Actor and economist Ben Stein kicked a hornet’s nest Monday when he previewed a conversation on woke corporate culture by making breakfast for dinner, reminiscing about his favorite “large, African-American, woman chef.”
Trolling leftists is a pastime for some. Trolling leftists using multiple platforms where you are free from the digital flaming torches and pitchforks of the cancel culture mob, however, that may just be an art form, and Stein needed less than a minute to set their tempers flaring.
Before sitting down for the latest episode of his podcast, “The World According to Ben Stein,” where he would be joined by former Environmental Protection Agency chief of staff Mandy Gunasekara to chat about the “Inherent ‘racism’ of America’s Corporate Culture,” the host shared a video posted to Rumble on his Truth Social account, waxing fondly about Aunt Jemima pancake syrup.
“Here I am. This is the kitchen of our house in Malibu. It’s dark but it’s a beautiful starry evening and I am about to do something which I sometimes do which is make breakfast for dinner,” he explained as he picked up one of several bottles he had on his counter. “Aunt Jemima, yummy, pancake syrup.”
“Now this used to show a large, African-American, woman chef but because of the inherent racism of America’s corporate culture they decided to make it a white person, maybe no person at all,” he explained. “But I prefer it when it was a black person showing their incredible skill at making pancakes. So God bless you all and have a good evening and love to you all in America from Malibu, California.”
Stein was calling back to the 2020 decision by Quaker Oats to remove the image of a black woman from the product line, revamped over the years from the original design featuring a kerchief-adorned model, that ultimately resulted in a 2021 rebrand from Aunt Jemima to Pearl Milling Company.
At the time, descendants of Nancy Green, the original Aunt Jemima and alleged creator of the famed brand’s pancake mix, spoke out against the move the corporate owners made without concern over their feelings.
Marcus Hayes had said, “She’s just not a character … I really want her legacy to be told. That this is a real person. And this was her recipe. And she fed the world from her flapjacks.”
Lillian Richard was another model hired over the years to represent Aunt Jemima and her descendant Vera Harris had said, “I was, I was taken aback. I was really shocked. I knew people didn’t realize that those were real people and, you know, to phase them out, would kind of erase their history.”
Here's what cancel culture has done just to name one.
Nancy Green, the face of Aunt Jemima, initially created the pancake brand and later became one of America's first Black millionaires ! pic.twitter.com/z8PIGJmL6M
— Tony Ray (@trayj57) February 16, 2023
“No time ever have I heard anyone in my community say that this image was one that was derogatory,” Hayes went on. “So I don’t know where that sentiment is coming from.”
Of course, there’s no mystery where the sentiment comes from as outrage spread across social media over Stein’s short video which no doubt elicited precisely the kind of response he would have expected.
I’m curious how he’d feel if it was a blatantly racist picture of a Jewish person advertising a savings account.
— Nathan Quarry (@NateRockQuarry) February 21, 2023
Ah, a Log Cabin syrup republican
— Razzball (@Razzball) February 21, 2023
A prime example of “When you don’t know the context and history behind a conversation you should just STFU and listen”.
— Nnedi Okorafor, PhD (@Nnedi) February 21, 2023
Is it just me or has he evolved to one of Batman’s villains…..I’m just saying; he jumped from the has been actor to now leaving bombs in Gotham! With awesome lines like pic.twitter.com/CEto8zu2Gj
— Black Knight Discussions (@BK_Discussions) February 22, 2023
He’s pissed he can’t send his assistant to the store for the “syrup with the Black lady on it” anymore.
— you don’t know me (@la_crawley) February 21, 2023
When right wingers referred to their “black friend”, they were talking about a picture on a syrup bottle.
— Dave N. (@Autolykos_84) February 21, 2023
Despite his Jewish heritage, Ben Stein pines for the days when white people could comfortably surround themselves with racial stereotypes – blackface minstrel shows, Little Black Sambo books, Uncle Remus telling tar baby tales – and revel in their false sense of supremacy.
— Michael Dominowski (@dominowski) February 21, 2023
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