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Two Pastors Sue Coca-Cola For Alleged Harm to African-American Community

Two Pastors Sue Coca-Cola For Alleged Harm to African-American Community

Claim they’re “losing more people to sweets than to the streets”

Two pastors have filed suit in Washington D. C. against Coca-Cola claiming that the sugary-soda pop kills more black people than “the streets.”

Citing purposeful advertising “deception” that “obscures” the connection between sugary soft drinks, obesity, and other ailments, the complaint alleges that Coca-Cola intentionally “misleads and deceives” consumers about the horrors of drinking their product.  Indeed, one of the pastors claims that “it is a matter of life and death in our communities.”

CBS News reports:

Two pastors from Washington, D.C., have filed a lawsuit against Coca-Cola and the American Beverage Association saying the organizations have purposely deceived the public about sugar-sweetened beverages and their impact on health.

“The background of this lawsuit is that there’s an epidemic of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and a range of other degenerative diseases in the black and Latino communities, and really throughout America. For me, as a pastor, I see the toll it takes on families and children when they lose their parents much too soon,” Delman Coates, the pastor at Mt. Ennon Baptist Church, in Clinton, Maryland, told CBS News.

The lawsuit was filed Thursday in D.C. Superior Court on behalf of Coates and William Lamar, the senior pastor at the Metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church in Washington, DC.

“It is a matter of life and death in our communities,” Lamar told CBS News.

The pastors apparently believe that their parishioners, upon seeing a Coke commercial, are incapable of understanding that drinking a Coke won’t make them skinny, healthy, and young.

CBS continues:

Coke commercials often feature young, slender people gulping the fizzy beverage, smiling and sharing good times, but the pastors say those images are misleading.

“Marketing for Coca-Cola is focused around health and fun and showing very sexy bodies in their advertising. You never see an obese person. If the people are consuming Coca-Cola at this rate, there is no way those bodies would look like that,” said Lamar.

This lawsuit was previously filed, and then withdrawn, in California.

The Daily Mail reports:

The lawsuit alleges that Coca-Cola and the ABA [American Beverage Association] ran an intentional campaign to confuse consumers about the causes of obesity. In a statement, Coca-Cola dismissed the pastors’ charges and the merits of the earlier lawsuit, which was filed and then withdrawn in California by the same legal team.

‘The allegations here are likewise legally and factually meritless, and we will vigorously defend against them,’ the statement said. ‘The Coca-Cola Company understands that we have a role to play in helping people reduce their sugar consumption.’

The ABA also called the allegations in the lawsuit ‘unfounded.’

The pastors see things differently. Lamar said he is tired of presiding over funerals for parishioners who died of heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

Coates said he has seen members of his congregation give their infants bottles filled with sugary drinks and that it has ‘become really clear to me that we’re losing more people to the sweets than to the streets.’

‘There’s a great deal of misinformation in our communities, and I think that’s largely a function of these deceptive marketing campaigns,’ Coates said.

Watch the report:


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With over $3 trillion in tax money, and trillions more in corporations, it’s so tempting to play the lawsuit lotto.

Of course if you’re a politician, then you try to get into position to direct large chunks of that $3 trillion to friends who pay you back.

Social industrial complex conspires with the legal industrial complex for progress and profit.

    JOHN B in reply to n.n. | July 16, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    The ones who should have to pay these claims are all the black Coke employees, officers, directors and shareholders.

    They did this to their own people and, if you listen to these phony pastors, they knew what they were doing.

rabid wombat | July 15, 2017 at 7:39 pm

You can go after Coke and others after: US Govt and others for welfare, Planned Parenthood, Gangs…

Coke Slurpee sounds pretty good about now.

    JusticeDelivered in reply to puhiawa. | July 17, 2017 at 9:49 am

    Some people are smart enough to drink Coke in moderation, it appears that a group averaging an IQ of 85 is not smart enough to do so.

there has got to be a grape soda joke buried in there somewhere…..

The Coca-Cola tactic is pretty well-established. It’s repeated in urban area after urban area across this country. The cruelty is indescribable.

Coca-Cola employees, svelte, attractive and attractively dressed, enter the homes of these black kids, using force if necessary, and place loaded pistols against the temples of these kids and their parents. Then they force them, force them, I tell ya, force these kids to drink all sorts of Coca-Cola products. And they happily give these kids second helpings when these kids, with smiles on their faces, say, “More, please.”

Then they repeat the same scenario the next day. Then the day after the next day, and on and on without end.

