Papa John’s Pizza CEO blames NFL anthem protests for flagging pizza sales

Papa John Schnatter

I don’t like pizza! Flame on, but I’ve never liked pizza, mostly because the smell of melted cheese makes me nauseous. But since I am an American, I am forced to have an opinion of Papa John’s Pizza. From what I’ve heard from the pizza-lovers who surround me, Papa John’s isn’t all that. It’s greasy cardboard, a hot mess, whatever you want to call it. I was already primed to not give a sh-t about Papa John’s pizza because of the way the company is branded, leaning in heavily with the red-state football-lovers, country music fans and NASCAR peeps. In case you couldn’t tell from those dog-whistles, it turns out that “Papa” John Schnatter, the CEO of his family pizza chain, doesn’t like the whole “kneeling for the anthem” thing. He doesn’t like it when black football players behave like “the inmates running the prison,” to quote Bob McNair.

Executives from Papa John’s, the official pizza company of the NFL, expressed disappointment on a conference call Wednesday about the league’s ongoing player protests during the national anthem.

“The NFL has hurt us,” company founder and CEO John Schnatter said. “We are disappointed the NFL and its leadership did not resolve this.”

Executives said the company has pulled much of its NFL television advertising and that the NFL has responded by giving the company additional future spots. Later in the day, a spokesman clarified that the spots themselves weren’t being pulled, just the NFL shield or “official sponsor” designation on those spots.

“Leadership starts at the top, and this is an example of poor leadership,” Schnatter said, noting he thought the issue had been “nipped in the bud” a year and a half ago. In revising sales estimates for the next quarter, Papa John’s president and chief operating officer Steve Ritchie said on the call that the NFL deal was the primary suspect behind the decline and that “we expect it to persist unless a solution is put in place.”

Ritchie said that research has found that Papa John’s has been the most recognized sponsor associated with the NFL for two years running, which he said means the company’s performance can track with that of the league. Papa John’s has a deal with not only the NFL, but also with 23 individual teams. Company executives declined to disclose exactly how much money in projected sales Papa John’s lost from its association with the NFL and declining ratings, which mean fewer people are ordering their product for game days, they said. Papa John’s stock was down 8.5 percent on Wednesday.

[From ESPN]

Meh. If Papa John is going to throw a hissy about black football players exercising their free speech, maybe he should pull his advertising money from the NFL. Just take that ad money to NASCAR and the Country Music Awards and that way he won’t have to deal with any black folks, I guess. I continue to be flabbergasted by just how often all of these old white dudes are revealing their true feelings, by the way. I mean, I expect this from Donald Trump, obviously. But for the CEO of a pizza chain to enter into this discussion and needing this to be a moment for the NFL to “nip this in the bud” (like football players are wayward children) and ORDER football players to stand for the anthem is… ridiculous.

Embed from Getty Images

Photos courtesy of Getty, WENN.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

138 Responses to “Papa John’s Pizza CEO blames NFL anthem protests for flagging pizza sales”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. lightpurple says:

    Dear Racist Sexist Moron: perhaps you should try making a better product? My household has watched every Patriots game this season and had pizza delivered before each game or at halftime. But we get our pizza from local family owned businesses, choosing the ones with the better pizza, or local chain Regina’s, whose product is far superior to yours. I don’t even know if you have a shop in my area. I strongly support the players exercising their First Amendment rights, just as I support the ACA, another thing you claimed was ruining your business, and just as I support a women’s right to control her own body, yet another of your pet peeves. You know, maybe people are just choosing to go elsewhere because of your obnoxious views combined with your bland product?

    • Mermaid says:

      Agree!!! Will never order Papa John’s pizza again. I also will never get Jimmy John’s because the owner is a big game hunter. Good to know who the awful people are.

    • Tate says:

      Well said, LP. I will just add that I would rather eat the cardboard box his “pizza” comes in rather than the actual pizza.

    • C-No says:

      Saaaaame. (There’s a Papa John’s on Washington in Brighton. I have never been there and never will.)

    • FORTYFOUR says:

      Yeah I’m not giving PJ’s my business ever again.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      yeah, I’d say his political stance and position on social issues is what is driving his pizza sales down.

      or, as you mentioned, the fact that people are realizing they’d rather pay a couple bucks more (and sometimes not even that) for MUCH better pizza from a local place.

      and not that I’m a fan of Domino’s, but the dude used to work for them and pretty much straight up stole their sauce recipe. should have made his own, would prob be better!

      • jwoolman says:

        If he stole the sauce from Domino’s, he must have gotten the recipe very wrong… I like Domino’s pizza, also Pizza Hut and Pizza King. But when I tried Papa John’s, the sauce had such a weird off taste. I tried it more than once also, although not in recent decades. Definitely his sauce doesn’t taste anything like Domino’s to me.

