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2 black men were unjustly handcuffed at Starbucks. Now, they're meeting with the CEO.

They were just waiting to start a business meeting. Now their story is fueling a movement that could permanently change corporate culture.

Two unnamed black men were filmed being led out of a Starbucks location by six Philadelphia police officers on April 12. At the time of this post, the video had already been viewed more than 10 million times.

The city's police commissioner initially defended the arrest, which reportedly came after a local Starbucks manager called in a complaint. Meanwhile, outrage over the incident grew — and so did pressure on Starbucks to address what increasingly is being labeled a case of racial bias.


Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney chimed in, saying, "I am heartbroken to see Philadelphia in the headlines for an incident that — at least based on what we know at this point — appears to exemplify what racial discrimination looks like in 2018."

After issuing three poorly received press releases, Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson gave his first public interview about the incident to "Good Morning America" on Monday, April 16.

He apologized and offered to meet with the men directly to find a solution.

It turns out, Johnson's most recent apology was every bit as direct and specific as it should have been — and other public figures should take note.

"The circumstances surrounding the incident and the outcome in our store on Thursday were reprehensible. They were wrong," Johnson said. "And for that I personally apologize to the two gentlemen that were visiting our store."

"It's my responsibility to understand what happened and what led to that and to ensure that we fix it," he said.

Johnson added that Starbucks would update its training practices at its more than 28,000 locations, including what he described as "unconscious bias" in terms of how employees and managers treat people of different races and backgrounds. He reiterated that the company has an explicit policy against racial profiling.

"What happened to those two gentlemen was wrong," Johnson said. "We will hold ourselves accountable."

A "good apology" alone doesn't fix the problem, but it helps. Even news anchors who interviewed Johnson agreed, with George Stephanopoulos commenting, "This guy did not hedge. He took full responsibility."

"We rarely see that from a CEO," co-anchor Robin Roberts added. "He wasn't mincing words at all."

An injustice was committed, and that can't be forgotten. But Johnson's offer to meet with the two men is a step forward.

He said he'd like to meet face-to-face with the two men so that he can apologize directly.

"I'd like to invite them to join me in finding a constructive way to resolve this issue," he said.

It still remains to be seen exactly how this situation resolves (and a subsequent incident in Los Angeles that apparently took place on the same day as Johnson's interview doesn't bode well). After all, the two men in question still haven't used their opportunity to have their voices heard.

Still, it's clear that there is power in people speaking out and applying pressure on business and political leaders to provide accountability and solutions when an injustice needs to be corrected.

Pedro Pascal and Bowen Yang can't keep a straight face as Ego Nwodim tries to cut her steak.

Most episodes of “Saturday Night Live” are scheduled so the funnier bits go first and the riskier, oddball sketches appear towards the end, in case they have to be cut for time. But on the February 4 episode featuring host Pedro Pascal (“The Mandalorian,” “The Last of Us”), the final sketch, “Lisa from Temecula,” was probably the most memorable of the night.

That’s high praise because it was a strong episode, with a funny “Last of Us” parody featuring the Super Mario Brothers and a sketch where Pascal played a protective mother.

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Pop Culture

Keanu Reeves shocks a small-town pub by stopping in for a pint and taking photos with the staff

“So today we had a surprise visitor for lunch. What a lovely man he was, too."

Keanu Reeves in São Paulo, Brazil, 2019.

Keanu Reeves has a reputation as one of Hollywood’s nicest celebrities. Recently, he cheered up an 80-year-old fan who had a crush on him by calling her on the phone. He’s also bought an ice cream cone for a fan to give an autograph on the receipt and crashed a wedding to take photos with the bride and groom.

He’s also an incredible humanitarian who gave up a big chunk of his money from "The Matrix" to a cancer charity.

The “John Wick” star was his usual gracious self over the weekend when on Saturday, February 4, he and a friend walked into The Robin Hood pub in Tring, Hertfordshire, about 30 miles outside of London.

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Pop Culture

The far-right is calling this viral Grammy performance 'Satanic.' Don't fall for it.

Sam Smith and Kim Petras' performance of "Unholy" left some calling it a satanic ritual.

K.G/Youtube

Sam Smith and Kim Petras performing "Unholy" at the Grammy Awards.

Depending on which corners of social media you call home, few happenings from the 2023 Grammy awards were as divisive as Sam Smith and Kim Petras’ performance of the song “Unholy.” Was it a historic moment of inclusion or a historic display of a Satanic ritual broadcast to the world?

On the one hand, the pair made music history. After winning the Grammy Award for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, Smith became the first non-binary artist to win the category, along with Petra who became the first trans woman to win the category.

However, not everyone was a fan of their live hell-themed performance, featuring Smith clad in red leather and sporting a top hat with devil horns and Petras dancing in a cage surrounded by dominatrixes.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz took to Twitter to call the act “evil,” and his fury was quickly echoed by other conservative influencers who declared it an example of mainstream devil worship.

“Don’t fight the culture wars, they say. Meanwhile demons are teaching your kids to worship Satan. I could throw up.” wrote conservative political commentator Liz Wheeler.

However, it doesn’t take a lot of research to find out what the artist’s original intentions were behind the song.

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Saturday Night Live/Youtube

"It's a me."

Pedro Pascal and HBO seem to be a match made in pop culture heaven. His role in the fourth season of “Game of Thrones” shot him to notoriety. He’s currently starring in “Last of Us,” which also boasts a massive viewership.

And now, thanks to one epic “Saturday Night Live” skit, fans are clamoring to see Pascal take on a new role—a brooding, hardened, princess smuggling Mario.

The faux trailer imagines the video game Mario Kart as a quintessential HBO drama. Mario (Pascal) has to use his driving skills to get Princess Peach (played by Chloe Fineman) through an apocalyptic Mushroom Kingdom.
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Celebrity

Philadelphia Eagles player is bringing his pregnant wife’s OBGYN to the Super Bowl, just in case

Kylie McDevitt's OBGYN is packing a bag to join the NFL star's wife, just in case baby Kelce decides to see the game too.

Philadelphia Eagles player is bringing his pregnant wife's OBGYN to the Super Bowl

Having a baby is an intimate, vulnerable experience, so people get pretty attached to their healthcare providers. I've met women who have planned an induction to have their baby with their preferred doctor and not whoever would be on call if they went into labor naturally. So it may not be a surprise to birthing people that Kylie McDevitt, Philadelphia Eagles player, Jason Kelce's wife, isn't taking any chances when she travels to Arizona for the Super Bowl.

Kelce made headlines with his brother Travis recently when it was revealed that the Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs would be facing off for the Super Bowl, making the pair the first brothers to compete against each other for a ring. It seems that McDevitt didn't want to miss the history-making moment, even though she'll be two weeks shy of the standard 40 weeks of pregnancy.

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Photo by alevision.co on Unsplash/ @camerconstewart_uk/Instagram

"Sometimes it pays to learn a language!"

It feels safe to assume that if money were no object, people would always choose to travel business class over economy. After all, who doesn’t want a fast check-in, fancy food and drink choices and more of that sweet, spacious legroom?

However, at anywhere between four to ten times the price of a regular economy ticket, this style of traveling remains a fantasy for many who simply can’t afford it.

Luckily, thanks to one man’s clever travel hack, that fantasy might be more achievable than we realize.

Cameron Stewart, a British photojournalist and camera operator, recently shared how he was able to score business class tickets at a fraction of the price, simply by switching the website language from English to Spanish.
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