was prescient -- five years ahead isn't too shabby -- but I have a strong feeling that I wasn't alone in thinking how creepy he seemed. But I'm certainly glad I wrote it back then and that it's time-stamped...
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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