      • whatWHAT? says:

        I don’t eat either, but a friend of mine who owns several Dominos franchises relayed this to me. I think the original PJ sauce was the same as Dominos but he was threatened with some sort of legal action and he changed it slightly.

    • Stacye310 says:

      +1,000,000

      The pizza is also way overpriced for what you get. There is a local gas station chain that makes better pizza. A gas station makes better pizza.

    • erbs says:

      +10,000. Papa John’s pizza sucks. You can’t blame that on the NFL.

    • Kitten says:

      Yup. We get our pizza from Brewer’s Fork in Chucktown, LightPurple. Just a couple blocks up the street–awesome pizza, awesome beer list, great place to make my boyfriend watch the Patriots lol.

    • BrandyAlexander says:

      Meh. I stopped eating his pizza when he publicly complained that the Affordable Care Act would make him have to supply his employees with insurance and cause him to raise the price of his pizza’s by $0.50. I mean, I would definitely pay an extra 50 cents so his employees could have health insurance. But the kicker was – this was in the middle of his 1 million free pizza giveaway NFL promotion. He can kick sand. And the Applebee’s CEO was saying the same thing. I haven’t eaten there since either.

      • Swan Lake says:

        So did we. He showed his political leanings when he took that position on the ACA, and Peyton Manning showed his by opening Papa John franchises.

    • JosieH says:

      “My household has watched every Patriots game this season…”

      Patriots = Big Trump supporters

      • Kitten says:

        Oh please almost every single NFL owner donated to Trump’s campaign. Additionally the Jets owner was offered an ambassador (AKA cake gig) in his administration and he happily took it.

        Seriously, people, do you boycott every institution that has employed someone who donated to Trump? Good f*cking luck with that. Also, maybe google Renaissance Technologies and see how many institutions have investments in the Mercers. Hope you boycott Columbia university, Michigan state, and the national Academy of Sciences.

        Remember that without Mercer we have no Trump.

      • Esmom says:

        Kitten, I hear you. The Cubs owners are problematic, except for the Hillary-supporting daughter who seems cool. But all my Trump-hating friends still wholeheartedly support the Cubbies.

    • Lilly says:

      Well-said.

    • Stella in NH says:

      AMEN!!

    • Frida says:

      Never forget: Payton Manning hugged this douche before his own wife and family after winning the Super Bowl. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=100&v=d2iy5y0YjGM

  2. S says:

    Yeah, forget protesting police brutality and racial profiling that is killing and jailing voiceless young black men in terrifying, community destroying numbers … Won’t you please think of the millionaire CEOs selling sub-par foodstuffs, instead? I mean, those hair plugs, botox shots and whatever else busted Jon Voigt up there has going on aren’t going to pay for themselves solely via pathetically low wages and lack of health-care for his employees. C’mon people, man’s got a 40,000 sq. ft mansion in Kentucky to maintain! Imagine having a 40,000 sq. ft. house … In Kentucky.

  3. Indiana Joanna says:

    Of course lower sales have nothing to do with shilling a low quality product.

    The athletes who are kneeling are behaving with more statesmanlike dignity than drump or pizza man. drump and pizza man are full of self pity for their own inadequacies.

    • bleu_moon says:

      Papa John’s is suffering because there is more and better competition in the “franchise/fast food pizza” market now. I believe that is called “capitalism” when it favors conservatives and “someone else’s fault” when it doesn’t.

  4. Nicole says:

    There’s nothing that white People wont blame black people for. It’s exhausting.
    Blame your crappy pizza a-hole

  5. Jaded1 says:

    So because he advertises with the NFL, people aren’t buying his pizza? Wouldn’t those people be the same ones that should adore his political views? Schnatter is known for years to be very right wing. You’d think people would support him through the hard times. Maybe now that they see him suffering and issuing hate statements, they will rally and the stocks will rise again. For the record, the pizza isn’t very good and I won’t even slum for it since the whole health benefits debacle.

    • jwoolman says:

      I doubt anybody even thinks about it.

    • Dutch says:

      His statements smack of an executive hearing only what he wants to hear. That “official pizza of the NFL” sponsorship probably costs around $15 million per year. I’m sure their marketing people projected a percentage bump in sales as a result of the partnership. That bump hasn’t happened in part because the NFL brand has been dinged in the past few years because of bad games, few stars, the rise of streaming platforms, the concussion issue, domestic violence and, yes, the protests. All PJ’s brain heard was the protests so that is what he ran with.

  6. Pedro45 says:

    I love that second tweet so much.

  7. Bazoo says:

    So everyone who follows NASCAR or likes country music is a racist? Hmmm.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Don’t pretend that there aren’t concentrations of racists who flock to country music and NASCAR. Not everyone but enough to earn the accusation.

    • LouLou says:

      In my experience from living in the South: yes

    • Pedro45 says:

      @Bazoo, “reverse racism” isn’t a thing. Stop.