These kids are powerless, utterly powerless, in the face of the massive corporate wiles of this heartless corporation.

Plaintiffs: “We ask this Court to give us immediate relief.”

The Court: “Why would this Court do that? Isn’t that the pause that refreshes?”

“But, Your Honor, don’t let that ad deceive you. The Coca-Cola employee with the loaded gun is behind the big red circle.”

    JusticeDelivered in reply to fscarn. | July 17, 2017 at 9:53 am

    Then those kids mug those ruthless white Coke employees, steal their guns and kill each other in large numbers.

    Jackie in reply to fscarn. | July 17, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    If they win this they can sue Little Debbie, Hostess etc. Any food you can leave on the shelf for years without refrigeration has to be bad for you. What about Bacon. Do they sue the Bacon manufacturers? How about red meat?

One has to hope that this is just about them money [it probably is]. Just think of the fallout if this type of thing was actually taken seriously. First it is sugary drinks. Then candy, cakes and other deserts. Then it is red meat [heart failure, you know]. Then caffeinated beverages [coffee, tea, colas, etc]. What about starches [obesity}. And so on. This is just the food side of the equation. What about things that cause injury or death. Playground equipment is already going the way of the dinosaur. What about escalators? Automatic doors? Revolving doors? Doors, in general? Stairs? Ramps of greater than 5 degrees grade? Windows in buildings greater than one story. Stoves [cause fires]? Sports venues [baseball and hockey will require a dome over the field to separate it from the spectators]? Golf? And, of course the most dangerous article ever imagined by mankind, the automobile?

Yes, let’s hope this is simply about the money. Otherwise, the potential ramifications are mind boggling. I nned a carbonated sugar beverage to calm my nerves.

    pilgrim1949 in reply to Mac45. | July 17, 2017 at 8:41 am

    …..and when they came after that, still I didn’t speak up.

    Then, one day when they came after the air conditioners (dehydrates the air too much) and the municipal tap water (contaminated with specific compounds formulated to only adversely affect the black community, doncha know), there was no one left to protest.

    Or something like that???

      JusticeDelivered in reply to pilgrim1949. | July 17, 2017 at 9:57 am

      Flint Michigan has already pulled the water scam. They neglected to maintain their water system for the past 60 years, systematically squandered water fund service fees, and then blame white people for the consequences.

“We’re losing more people to the sweets than to the streets”

This catchy phrase is owned exclusively by the Jesse Jackson School of Rhyming; all rights reserved

My pastor tells me every week things that are hard for me to hear. I listen to him, and I keep going back. These pastors must not have much sway with their congregations.

“There’s a great deal of misinformation in our communities, and I think that’s largely a function of these deceptive marketing campaigns.”

Right problem … facile, glib, and undoubtedly wrong diagnosis.

    4th armored div in reply to tom swift. | July 16, 2017 at 10:03 am

    if people of color keep voting against their own best interests –
    voting in large percentages for the party of KKK – DummyCraps –
    then they cannot complain about false advertising and damage to family done to them.

    I am truly sorry that they suffer from so poor cognitive dissidence that can’t recognize what can help them out of this ‘slave mentality’ to the DNC.

I have the solution:
No more foodstamps.

When Jesse Jackson once saw a Paul Simon appproach him, he said, “Here come’s Rhymin’ Hyman.”

I would target three groups. One, the DEA, Department of Education. The most expensive education system with progressive results is a first-order forcing of catastrophic anthropogenic dietary consumption. Two, the teachers’ union, the teachers are clearly not impressing the dangers of high glucose products consumed while sedentary. Three, the parents, because mom and dad have primary responsibility to ensure their babies don’t grow up to drink Coke.

Actually, four groups. Four, the social justice adventurists, and the lawyers and politicians that make it worth their time, that promote shared responsibility and dreams of instant gratification. This last group is responsible for the proliferation of unhealthy dietary habits and denial of personal agency to regulate individual Choice.

The Friendly Grizzly | July 15, 2017 at 9:00 pm

The suits will never see a courtroom. The soda makers will knuckle under and pay “go away” money, which is all this is about in the first place.

    Ah, yes. The infamous conspiracy to exploit a corporation by threading a narrative through a black hole.

    Yes. We’ve seen how jounolists blow a real and manufactured narrative to liberal proportions. It’s a Pro-Choice thing. Presumed guilty until deemed worthy. Off with her head.

    It is in the best interest of companies to avoid crossing paths with the racketeering-friendly press and plead no contest.

