Media mogul Byron Allen is proceeding with his $10 billion racial discrimination lawsuit against McDonald’s after a US court gave the thumbs up last Friday, almost a year after the case was dismissed.
McDonald’s is being accused by Allen of not equally paying to place ads on black-owned networks which include his AMG Entertainment Studios and the Weather Group, according to the Daily Mail. He asserts that it has cost the networks millions in potential annual revenue.
His contention is that black people comprise 40 percent of the fast food market and that McDonald’s assigns black-owned networks to an “African American tier,” allotting just $5 million of its $1.6 billion advertising budget to them.
Moving forward on the premise that Allen has the right to attempt to make his socialistic case citing allegations that Entertainment Studios had been trying since 2009 to obtain a contract from McDonald’s and that the company’s “racist” corporate culture harmed him, Los Angeles US District Judge Fernando Olguin ruled in favor of the comedian turned media mogul but did not address the merits of his case.
McDonalds might be a lot of things — major contributors to heart disease for example — but they aren’t a racist organization.
— Thomas Matthew (@latayprime) September 21, 2022
“Taken together, and construed in the light most favorable to plaintiffs, plaintiffs have alleged sufficient facts to support an inference of intentional discrimination,” Olguin asserted in his decision.
Loretta Lynch, an attorney representing the fast food giant, pointed out that the judge did not rule on the merits of the case and called the allegations baseless.
“[The decision] has nothing whatsoever to do with the merits of the case, but simply allows Mr. Allen to continue to try, as he has for more than a year now, to substantiate his speculative and conclusory claims,” she charged. “We believe the evidence will show that there was no discrimination and that Entertainment Studios’ claims are meritless.”
If 13% of the population accounts for 40% of your sales…it means you don’t need to spend extra to advertise to them. You need to advertise to the remaining 87% of the population that is under utilizing. Basic economics. There’s no case
— ATorres (@ATorres1818) September 21, 2022
“Plaintiffs’ groundless allegations ignore both McDonald’s legitimate business reasons for not investing more on their channels and the company’s long-standing business relationships with many other diverse-owned partners,” she said according to Reuters.
In a statement released to the press, Allen commented that the case was “about economic inclusion of African American-owned businesses in the U.S. economy. McDonald’s takes billions from African American consumers and gives almost nothing back. The biggest trade deficit in America is the trade deficit between white corporate America and Black America, and McDonald’s is guilty of perpetuating this disparity. The economic exclusion must stop immediately.”
An earlier version of the lawsuit was dismissed by the same judge in November. He found no proof of intentional and purposeful discrimination against Allen’s companies.
It was dismissed once, it’ll be dismissed again. You can’t tell a company how to spend their advertising dollars.
— Mike (@Mike0243) September 21, 2022
McDonald’s vowed in May 2021 to boost national advertising spending with black-owned media to 5 percent from 2 percent by 2024.
This is not the first time the company has been sued over racial discrimination either.
Dozens of black franchise owners accused McDonald’s in 2020 of sending them on a “financial suicide mission” by forcing them to open outlets in poor black neighborhoods.
“McDonald’s proclaims a commitment to racial equality, profits from its black customers yet places black franchisees in locations that are destined to fail,” the complaint noted.
As expected, McDonald’s denied the claim.
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