    • Merritt says:

      Racists often flock to both. And people who stand by while those around them do and say racist things are also racist.

      • Bazoo says:

        And bigotry begins with stereotyping. It’s wrong no matter who does it and makes the racial divides even deeper. People need quit categorizing people and look at them as individuals. Most of us all want the same thing, to live a life of peace and happiness.

      • Kitten says:

        “People need quit categorizing people and look at them as individuals.”

        Tell that to police officers who only see a *black man* and not an individual when they pull out their guns.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      not everyone. but you’d be naïve and/or disingenuous to deny that a WHOLE LOTTA THEM are.

  8. You’re as gross as your pizza Papa John.

  9. Michelle says:

    Not appreciating this particular form of protest doesn’t make you racist. People also tend to dislike when the flag is burned. Additionally, many Americans cannot practice peaceful protest in the workplace or while wearing attire branded with corporate insignia. So, please forgive those who appreciate an individual’s right to protest but find this method divisive and distasteful. Particularly when none of these individuals were protesting until Trump challenged their egos. Trump is a total moron, but we’re kididng ourselves if we think this is more about black rights than inflated egos.

    • Merritt says:

      Then those people haven’t read the US Flag Code, since burning is actually the proper way to dispose of a flag. And many of those same people who are so offended by peaceful protest, have no problem with other violations of the flag code, since they have nothing to say about the flag being used as clothing.

      • Michelle says:

        I am somewhat familiar with the flag code (by no means an expert) and also pretty sure that burning a flag in effigy isn’t meant to be a respectful disposal. I just think it’s unfair to label people as racist for not liking a particular form of protest – it doesn’t mean you disagree with the message and it certainly doesn’t mean you agree with the current policies. Our country has always been more than the current leader or at least I thought so

    • Pedro45 says:

      This is nothing like protests using flag burning
      Also, Colin Kaepernick started protesting over a year ago and isn’t playing right now so it’s not a reaction to Trump. It has nothing to do with egos, except for Trump’ s obviously.

      Nice try though. You should read up on the issue next time.

    • detritus says:

      You think this protest is about inflated egos? That’s it?
      Not about black lives, not about racial violence and hate, not about the systemic issues people of colour face in regards to employment, access to public services, and representation? Not about Flint, or Trayvon, or Sandra. Or even about Trump and his cabinet of racists. No. It’s about egos?

    • Enough Already says:

      Michelle
      To argue with you would be an insult to poc who are sick and fucking tired of pleading their case. So please close the door on your way out and while you’re at it, buy a calendar with last year’s NFL schedule on it alongside Trump’s tweet timeline.

    • Radley says:

      The only way to get America’s attention is to snatch America out of its comfort zone. I love it (meaning I hate it) when people think change comes easily to people who take extreme measures to maintain their privilege every single day. Institutionalized racism is distasteful to me. Which is worse?

      It’s either the bullet or the ballot. It’s either peaceful protest or riots. You cannot marginalize people indefinitely. Come to the table now. Be fair now. Pay attention to the reason for the protests now. And f#ck your feelings. This issue at hand is far more important.

      • Michelle says:

        This is fair and I agree. That is the only way to implement change. It just feels like we’re attacking people and equating what they feel is disrespectful to our country to racism rather than trying to have a conversation. I’m actually not arguing my own perspective about the kneeling – that doesn’t particularly bother me and I completely find it preferable to riots and violence. I do think it’s become more about ego as very few people were kneeling with kaepernick, and not a lot of those same people were standing up for him when it was unpopular. Maybe it’s even ok that the protests have been enlarged due to ego because it’s encouraging more conversation about the topic than it did when it was only a few guys. I just don’t feel like anything will change if we continue attacking and dismissing people rather than trying to encourage conversation.

      • Radley says:

        Michelle, peaceful protest is a constitutionally protected right. It’s actually disrespectful to the United States of America to ignore the fact that people have fought and died to protect dissent.

        I also side-eye the heck outta you attributing the increase in protests to ego rather than more players understanding the need and the importance of them taking a stand especially in light of them being called things like sob’s and inmates. Your line of thinking is disturbing to say the least.

      • Michelle says:

        I’m not sure how you inferred that I don’t support peaceful protest by my agreeing with your comment. My suggestion was to encourage conversation and education rather than immediately dismissing people as racist for believing that it’s disrespectful not to stand for the anthem.

        You can side eye my line of thinking, but the reality is that most players didn’t start kneeling until they were personally offended by Trump’s and the Texans coach’s comments. I’m sure that many of them are seeing the issues in a new light and really trying to make a meaningful stand. But you shouldn’t be naive enough to think there isn’t ego at play. Which of them are continuing the works and protests off the field and really utilizing their platforms to try and change things?

