Starbucks Shot o’ Truth

Yesterday I received a FB message from a friend of mine who was at Starbucks during what is normally a packed morning rush.

I’m sitting at one of the busiest Starbucks in Atlanta at the intersection of Mansell Rd and Alpharetta Highway in Roswell. It is EMPTY. It is usually overflowing with people. I asked the barista what is going on and she told me the Starbucks boycott campaign due to agreeing 10K refugees is severely impacting business.’

I looked online and read about other Starbucks that were far emptier than usual.

Where do I go with this?

To the truth.

In an open letter to the company’s employees, CEO Howard Schultz wrote, ‘we are developing plans to hire 10,000 of them over five years in the 75 countries around the world where Starbucks does business.’

It’s true. Starbucks is going to hire refugees in the U.S. and 74 other countries around the world.  The announcement ignited a firestorm, and #BoycottStarbucks began trending, with people accusing Starbucks of hiring refugees instead of American veterans.

Except that’s not true.  Starbucks announced a few years ago it would hire 10,000 veterans by 2018.  As of this week, Starbucks says it has hired ‘8,800 veterans and military spouses.’

Starbucks is also opening stores in low income areas, including Ferguson, Missouri, and says it has already met its goal of hiring 10,000 16 to 24 year olds who are unemployed and not in school.

So, to recap — refugees and veterans and spouses of veterans and low income and unemployed young adults.

You can disagree with the company’s plan to hire refugees.

You cannot claim it’s instead of everyone else.

Truth means transparency, so I will also point out that Howard Schultz supported Hillary Clinton. He is not happy with the executive order. ‘We are living in an unprecedented time, one in which we are witness to the conscience of our country, and the promise of the American Dream, being called into question.’

I’m not advocating to #DrinkStarbucks. Drink whatever coffee you please, even the rot gut that sits out all night at roadside gas stations, if it makes you happy.

I’m saying beware of selective truth. Guess what sentence immediately followed the announcement of refugee hirings?  ‘And we will start this effort here in the U.S. by making the initial focus of our hiring efforts on those individuals who have served with U.S. troops as interpreters and support personnel in the various countries where our military has asked for such support.’   

Keep reading, my brothers and sisters. Keep reading beyond the headline. Beyond the tweet. Beyond the hashtag.

If you want to find me, I’ll be at my neighborhood Starbucks enjoying a tall flat white.



  ‘We are in business to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time – whether that neighborhood is in a Red State or a Blue State; a Christian country or a Muslim country; a divided nation or a united nation. That will not change.  You have my word on that.’ — Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz
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20 comments on “Starbucks Shot o’ Truth
  1. Charles McComb says:

    Good for you Jaye. I’m so enjoying your insight and stories. I pray nothing but the best for your future. Keep us informed. God Blesd

  2. Pat Aaronson says:

    As always, so beautifully written. It is sad that people stop at the headline and won’t read further. I have been guilty of that at times, but I won’t render an opinion until I go back and read everything.
    As a fellow Catholic, did you see that 550+ people peacefully protested Sunday afternoon outside the White House by celebrating mass? What a beautiful and powerful way to speak out!

    • Denise says:

      Thank you for pointing out the part that came after Starbucks plans on hiring 10,000 refugees. But I just want to say it works both ways. The headlines that the left are putting out are just as controversial and dividing as the right. Both sides are guilty of not looking past the headline. I make sure I read the article to try to decipher the truth from the headline

      • Jaye Watson says:

        Denise, I agree this is a two way street. I get my news from journalists I know are principled and driven by a search for facts, not supposition or hysteria. There are so many amazing journalists working very hard right now to be fair and faithful to their chosen profession. Thanks for reading.

        • Pat Johnson says:

          I,personally, have researched which publications publish factual information and opposed to those who just sensationalize. I also fact check articles before responding if at all possible. Glad there are honest, responsible journalist still working for the good of our country.

    • PHIL CORTE says:


  3. LLD says:

    Thanks Jaye.

    A great reminder!

  4. Jack Watts says:

    Starbucks is very political and way left of center, but it’s a business. I’m right of center, but I like their coffee. I’m criticized for not boycotting, but I want to make my own choices about these things.

