Black activists and politicians force Trader Joe’s grocery out: Claim too many whites would come

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Michael Lotfi is a Persian, American political analyst and adviser living in Nashville, Tennessee where he works as the executive state director for the Tenth Amendment Center. Lotfi graduated in the top 5% of his class with top honors from Belmont University, an award winning, private university located in Nashville, Tennessee.
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PORTLAND, Ore., February 7, 2014– According to local media outlet, The Oregonian (Highlighted by the Associated Press), African American activists and politicians forced the Trader Joe’s grocery chain to drop their plans for a new store in a predominately black community because the store would “increase the desirability of the neighborhood,” for “non-oppressed populations.”

“We run neighborhood stores, and our approach is simple,” said the grocery chain. “If a neighborhood does not want a Trader Joe’s, we understand, and we won’t open the store in question.”

The Portland Development Commission offered a substantial discount to the grocery chain for a two acre parcel of land that appraised for $2.9 million. The land, which sat undeveloped for years, was offered to the chain for $500,000 in an attempt to bring high paying jobs and prosperity to the neighborhood. The construction project, which was to include a two large anchor buildings and 10 retail shops, was promised to an African American owned construction company.

The Portland African American Leadership Forum, along with the Mayor Charlie Hales, sent letters to Portland Development Commission citing that they were “contributing to the destructive impact of gentrification and displacement of the African American community.” They also said that they would remain opposed to all development of the land that doesn’t solely benefit African Americans.

Hales did concede that he felt the Trader Joe’s could be a good fit, but other leaders weren’t budging.

The grocery chain is based out of California and regularly makes headlines for their revolutionary business model that brings discount health-foods and products to neighborhoods. Also, the chain is continuously praised as one of the highest paying grocers in the world. New employees start out at $10-20/hr., supervisors make $45k-75k/yr. and store managers bring in six-figure salaries. Also, the company makes regular contributions to employee 401k accounts.

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4 comments for “Black activists and politicians force Trader Joe’s grocery out: Claim too many whites would come

  1. Elddir Nibor
    March 25, 2014 at 4:27 pm

    Reminds me of the 60′s 70′s and 80′ when young black kids who tried to be successful in school were beat up and bullied by the black community for wanting to be like…”whitey”.

  2. Rosie
    February 10, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    I agree with Kirk, other way around it would be racist!!!!

  3. Dee Dee
    February 10, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    I have a question for the admin. Why use “black” activists versus just activists? For instance, my community has formed a petition/group before that our little town paper did an article on and I am in a predominately white area but nobody said white activists want to bring liquor by the drink to their podunk town. Another example, in the post below this one on your Facebook page where you posted the exact same story, used as the status was, “According to activists and the black mayor too many white people would come… ” and yet the mayor is white. I mean I see how obvious this is to get everybody riled up to hate some complete strangers but at a minimum, and seeing how your tagline is “News You Can Trust”, get the simple stuff straight, it just looks dumb. Oh, I found that on Google by the way. That’s G-O-O-G-L-E. Why does it bother you so bad that they didn’t want a Trader Joe’s? You honestly don’t see how ridiculous that is? Would you even give two sh*** about it had the activists been white? It’s pathetic and those even more pathetic are the ones lapping this twaddle piece up and reacting with anger about it. It’s just a Trader Joe’s people, you’re going to be just fine, promise. Oh, you should post links to the letters you’re talking about, they actually make really strong points for this community.

  4. kirk
    February 10, 2014 at 1:20 am

    but if the shoe where on the other foot and whites said this about a black food store or any other store we would be raciest .. that race card goes both ways ! but then again it is Portland ! you wana stay a slum .. so be it !!

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