    • blogdis says:

      Uuhm Colin Kaepernick started kneeling when Obama was president

      • Michelle says:

        That’s correct, Kaepernick was the only one. No one really stood/sat with him when it truly was about injustice. But when egos are challenged, people suddenly kneel in droves – essentially when there is little chance for retribution or repercussion. I respect Kaepernick for taking the chance and standing up for what he believes in, and he’s certainly paying the price. It’s hard to convince me that’s what it is still about when not very many people were kneeling with Kaepernick last year.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Yes, it does make you a racist.
      Black men peacefully protesting about black men being shot and murdered by police and an unfair justice system is the right thing to do. How did this become an issue about the flag and twisted into such an obtuse argument?
      Are you as disgusted when white supremacist use the flag in their marches to spread hate and violence?
      Let me see kneeling for a minute or murdering Heather and threatening citizens to protest the removal of Confederate statues? Carrying the flag and assaulting an interracial couple or kneeling for 75 seconds where no one comes to harm? Both are exercising their constitutional rights, but I guess hate trumps justice. (pun not intended but it fits)

      Overlooking the obvious egregious double standard makes the statement racist. How about American flag sex toys including booty plugs, vibrators and g strings? No problem?
      Black men asking for justice and fair treatment is just so spitting on the divine flag. How dare they!
      Why our precious, sacred flag is a symbol of all that men died for and hold dear as their lives are torn asunder on battlefields in the name of democracy should be respected, and the fact that some people stick it in their butt just cause is fine. No probs. Sure…ok.

    • Snowflake says:

      Why is it divisive? Because it strikes a nerve? Because we know it’s true? One of my neighbors told my husband he has a nice setup. Because he assumed I was footing all the bills. One of my husband’s former colleague workers “joked” that this was a white bathroom, my husband said, well, I’m part white. The guy told him that wasn’t enough. We went out to outback for Valentine’s day, we had a couple in camoflague clothing with there baby, stare at us the whole time we were there. When we were at Denny’s, the cook gave me dirty looks behind my husband’s back. That’s the most common, stares and dirty looks. I didn’t know many black people before I met my husband. But being with him has shown me racism truly exists. I always believed that, but never knew it was so bad. And those are minor incidents. My husband is 6 ft 2in and 250 pounds. I kinda we are spared some harrassment because he is so big. Because it strikes a nerve, that shows we all know the football players are right. That’s the issue, not whether they do it at work or patriotism. If we are true Patriots, we will care about all our citizens.

    • Nicole says:

      Really Michelle? He began kneeling before Trump. At the start of the last season. Also he’s said why he’s kneeling over and over. When you criticize how people protest you minimize their action which is exactly what racist do to rework the conversation.
      Sounds like you have more in common with trump because your comment is frankly BS.

      • third ginger says:

        White people, especially older white people [ my demographic], for God’s sake, please stop telling people of color HOW and WHEN and WHAT to protest!!! Also, stop with the “they just need to sit down for a calm discussion.” These sentiments are saying far more about you than about the young men exercising their constitutional rights.

      • Michelle says:

        I can’t reply to third ginger directly but that comment is also fair. I think that is the kind of argument that will help people understand that disliking this form of peaceful protest is perpetuating the cycle that is being protested…no method of protest will be ever really be tasteful. Whether you believe it or not, my comment was meant to trigger conversation to help me educate not only myself but the people I interact with who immediately dismiss the protest because they find it disrespectful. This is actually a comment I can use when grandmothers and others start complaining and saying they will stop watching the NFL.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      “How did this become an issue about the flag and twisted into such an obtuse argument?”

      Because having to face their own racism (or that of people close to them) makes some white folk uncomfortable. so, they twist it to make themselves blameless and make the protesters out to be disrespectful.

      “Why is it divisive? Because it strikes a nerve? Because we know it’s true?”

      YAAAAAASSSS. exactly why. People like Michelle don’t want to have to face that there is still a sh*t ton of racism, both personal and institutional, left in this world.

    • jwoolman says:

      Kneeling is not a gesture of disrespect, quite the opposite. It is traditionally a prayerful gesture. They aren’t yelling or chanting or bothering anyone. They’re just very quietly kneeling when the national anthem is sung or the flag pledge is recited. I don’t think anybody should be forced to stand during such activities, but I’m especially baffled about why anyone would interpret kneeling as disrespect.

      Plus the switch from sitting to kneeling on one knee was actually suggested by a veteran because it’s a custom to kneel that way at the graveside of another soldier killed in action. Which seemed especially appropriate in this case.

      • Michelle says:

        Older people do, and I would rather educate them why it’s perpetuating the problem to think that way than to immediately dismiss them as racist. Maybe they are but just maybe they will listen if we speak to them rather than just call them racist and white supremacists

    • Mabs A'Mabbin says:

      @Michelle, why take a knee? Players normally take knees when someone is hurt or something important is happening on the field. Taking a knee is done to show respect to players, coaches, etc. So why take a knee during the anthem? The act itself is respectful to begin with. To do so during the anthem is their way to respectfully say something is wrong, needs attention and through their silent reflection, we should be honored they chose to kneel instead of walking out (like our VP). Nevermind I’m probably wasting breathe.

