Sticking true to their mantra of “love what you do, and do good too,” ice-cream mavens Ben and Jerry’s have begun using their popularity as a catalyst for the Black Lives Matter movement.
On Thursday, Oct. 6 the Vermont-based company published a Tweet endorsing the Black Lives Matter movement.
The tweet, which read “Black Lives Matter. Choosing to be silent in the face of such injustice is not an option,” has since been liked over 85,000 times and shared over 60,000, was accompanied by a statement imploring their fans to take a stand against systemic racism in America.
“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,” says the statement signed by Your Friends at Ben & Jerry’s. “To not just listen, but to truly understand those whose struggle for justice is real, and not yet complete.”
The company notes that systemic and institutionalized racism needs to be addressed and that silence around these issues equals complicity in the violence against black people. The only way the country can begin finding solutions to racism is to understand and acknowledge that there is a problem.
“They matter because the injustices they face steal from all of us — white people and people of color alike,” reads the statement. “They steal our very humanity.”
This year alone, at least 201 black people have been killed due to police encounters, according to The Guardian. The ice cream company said it’s difficult to watch this list grow, and despite the different attitudes and experiences black people have towards law enforcement compared to white people, it’s the company’s “moral obligation” to stand up for black lives.
Make no mistake, it’s not saying that it’s anti-cop nor does the Vermont-based company place all the blame on individuals. Yet, it added that it would like to work towards equal justice for everyone by helping to dismantle institutionalized racism
However, despite this reasoning, the statement has received an increasing amount of backlash on social media, with many users threatening to boycott the company.
“Ben&Jerry’s makes delicious ice cream. But every time you spend $8 on one of their flavours you’re lining the pockets of cop hating communists,” said Twitter user Harry Khachatrian.
Yet, folks on Twitter showed support for the brand and it’s stance on Black Lives Matter by hilariously predicting it’s next black-inspired flavor of ice cream using the hashtag #BenAndJerrysNewFlavor. A few samplings of flavors include “I Have a Cream,” “NAACPeach” and “Hands Up, Don’t Scoop.”
Ben & Jerry’s is taking a stance against the police brutality that’s been plaguing the black community. And the company wants us all to do the same.