Whole Foods-CEO John Mackey Announced his Loyalty to his friend, Accused Child Sexual Abuser and former rabbi, Marc Gafni
This story is not over. It will never be over for victims and survivors. For Whole Foods Market, CEO John Mackey who announced his loyalty to his friend and still stands behind him today. With all the accounts that have come out about Marc Gafni, the former rabbi and spiritual teacher, you may wonder what more can be said.
I agree with Vice President Joe Biden’s speech at the United States Women Summit In Washington, D.C. regarding the culture of silence surrounding sexual assault, violence, child sexual abuse. Mr. Biden said, “men who stay quiet about rape culture and sexual assaults are accomplices.” It goes to my favorite quote, “Evil prevails when good men do nothing—“Edmund Burke.
Not only did Whole Foods CEO John Mackey “do nothing”, but in fact, announced his loyalty to his friend, former rabbit Marc Gafni.
Mr. Gafni, according to The New York Times was accused of sexually exploiting a high school freshman and who then Gafni moved to Israel to start a mystical community, only to lose it after having affairs with multiple followers.
On his Whole Foods Market blog, Mackey’s only statement says his affiliation with Gafni is “strictly a personal relationship,” and then provides a link to a 7-part video dialogue with Gafni. Whole Foods then tweeted much of the same message. A Whole Foods spokesperson said Mackey is no longer on Gafni’s board nor involved with CIW, and “there’s nothing else to say.
Whole Foods Market Mackey removed the 7 part video from the Whole Foods website. That’s it! A little too little and a little too late.
Mr. Gafni was quoted as saying that he and a 14-year-old child were “in love” and that “he never forced her.
“It’s not love, Mr. Mackey and Mr. Gafni. A 14-year-old child is incapable of the type of “love” you describe. Let’s call it what it is. Child sexual abuse, sexual assault, violence against a minor, statutory rape. Sexual interaction between an adult male and a 14-year-old child is child sexual abuse. It is not and can never be labeled as LOVE.
A 14-year-old child lacks the emotional maturity to stave off the grooming process that sexual predators use to ensnare their victims.
In my work with survivors of child sexual assault, perpetrators who are pedophiles, uniformly speak of their deep “love relationship” with their child victims.
Love suggests an interaction between two consenting adults with the wisdom and maturity to engage in an equal and loving adult sexual and emotional relationship. Only pedophiles call an unequal sexual interaction between a child and an adult, “love” as a way to justify child sexual abuse to themselves and others. Mr. Mackey apparently fell for it or didn’t want to see the truth. Either way, Mr. Biden is right. All of those who support the culture of rape, who protect abusers, who remain silent, are accomplices. Mr. Mackey, by his support and lack of inaction on behalf of survivors, is an “accomplice.”
As a survivor of child sexual abuse and spokesperson for victims, we challenge Whole Foods to donate a percentage of all their sales to non-profit organizations that protect children and help survivors recover from the tattoo of sexual assault–the handprint that can never be removed, only healed and respected.
Will you continue to shop at Whole Foods Market? Can their food really be “Whole” if their commander-in chief, fails to support the “broken” victims and stands by the “unhealthy.