      • JosieH says:

        And what about the players who sit on their butts during the anthem?

      • D Train says:

        “Players normally take knees when someone is hurt or something important is happening on the field. Taking a knee is done to show respect to players, coaches, etc. So why take a knee during the anthem? The act itself is respectful to begin with. To do so during the anthem is their way to respectfully say something is wrong, needs attention and through their silent reflection.”

        This is a beautiful explanation of kneeling and so spot-on. I don’t think many people think about the act of kneeling, and this is a perfect way to explain.

    • erbs says:

      Not ok to kneel, but it’s ok for Dick Trump Jr. to wrap himself in the flag and post a picture on social media. Jesus Christ on a cracker, the freaking flag was touching the floor.

    • Bunbun says:

      Michelle, people had your same mindset during the Civil Rights protest too. I’m sure the same people were saying “So, please forgive those who appreciate an individual’s right to protest but find this method divisive and distasteful.” When black protesters were sitting at lunch counters and boycotting busses.

  10. Mia4s says:

    Hahaha! No.

    But if these protests could lead to a fairer justice system, less violence against POCs, AND no more Papa John’s?! We will reach Nirvana!

    Most unrealistic part of the Ghostbusters reboot: The bizarre neon ghosts? Nope. The interdimentional portal? Nope. It was a group of sophisticated New York women eating Papa John’s. Total fantasy.

  11. Merritt says:

    Or blame the fact that Papa John’s pizza is bland and disgusting. Frozen pizza is better than Papa John’s.

    • third ginger says:

      True. Sadly, we live in a pizza “wasteland” I am still dreaming about the years we visited my grandparents in Scranton. They lived in an apartment above a family owned pizza parlor!!! Best pizza ever.

  12. Shambles says:

    Unpopular opinion: I love(d) Papa Johns pizza. Their sauce is the best of all the “fast food” pizza places. This is why we can’t have nice things, asshole. He always gave me sketchy vibes. I’m trying to go vegan, step by step, so this is one more reason to attempt vegan pizza.

    • Anastasia says:

      Vegan pizza is so easy and delicious. I use almond milk mozz. Then all the veggies I want! (I’m not super big on sauce, so I use olive oil very lightly.)

    • Lady Rain says:

      I second that Shambles…I love(d) Papa John’s pizza more than the other big chains *hangs head in shame*

      I always liked their sauce and soft, chewy crust. Then he had to open his big, dumb mouth and ruin everything. Ugh.

  13. Radley says:

    Papa John’s has been banned in my house for a long time, long before any NFL controversy. He’s a known big Republican donor. Pizza Hut is better anyway.

    • Stacy Dresden says:

      Papa John’s is a large donor to anti choice and abstinence only causes. I had written them off years ago. Mondavi Wines too…and of course the list goes on.

  14. Tiffany says:

    He seems to forget that the downswing started when he released that statement about the Affordable Care Act and how he would have to raise the pizza prices by a couple dollars to provide health care ( but this was only after someone in upper management spill the tear on how they determine work status to avoid paying out health and other benefits).

    Oh wait, he did blame it a black man then. Whoops.

    After the ACA thing, I just stopped buying it.

    • S says:

      It was 11 cents. He complained he’d have to raise prices by 11-15 cents per pizza to provide his employees, who don’t make a living wage, while he lives in a 40,000 sq. ft. mansion with a 22-car underground garage with a full time valet stand, IN HIS HOUSE (no, really), didn’t deserve healthcare over a friggin dime per pizza. Helluva guy.

      • lucy2 says:

        And I remember people OVERWHELMINGLY said they’d happily pay $0.15 more per pizza if it meant a lot of people (people who live and work in their communities) got health insurance. But PJ is a dickhead, and didn’t care.

        We occasionally used to order it in college, and it was crappy then, but I haven’t had it in probably 20 years. After the ACA stuff, I would NEVER be a customer. There’s a family owned place down the block from me, and 2 or 3 others within a mile. I’d much rather contribute to a small business than line a bigoted millionaire’s pockets.

      • Otaku Fairy says:

        That’s Mr. Krabs-level cheapness.

    • Ripley says:

      Exactly. This is when we stopped ordering. 11 cents… I remember Jon Stewart doing a segment asking where oh where he might get that million dollars and then showing the Payton Manning \ Papa John’s free pizza of a million dollars. I bet he’s a Christian too.

  15. smcollins says:

    “Papa” John has shown how awful and out-of-touch he is time and time again. He had a hissy fit over Obamacare, saying he would have to reduce staff and full-time employees because it would cost too much. He lives in a huge mansion with a moat. A MOAT! People who knew him before his pizza (and I use that term loosely because his pizza is not real pizza) business said that he’s always been a douchebag, so this is not surprising.