Read “The Case Against Sugar” by Gary Taubes as it may be an element in the foundation for the claim.

I guess they won’t be joining in the song.

Quit allowing junk food and pop to be purchased with Food Stamps.

Make my blood boil to see what is being bought with their debit card, and then watch them pull out cash for cigs and booze.

And that’s just the white fatty-fats I see around here.

These two clowns represent the worst parents in the history of parents in the United States.

They’ll be laughed out of court, but next, they’ll sue Nike. And KFC. And on and on.

Why is it you’re allowed to use food stamps at fast food restaurants? Or ANY restaurant?

    We live in a Pro-Choice society, which is a leading cause of of premie death by a hundred cuts, and catastrophic anthropogenic sugar indulgence, the other white powder.

    That said, they promoted sugar products at my junior high and high school. I wonder if we could make this a class-action lawsuit.

    Headline: Manufacturers of sugary drinks knew decades ago that consumption of their product was linked to elevated blood glucose levels. Call now if you or a loved one experienced high blood glucose levels caused by overindulgence of sugary drinks.

    The social justice warriors can be deployed to Occupy Coke distribution centers and private homes of employees.

Is it too much to ask the judge who hears this case to sit down at his bench, pop open a cold Coca-Cola, take a sip, and ask the plaintifs to begin.

“Your Honor, we would like to–”

‘psst!’ “Ahh. Go ahead.”

Is it me, or do these two morons look like they’re burping from all that Coke?

As I recall, Coke commercials never show anyone drinking more than one. And when Cosby was advertising the execrable New Coke, he didn’t drink any at all.

It might be hard to argue that anyone is advertising the sort of binge pigouts which could lead to health problems.

Whatever happened to the notion of a “nuisance suit?” It’s unbelievable to me that a court would even accept something this ridiculous. Just sayin’.

I read in Advertising Week that the Coca-Cola, “Drink Coke and be an overweight diabetic” campaign didn’t boost sales at all.

I remember being in at a rally where a fat, female black activist was claiming the CIA was committing genocide against black people. While she ranted on about the CIA killing black people, this porko was greedily shoveling greasy pieces of fried chicken into her face, a la michelle obama. This dumbass is probably dead by now of a heart attack, a stroke diabetes or the like. Yup: the CIA killed her!

“Soul Food Is Killing Blacks:”

After interviewing food historians, scholars, cooks, doctors, activists and consumers for his new film “Soul Food Junkies,” filmmaker Byron Hurt concluded that an addiction to soul food is killing African-Americans at an alarming rate.

Just an observation that pretty much everyone knows. In majority black areas, Pepsi products and Pepsi outsell Coca Cola products and Coca Cola. If you remember the New Coke debacle, the only city in the nation where formulated to taste more like Pepsi New Coke sold better then The Real Thing was majority black Detroit.

we’re losing more people to the sweets than to the streets.

I seriously doubt that.

The evil ****s who get off on frightening people can’t seem to help themselves. Not only do they convince people a lot of harmless things will kill them, but when once in a while they find a truly harmful product like cigarettes they can’t just stick to the truth but feel an uncontrollable urge to exaggerate. It’s not enough that smoking kills, it has to kill 400,000 a year in the US alone, which is utter BS. Same here. Sugary drinks are not good for you, and I’m sure they do kill some significant number of people, but nowhere near the numbers these two clowns are claiming.

    You’ve got to admit, he’s got a pretty good catch phrase…

    “We’re losing more people to Sweets than the Streets”!!

    (really rolls off the tongue)

    I agree….exaggeration sells.

    But a lot of people forget, “Moderation is the key”…
    The occasional soft drink is OK….consume nothing but soft drinks…not so good!

    Old0311 in reply to Milhouse. | July 16, 2017 at 9:05 am

    Preaching is just part time work. These men are actually respected climate change scientists whose claims may sound like exaggerations, but in reality they are just white lies to save humanity.

    I’ll take scams for $500, Alex.

    alaskabob in reply to Milhouse. | July 16, 2017 at 11:05 am

    Losing more to Colt 45 malt liquor than Coke…. and 9 mils

    Char Char Binks in reply to Milhouse. | July 17, 2017 at 11:20 am

    They may have a a point. Too much sugar is a leading cause of problems that lead to death for diabetics and other fatties.

This should be immediately thrown out. It matters whether you have standing or not.

Ah…. they took the “real thing” out of Coke in 1911 and except for Mexico, they then took the other “real thing” out of Coke a few years back. Now we are only left with lawsuits go better with Coke.

