A US judge has mandated that McDonald’s Corp. defend itself in the $10 billion racism lawsuit filed by media mogul Byron Allen, who claims that the fast-food business engaged in “racial stereotyping” by refusing to advertise in black-owned media.
According to a ruling made on Friday by US district judge Fernando Olguin in Los Angeles, Allen may attempt to show in the racism lawsuit that McDonald’s broke federal and California civil rights laws by excluding his networks from receiving the “vast bulk” of its advertising funds.
In this racism lawsuit, Allen claimed that McDonald’s denied his Entertainment Studios Networks Inc. and Weather Group LLC, which owns the Weather Channel, tens of millions of dollars in annual income by placing them in an “African American tier” with a different advertising agency and a considerably lesser advertising budget.
Olguin referenced claims that Entertainment Studios had made many fruitless attempts since its creation in 2009 to get a contract with McDonald’s, whose “racist” corporate culture damaged Allen, without making a determination about the truth of the allegations.
Olguin stated, “Plaintiffs have asserted sufficient circumstances to warrant an inference of purposeful discrimination when taken together and viewed in the light most favorable to Plaintiffs.
McDonald’s lawyer Loretta Lynch said in a statement yesterday that the Chicago-based corporation felt the evidence would demonstrate there was no prejudice and that the case was “about money, not race.”
According to her, “Plaintiffs’ baseless charges overlook both McDonald’s reasonable economic justifications for not investing more on their channels and the company’s long-standing commercial partnerships with many other diverse-owned partners.”
The issue, according to Allen, is “about the economic participation of African American-owned enterprises in the US economy,” according to a statement.
“McDonald’s robs African American customers of billions while providing nearly little in return.”
According to the complaint, 40% of fast food patrons are black, yet McDonald’s only allocated 0.3% of their $1.6 billion US marketing budget to black-owned media in 2019.
McDonald’s said in May 2021 that it will increase national ad expenditure with black-owned media to 5% from 2% by 2024.
Olguin rejected a previous iteration of Allen’s claim last November after concluding that there was no evidence of deliberate and intentional prejudice against his enterprises.