  16. JustJen says:

    Their pizza sucks. Just totally sucks. And I don’t even know what to say about their “bread sticks”. When my daughter was in elementary school, one of the moms worked at the local PJs and every frickin event she would proudly proclaim that she could order pizza with her employee discount for the volunteers. I always made sure to eat before I left home. The cheese is just…weird. When you pick up a piece of normal pizza, you know how you have that cheese string? PJs doesn’t do that. It just separates like it’s perforated foam. BLECH.

    • third ginger says:

      Just jen, thank you for the laughs. The mom with the employee discount. LOL Sorry anyone had to eat it.

    • pinetree13 says:

      I always wondered if it was just the franchise location near my house but I had it twice and it was literally the worst pizza I have ever had and I am NOT a picky eater. Seriously it was a step below little ceasar’s or Dominoes.

  17. Neelyo says:

    How the hell can anyone take Papa John seriously with that face??? He’s been pulled, tweaked and plucked within an inch of his life.

    With all the shit women are thrown for surgery much less obvious than his I can’t believe he doesn’t get called out on it. It’s like Liberace meets Wayne Newton.

  18. HK9 says:

    This guy should do what most restaurants do when business is slowing down, improve your product & price point. Instead, he’s just confirmed to the world why they should skip his establishment. His bad judgement & willful ignorance is the likely source of his business troubles.

  19. WaterisLife says:

    I blame his eyebrows.

  20. Lizzie says:

    Papa Johns Pizza = TRASH
    Papa John CEO = DOUBLE TRASH
    Papa John CEO dye job = TRIPLE TRASH
    I’d rather starve than eat a piece of that pizza and that was before I knew this guy was a rascist asshole – let the boycott stand.

  21. Annetommy says:

    “Leadership starts at the top”? It surely does. If you are happy with the leader you’ve got, that says a lot about you. None of it positive.

  22. magnoliarose says:

    How about the fact that many of us refuse to support your plastic surgery bills and Manafort level hair chicanery?
    OR
    Your outspoken views and politics turn the stomachs of potential pizza consumers.
    OR
    Your shizz sucks and tastes like gnawing on rubber covered in tomato sauce.

  23. poppy says:

    this is one of those 1% guys that deserves to live in total fear, like he does, in his palatial, heavily guarded home.
    these people know they are truly reviled and that it only takes one disenfranchised person with nothing to lose and nothing to live for (thanks to the 1%’s greed) to pop a cap in his ugly âss.
    look how billy greed gates decided to give away so much $$$$. he knows we know his back stabbing striving and greedy style, so typical of the 1%, is a huge cause of the world’s misery and that many many people would like to see him (and the other 1%) dead. all these creeps are scared shîtless because they know they are causing all the problems, we know it is their fault and we are getting to the point where more people are hopeless and desperate than not.
    french revolution levels hatred building up and off with their heads ain’t far behind.

    it will sound horrible for me to say it but:

    good riddance to bad rubbish.
    this guy, especially.
    cry me a river you can’t treat yourself to a few more cars today.

    ps ur pizza tastes like you decided on another subterranean parking garage for your house so using real foods and selling quality while paying a living wage is out of the question!
    by all means, blame the NFL.

  24. Anastasia says:

    He needs to stop with the botox and Just For Men hair dye and also: BOOOHOOOOHOOOOO. Cry me a river. He’s awful, and his pizza is awful (I’ve had it). We order from a local mom and pop place that makes a pizza SO superior that there’s literally no comparison. It’s like PJ pizza isn’t even real food.

  25. Jerusha says:

    This is the guy who was a big Romney supporter in 2012. He stated that rather than provide health insurance to his employees under ACA, he would cut back their hours or fire people because he’d have to raise the price of his slop by 13 cents. I’ve never been to a PJ, as I don’t like pizza, either, and I added him to my boycott list.

    When it comes to Domino’s, at one time and maybe still, the top man there was the biggest individual contributor to Operation Rescue. You know, the anti-abortion group that pickets clinics and harrasses women. Also publishes the names and addresses of abortion doctors, IIRC. Boycott.

    • third ginger says:

      Jerusha, we have boycotted Dominoes for years. It is hardly a sacrifice. I love actual pizza. LOL

      • Luca76 says:

        I am from NY so I don’t even look at these pizza chains as pizza. what you guys outside of NY are saddled with as pizza is just sickening not real pizza.

      • Jerusha says:

        @Luca76. My sister in Atlanta says there are some good places there. Of course, they are small, independent, usually family venues, no chains. The same here in Mobile, I’m told. I don’t know firsthand because if I go out, it’s not for pizza.

