Ben & Jerry’s statement in support of the Black Lives Matter movement this week has inspired Twitter’s most recent trending topic: #BenandJerrysNewFlavor.
“Rocky Road to Equality,” “Brownies vs. Board of Education,” and “We Gon' Be Alright: Fat-Free Vanilla,” were just a few of the suggested names for the manufacturer of ice cream, yogurt and sorbet’s newest additions to their brand.
Thursday, the company released a statement on their website displaying their stance on social inequality in this country.
Chris Miller, social mission activism manager for the company, told NBCBLK that their show of support for the civil rights and social justice movement coincides with their long-lasting commitment to overcoming systemic racism and injustice.
“We have been working for much of the year on matters of social equity,” he said, referencing a campaign they launched in January called Democracy is in Your Hands. “The campaign has focused on two issues – the unlimited amount of big money in the political system and the potential disenfranchisement of black voters through strict voter ID laws.”
“Black Lives Matter,” the statement begins:
“They matter because they are children, brothers, sisters, mothers, and fathers. They matter because the injustices they face steal from all of us — white people and people of color alike. They steal our very humanity.”
Systemic and institutionalized racism are the defining civil rights and social justice issues of our time. We’ve come to understand that to be silent about the violence and threats to the lives and well-being of Black people is to be complicit in that violence and those threats.
We ask you to join us in not being complicit.
There is good news: the first step in overcoming systemic racism and injustice is to simply understand and admit that there is a problem. It’s trying to understand the perspective of others whose experiences are different from our own. To not just listen, but to truly understand those whose struggle for justice is real, and not yet complete.
In the same way that companies like PayPal and the NCAA spoke out against North Carolina’s House Bill 2, dubbed the transgender bathroom bill, Miller said it is time for corporations to also take a stand and speak up in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“We figured now is the time to put a marker out – the corporate community has been largely silent about systemic racism and injustice,” he said. “I would like to encourage more corporations to join with us in this. We cannot develop strategies to overcome until we acknowledge these issues exist.”