Popcorn
(Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

After Detroit Popcorn Company owner Evan Singer posted racist comments on a Facebook post, community prompts other businesses to cut ties with the concession supply company.

Community members have begun boycotting concession supply business Detroit Popcorn Company after screenshots of racist comments made by its owner circulated on social media Sunday.

The screenshots show the company’s owner Evan Singer commenting, “They wonder why they need knee’s [sic] in there [sic] necks.”

The comment was made under an alias of Even Sangria on a post referencing the killing of 46-year-old Black man George Floyd in Minneapolis by a police officer and the protests that have followed in cities around the country, including in Detroit and in other Michigan cities.

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Social media users determined that Even Sangria’s pictures matched those in a 2019 Oakland Press article about Singer. After initially denying that “Even Sangria” was the company’s owner in social media messages to community members, Singer did admit to making the comments in a Fox2 News interview Monday.

“I said something I shouldn’t have said and I regret saying that now, but it had nothing to do with race,” Singer told Fox2 News.

After the screenshots were initially posted on Facebook, a groundswell of people called for a boycott of the company. Facebook user Dominique Dom posted that she contacted Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner about Singer’s comments and that Quicken Loans had pulled their business with Detroit Popcorn Company.

Quicken Loans Chief Communications Officer Aaron Walker confirmed that Quicken Loans, founded and chaired by Dan Gilbert, had cut ties with Singer’s company.

“Our message is clear: any business working with our Family of Companies must always demonstrate the same purpose, passion and civility.  Those who cannot uphold this standard will not work with us,” Walker wrote in a statement, which he sent to the Detroit Jewish News. “As such, we are immediately severing ties with Detroit Popcorn.”

The Detroit Zoo also announced they’ve stopped doing business with the company.

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Facebook user Jacob Sidock wrote the viral Facebook post calling attention to Singer’s comments under the alias. The post now has over 6,500 shares. Many people have also left poor reviews of Detroit Popcorn Company on Yelp.

“As a black woman, Detroiter and event planner I will NEVER patronize this business again. People like him are the reason we need the #blacklivesmatter campaign,” one user named Natashua S. posted on the company’s Yelp page.

Sidock, who is not Jewish but worked with the Anti-Defamation League while a student at Waterford Mott High School, told the Jewish News he wanted to show his community that fighting for racial justice starts “with the people we spend our money with.”

“If they’re not accepting, if they’re not standing with the people, then it’s something we don’t need in our community,” he said.

Singer became the full owner of 97-year-old Detroit Popcorn Company last year after purchasing David Farber’s shares of the business. The two had previously co-owned the Redford-based company.

Detroit Popcorn Company did not respond to phone calls or emails from the Jewish News.

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