      • IlsaLund says:

        @Luca76. Preach. My Queens born husband has turned me into a pizza snob. New York pizza is the absolute best. I cried tears when the local restaurant changed hands. The original owner was from New York and his pizza was genuine. I haven’t had a decent pizza since.

      • Rose says:

        @Luca76

        I’m from NY too and they have the best pizza, I used to crave it when I lived in California.

      • third ginger says:

        We are only five hours away. I think we need to make a NY pizza run!!

      • magnoliarose says:

        @Luca

        I am a vegan, but I still find delicious pizza all the time in NYC.
        Kesté on Bleeker is my favorite, and my kids love it. Brick oven Neopolitan style followed by Van Leeuwen vegan ice cream. I have to waddle home from pure gluttony.

  26. Square Bologna says:

    I quit buying Papa John’s pizza when I heard about his refusal to provide health benefits for his employees. I hope his mansion falls into a sinkhole.

  27. Susie says:

    Why so hard on country music? :( I like country music, and I don’t like Papa John’s.

  28. Jag says:

    I used to love Papa John’s pizza, but after his comments regarding not wanting to give his employees insurance and cutting hours to do so, I stopped getting it.

    That would be why sales are “flagging.” (Was that a typo in the title or a pun?) :)

  29. Vovicia says:

    Or maybe it’s his entirely ewwww commercials (at least in the UK) where he tells us that there is a ‘little bit of him in every pizza’.
    Yeah uhm…. no thanks.

  30. Laura says:

    Papa John’s has always been fine, IMO… nothing more, nothing less, and if they have the best deal or shortest delivery/pick up time I’ll go with them. But after this… I think I’ll just go to Domino’s.

  31. Shannon says:

    Well, he should blame Donald Trump, because it wasn’t really much of a thing anymore before Trump’s idiot ass started it up again. So this is directly on HIM. I’ve been boycotting them since his whining about the ACA anyway.

  32. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Why on earth would he draw that parallel? Pizza is a common go-to for every kind of get-together period. I have three boys, I can’t even count the times I have ordered pizza, yes… football but every sport known to man, birthdays, block parties, sleepovers, garage sales, movie nights, mom-doesn’t-want-to-cook nights, and on and on and on. If you’re losing sales, it’s because there are better options.

  33. jwoolman says:

    Oh, Papa John. I think it has more to do with your lousy tomato sauce.

  34. lisa says:

    id like to say I’m boycotting them but their pizza is garbage. i cant imagine buying it even if he wasn’t a total jerk

  35. Miss Kittles says:

    Do people still eat at Chik Fil a even though they are openly anti-gay. Or shop at hobby lobby when they refuse to offer birth control with their benefits?
    Should I stop being friends with my conservative friends who strongly support Trump?? (Which I have considered) Sometimes I feel like drawing this line to eliminate people or business/products from our lives b/c they have different beliefs is immature! As much as I disagree with my Trump supporting peers, if I cut them out how could I inform them that trickle down of their decisions/votes! I educate them on planned parenthood, etc! I look at it as an opportunity to make a change in someone’s views or opinions. That’s the benefit to having some diversity in your friendships/peers! Not everyone is going to share your views or come from the same background as you. They have their reasons for why they’ve voted the way the have/do. Just like everyone else.

    • Neelyo says:

      ‘We can disagree and still love each other unless your disagreement is rooted in my oppression and denial of my humanity and right to exist.’
      – Son of Baldwin

      And that, Miss Kittles, is why I as a gay black man will never be friends with a Trump supporter. This is bigger than a disagreement.

      And they would never listen to someone who looked like me.

      • lucy2 says:

        Well said, Neelyo.

        Diversity in the people in your life is great. But I don’t want to be friends with people who are racist. I don’t want to be friends with people who are sexist, or homophobic, or who are intolerant of other religions. There are plenty of things people can disagree on and still be friends, things they can learn from each other, but there are some big things that can’t be ignored.

      • Kitten says:

        PREACH.

      • Miss Kittles says:

        See Neelyo, I disagree. I think there’s Trump supporters out there that would change their views b/c you’re in their life. That’s how they learn! They need to be exposed to other struggles to understand why they’re so wrong! If they have no POC and/or gays in their life to explain to them, how will they know? i do believe most of the Trump supporters are truly ignorant to many struggles they’re voting against. That’s why they need exposed to those lives.
        I do have 1 friend who voted for Trump, that support gays & has them in her life. I am not certain on the reason for her vote. But I do know she is not a racist or homophobic. Just as well as the black people I know who voted for him…. they’re also not racist.

      • Nicole (the Cdn One) says:

        Miss Kittles – that is not Neelyo’s responsibility and he doesn’t need to bear the burden of their racisim and homophobia. And I have news for you: anyone who voted for Trump is either a racist/homophobe or condones racism/homophobia and either way Neelyo is not obliged to subject himself to that for the “greater good”.