    • Jaye Watson says:

      If I only bought products from companies whose beliefs mirror my own, I’d miss out on a lot of wonderful things. I agree, Jack. We can disagree, without being destructive.

  5. Jim Grey says:

    I am really struggling to cut through the nonsense and find the whole, plain story. On anything related to the new administration. It’s making me want to give up on news outlets. But they’re all we have. I feel stuck.

    I don’t think the stalwart mainstream outlets are deliberately lying to us. I just think there’s some combination of reporting not going deep enough and framing stories for maximum clickage for their target audiences. Or something.

  6. Cecelia Burrows says:

    This is exactly our problem – very few read the WHOLE story, and focus only on those segments that they choose.
    And that is the sad Truth!

  7. Joe Webber says:

    Hi Jaye-
    Thanks for the post.
    As one of your threads mentioned earlier, this is a two way street.
    For every single negative Starbucks article, there are 10 negative Trump articles.
    My fb newsfeed is littered with untruths from elimination of the EPA to religious liberty.
    The media is not accurately reporting the news.
    I have always been an independent, and I believe everyone should be treated fairly.
    One of the biggest controversies I can point to is the media claiming Trump mocked a disabled reporter.
    There is video proof that he did not, yet 95% of the general public think he did.
    So yes. Transparency and truth for ALL MEDIA

    • Jaye Watson says:

      Thanks for weighing in, Joe. I agree misinformation abounds these days. So I get my news from journalists I know adhere to truth and principled reporting. Thank you for reading.

      • Denise says:

        Joe I totally agree with you! And Jaye can you maybe in another post talk about the journalists that you feel are fair so we too can find the truth In this sea of journalistic lies

  8. Judi Short says:

    Thank you so much Jaye. As a high school librarian I struggled daily to give my students just the kind of critical thinking skills you are talking about. Now that I’m retired, I find it more difficult to convince my friends & neighbors to do the same. It was easier to open student

  9. Jean Gailey says:

    I knew that already. I don’t boycott, but I don’t buy there either. I prefer Dunkin Donuts and Mickey d’s coffee for me. Tastes better.

  10. Bert says:

    Well said. This hashtag world we are living in is so quick to pass judgment. See you at Starbucks!

  11. Tina says:

    Thank you for a wonderfully written essay addressing the Starbucks situation, which for me ultimately represents many occurances of attention grabbing headlines that people take as fact and form their opinions from. During this election this has become rampant and my 15 & 18 year old kids- and my husband, fall for it. As a result I find my self Always researching and double checking facts to present to them the entire stories, sometimes supporting my views and sometimes defending my views. It is crazy to me with all the resources at our fingertips that the majority of people are not interested in researching as opposed to blindly believing. Although I will admit, almost daily I find myself having to do this, and teenagers especially do not have the inclination to make that a priority. I am forwarding your essay to my family to read 😉

  12. Gail Sanders Walrath says:

    I don’t drink coffee! My mother told my siblings and me that “coffee would stunt our growth.” She declared the age of 18 as a proper time to indulge in coffee-drinking. By that time I had reached official adulthood, I had an aversion to the taste of coffee, although I love to smell it in the package.

    We reap what we sow. As a Reality Therapist, I hold Starbucks responsible for any political backlash that comes their way since they themselves set the tone for controversy. They have the right to free speech, but it comes with a cost. I believe buinessess should service their customers, not expound beliefs that at leasr one half of their customers find offensive.

    As far as going to the source for real news, I do want folks to know The Trump Train is an alias for an individual on Twitter. He does not represent the voice or thoughts of President Trump. The Trump Train follows me on Twitter, and I follow back. There are, to my knowledge, four Trump Train profiles on Twitter. When they post, I read with a cautioned interest and not for the absolute facts.

    Sadly people’s raw emotions have seeped into the 2016 election like none we have ever seen, and most folks (even the best of us) get caught up in partial truths – to the point we lose the ability to see a bigger picture. The good news is time is on our sides. Be patient for we all have suffered heavier things.

  13. Kathleen Bard says:

    I support Star Bucks and Howard Shultz for standing up to a evil man who is ruining the USA in just over a week in office.Shame full individual who is a puppet for Bannon evict and impeach them all .We shall prevail.

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