It should be thrown out as it is predicated on a lie.

You never see an obese person.

In fact SANTA CLAUS is in their ads year after year. The perfect obese pitchman.

The most dangerous thing in the world to be is stupid! There is no work around. Easiest/lazyist way out is to have someone else pay for it. Too many ambulance chasers will sue on speculation.

Funny, I don’t see them calling for food stamp reform to prevent people in poverty stricken areas from purchasing coke and other high sugar beverages. When you have to buy it with your own money, it’s suddenly not a huge priority.

Pepsi is run by leftst acivists. The race bait industry gives them a pass.

NavyMustang | July 16, 2017 at 3:56 am

“Coates said he has seen members of his congregation give their infants bottles filled with sugary drinks…”

Cause it’s got ELECTROLYTES!!!

I disagree with the pastors……everyone knows black people drink orange or grape sodas. Coke is what ” crackers” drink

Is he really saying that “his people” are so stupid they can’t be expected to consider the effects of sugary high calorie soda on their health/weight?

I guess he’s ignoring all the historically black foods which are high in calories, fat, and starch. After all there probably isn’t much money to be won if they sued the grits producers.

Wonder who would scream the loudest if the govt eliminated the purchase of ALL junk food to include soft drinks via EBT cards/food stamps? Most likely we’d, hear whining about how poor people were being denied the right to make their own food choices.

I guess the pastors haven’t seen this real Coke ad:

It will always be that way with these people. They take no responsibility for anything they do. Everything is a conspiracy against them. What a tiresome people.

…. wonder if they’ll use the same tactic (legitimately this time) on Banned Parenthood…

These two pastors would be happier with more young man shot to death. And they seem to be unfamiliar with free will.

These people are not only out of control mooches, they are morons. I’m sure they will get help from the SPLC though.

If these two pastors know how horrible the sugar drink / obesity relationship is, why don’t their parishoners? Why don’t their school systems? How is it that these two pastors are the only ones in the community who know about this? And why have they been keeping it a secret from everyone else?

A money-grab disguised as virtue signaling; nothing more.

pilgrim1949 | July 17, 2017 at 8:55 am

I’ve gained waaaay too much weight over the past 10-15 years and my physical fitness has atrophied mightily.

I think it must be a combination of the excess gravitational pull of the dining room table and chair along with the mind-of-its-own fork that keeps on shoveling food into my face against my will while I’m trapped at the table.

That, plus the incessant commercials featuring groups of laughing, svelte and sexy beautiful people have programmed me into believing that I, too, will be popular and physically fit if I would only consume their products while lounging at the beach or backyard food-fest.

Surely I cannot be blamed for my own gluttony and sloth which has totally undone my formerly extremely-fit, collegiate, athletic-competitive physique.

Please, kind ambulance-chasing legal beagles of the famous Dewey, Cheatum and Howe law firm, there must be someone I can sue for lots of money to assuage the guilt I feel over how far down I’ve slid from my former athletic lifestyle. (However else can I afford to keep buying more of those tasty, high-caloric goodies?)

Two more race hustlers to replace or supplement Jackson the former presidsent’s adviser.

Char Char Binks | July 17, 2017 at 6:59 pm

“The streets” means other black people, I assume.

ultraskeptic | July 22, 2017 at 7:09 am

There are way too many thoughtless racists responding to this article. “Truth in advertising” should elicit peals of laughter from people who think about how advertising works. You use deception, misrepresentation, symbolic suggestion, and a host of other misleading devices to ensure that your victim/consumers are led by subtle unconscious human motivational drives to purchase or vote as you wish. Do you honestly believe that most politicians would get elected if they were direct and honest about their beliefs? Do you honestly believe that most of them have any beliefs at all? do you think that huge consumer products producers and pharmaceutical houses give a rat’s tuchus what happens to the end-user of their product, so long as profits increase? These pastors have a real and justificable cause. Brainwashing occurs all the time, but in advertising it is the raison d’etre. Lying, cheating, stealing. The American way of business and politics.

    gourdhead in reply to ultraskeptic. | July 22, 2017 at 8:11 am

    This is pure and patent bullshit. I could do a pretty accurate profile of you based on these stupid comments.

      ultraskeptic in reply to gourdhead. | July 22, 2017 at 8:55 am

      Gourdhead – I’m sure you could. You’d be wrong, of course, but your accuracy would correspond with your perceptions, and your perceptual ability is summarized by your screen name.