By: Brittney O.
Hip-HopVibe.com Entertainment Editor
Greg Glassman, CrossFit Gym’s CEO and founder, led a Zoom meeting call with thousands of other CrossFit gym owners across the country, as the meeting that many looked forward to, went downhill fast. The call was held hours before Glassman responded to a tweet on Saturday night that called racism a public health issue, writing “It’s FLOYD-19” which drew immediate backlash and cost the company their partnership with Reebok. The deal would include an exclusive 10-year deal with Reebok being the primary sponsor and licensee of CrossFit apparel. The 75-minute Zoom call, according to Buzzfeed whom obtained a live recording through an inside source, was between several affiliates and staff members.
A few of them listened in shock as Glassman constantly expressed doubts about whether systemic racism existed and questioned the motives of protests around the country. The owner made this statement about protesters and CrossFitters that awaited the company to speak out:
“I doubt very much that they’re mourning for Floyd. I don’t think that there’s a general mourning for Floyd in any community.”
The middle-aged Caucasian man then went on to share several conspiracy theories, complained about looting and buildings that had been set on fire, and he questioned the legitimacy of the protest movement that has gripped the nation since George Floyd was murdered. He went on to tell the other owners on the call that:
“..killing George was wrong… burning the town down was wrong, killing the Black cop was wrong, and the Black-on-Black murder every weekend in every one of our cities is a tragedy.”
As the lengthy conversation continued Glassman can be heard discussing coronavirus as he shared more unfounded theories, seemingly convinced that the virus was let out in a Chinese laboratory. One of the North Carolina owners on the call, who had been with the franchise for more than a decade and was actually looking forward to speaking with the Founder, opened up to Buzzfeed reporters as he described the call as “batshit crazy” and “jaw dropping.”
“It was beyond awkward. The way I would describe it, I was privy to information from a private conversation that the world should know about. This guy has a couple thousand of these CrossFit affiliates, and he’s the figurehead, and he’s speaking like a lunatic at a time when things like COVID-19 and George Floyd, Black Lives Matter, are basically already causing unrest. And the things he’s saying are unsubstantiated conspiracy theories — inflammatory nonsense, really.”
The company later released a statement from CrossFit Headquarters, admitting that the company had disappointed CrossFitters and asked for forgiveness as they “thoroughly examine ourselves.” Meanwhile, Greg Glassman stepped down as he stated thta he “unintentionally hurt many of its members.” Since all of the drama that stirred, several of the franchise gym owners have now ended their affiliation with CrossFit.