Pastor Suing over Slur on Cake; Whole Foods Pursuing Legal Action against him [UPDATED; NEW VIDEO]
This is unbelievable. Let me see if I have the series of events correct.
So a guy walks into a Whole Foods and orders a cake. A custom cake, not very fancy that says "Love Wins" across the top. He specifically asked for those two words to be strewn across the top, with a lot of white space in the middle.
It just so happens this man is a Pastor named Jordan Brown who ministers to the Gay & Lesbian community. He himself is homosexual.
He picks up the cake, says he didn't take a look at it even though it had a plastic transparent window in the box. When he gets home, he finally takes a look at the cake and is appalled that the white space he requested has a word written in it, an anti-gay slur to be exact. It says "Love Wins F--."
In an online video post, the Pastor reveals the cake.
Whole Foods calls B-S on Pastor Brown in a statement:
“The team member wrote “Love Wins” at the top of the cake as requested by the guest and that’s exactly how the cake was packaged and sold at the store. Our team members do not accept or design bakery orders that include language or images that are offensive. Whole Foods Market has a zero tolerance policy for discrimination.”
He then files a lawsuit because of Whole Foods' remark.
Whole Foods then doubles down.
Now it appears the lawyers will get involved. In the meantime, I have a few questions.
Why didn't he look at the cake before he paid? It's hard to miss unless something was obscuring the window. Something that could possibly smush the cake.
Did the clerk show the cake to him before he paid? Normally when I have a cake made, the person behind the counter will show the inscription to me before I pay. (One time, I had "ya rotten bastard" written on a cake I bought at Albertsons. He was a dear friend.)
If the person who sold the cake was indeed a member of the LGBTQ community, why didn't they see the cake and react? Why wouldn't anyone of good conscience or who cared about customer service?
Most important of all, why would anyone do this in the first place? Especially in Austin and at Whole Foods no less? What is the motive?
Something smells fishy and it ain't in the seafood department.
UPDATE, 3:00 PM: Whole Foods has released the security camera footage from the chain's North Lamar Boulevard flagship store of what appears to be the purchase of the cake by Brown. It was released on the company's YouTube page.
In a news release, Whole Foots fired back in it's strongest language yet:
Updated from April 18th statement:
After a deeper investigation of Mr. Brown’s claim, we believe his accusations are fraudulent and we intend to take legal action against both Mr. Brown and his attorney. Here’s what we know:
- Our bakery team member wrote “Love Wins” at the top of the cake, which was visible to Mr. Brown through the clear portion of the packaging. That’s exactly how the cake was packaged and sold at the store. Whole Foods Market has a strict policy that prohibits team members from accepting or designing bakery orders that include language or images that are offensive.
- Mr. Brown admits that he was in sole possession and control of the cake until he posted his video, which showed the UPC label on the bottom and side of the box.
- After reviewing our security footage of Mr. Brown, it’s clear that the UPC label was in fact on top of the cake box, not on the side of the package. This is evident as the cashier scans the UPC code on top of the box, which you can view here.
- We stand behind our bakery team member, who is part of the LGBTQ community, and we appreciate the team members and shoppers who recognize that this claim is completely false and directly contradicts Whole Foods Market’s inclusive culture, which celebrates diversity.
Yours Truly, Whole Foods Market
See more at Whole Foods website.
BONUS: Local media reports