      • magnoliarose says:

        There is no way that a person who wasn’t racist would vote for a man who said all the things he said during his campaign. As a Jewish woman, why would I want to be friends with anyone who would accept the alt-right?
        I am on the same page as lucy2.

      • Otaku Fairy says:

        People often seem to forget this point- that it’s not just a matter of disagreements or believing differently.
        Not all people are willing to change. That’s just the truth. That’s one of the reasons why this idea that all anyone on the far right needs is an always polite, always friendly, always understanding (fill-in-the-blank) person to patiently guide them to the other side and help them discover a new level of empathy doesn’t work. Sometimes people are just cautionary tales and their policies, mentalities, and behaviors need to be voted against, condemned, and called out for what they are.
        @Miss Kittles: You don’t have to avoid pro-Trump friends and relatives if you don’t want to, but have you thought about asking this one particular friend whether or not she’d vote for Trump a second time?

    • Mabs A'Mabbin says:

      I’ve lived most my life being that bridge, being Switzerland and utilizing diplomacy to calm arguments at get-togethers. My friends have always told me I had the ability to see both sides and find the middle ground. Not this time. Not now. Not anymore. Not with this climate, not with this administration, not with this ignorance.

      There is no middle ground for decency. We’re beyond diplomatic solutions in this country. This isn’t nuclear peace talks. This is about civility. Our human rights are being attacked in every way possible, and there isn’t room for apologies. I’m not handing a racist the microphone. Do people have the right to be racists? Do men have the right to be mysoginists? In essence do people have the right to despicable human beings? Technically yes, but I will never support a bridge being built to such depravity. I will never ‘try to get along’ with hatred. Me being diplomatic always had a vein of political independence acknowledging the importance of cross-platform issues. Civility is different. Humanity is unto itself and is standalone tantamount. If you don’t posses it, if you don’t acknowledge it, if you don’t teach it and live it, you’re not worthy of being heard.

      • Miss Kittles says:

        Nicole – So how do they learn? Who exposes them? If POC or gays do not want whites or anyone else explaining their struggles, who should? I certainly can’t do it any justice since it’s not my experiences.

      • detritus says:

        Miss Kittles,
        It is the responsibility of allies, of the people who are not hurt, who do not have to face this, to speak up. It is our responsibility to speak up for those who cannot. It is our responsibility to protect those who have been exhausted by the constant onslaught.

        You probably shouldn’t lecture black people on being black, or gay people about being gay, but you have access to groups of people they do not. It is your responsibility to share that truth, even as imperfectly as you will be able. Id say it is part of your responsibilty to also learn how to do so to the best of your ability. We can’t be perfect allies, but we can shoulder part of the burden.

    • poppy says:

      i absolutely refuse to give a company that openly supports oppression my money. having spent an inordinate time in the southeast i am more than proud to have frequently said “i can’t/don’t/won’t give X my business.
      i am nice but direct and if they don’t understand i tell them i feel X group deserves be treated EQUALLY under the law; all people should be treated equally -don’t they agree?

      i am unable to cut some trump voters out of my life but they all know how i feel about him and every other injustice i rage against.
      they knew before he even ran i would never accept any lousy excuse for voting for someone remotely like him and i would forever judge them. they know i am ashamed of their choice. they know they put a heavy toll on our relationship and if they don’t know how lucky it is i work on forgiveness daily they aren’t paying attention.

      you can EASILY not give your $$$$ to a business that loudly promotes disgusting ideologies or harmful practices.
      in fact, it is the very least you should do.

      and do keep trying to change people, that’s not bad. but stop giving $$ to the bad guys please.

  36. Spring says:

    Papa John Schnatter built the most god-awful, 40,000 sq. ft. monument to house his colossal ego — a gaudy, green castle. Yet more proof that money cannot buy good taste, among other qualities. It’s an over-the-top monstrosity; photos here:
    https://www.celebritynetworth.com/articles/celebrity-homes/papa-john-schnatters-600-million-fortune-bought-insane-mansion/

    • Eden75 says:

      Huh. I’m all for the underground garage, but then, I’m a car nut.

      Wouldn’t be my first choice of castle that’s for sure.

      Also, only $7 mil? $7 mil in Vancouver will buy you a nice condo downtown Coal Harbour, maybe……There’s currently a waterfront house of just over 9200 square feet for sale in West Vancouver, BC for $22.68 million. Maybe whoever buys it should look where he bought.

  37. YvetteW says:

    If kneeling lowers his sales, we need to all go out and lay down on the field and get it over with once and for all.

  38. Peaches says:

    Papa John is the worst crap along w pizza hut.
    All of it is just a hodgepodges of nasty.
    I have finally realized getting a pizza from a small mom and pop establishment is way better than what the big chains are selling.

  39. Sara says:

    He is from my town. My uncle and math teacher from high school both had a chance to invest very early and cheaply and they chose not to. Our town isnt the most diverse.