Woman apologizes after "Karen"-like confrontation with homeowner
The CEO of a San Francisco-based skin care company apologized on Sunday for calling the police of a man who posted a chalk sign reading Black Lives Matter outside his own home in the posh Pacific Heights neighborhood, CBS San Francisco reports. A video of Tuesday's confrontation between Lisa Alexander and James Juanillo, who is Filipino, was shared by millions on social media, causing a wave of outrage.
A white couple calls the police, a colored person, because they put a # BLM chalk message on my own front retaining wall. "Karen" lies and says that she knows that I don't live in my own house because she knows the person who lives here. #blacklivesmatter pic.twitter.com/rOpHvKVwgP
- Jaimetoons (@jaimetoons) June 12, 2020
Alexander's company LaFace Skincare has taken their website offline.
After several attempts by CBS San Francisco to get a comment from Alexander, she sent a statement to the broadcaster on Sunday.
"I would like to apologize directly to Mr. Juanillo. There are not enough words to describe how sorry I was that I was disrespectful to him last Tuesday when I decided to ask him what he was doing in front of his house did." She wrote. "I should have taken care of my own affairs. The past 48 hours have taught me that my actions have been those of someone who is not aware of the harm caused by ignorance and naivety about racial differences."
"When I watch the video, I am shocked and sad that I acted that way," she continued. "It was disrespectful to Mr. Juanillo and I'm deeply sorry. I didn't know then that my actions were racist and I learned a painful lesson. I look closely at the importance of white privilege and am determined to grow out of this experience. "
Juanillo said he was open to sitting down with Alexander, an offer she seemed to take on Sunday.
"I would like to have coffee with Mr. Juanillo in our neighborhood so that I can apologize personally and have a dialogue in which I can continue to learn and grow and be a better person."
Juanillo stenciled "Black Lives Matter" on chalk in front of his house on Tuesday when he was confronted by Alexander and her companion, who eventually called the police.
"She (Alexander) decided to call men with chalk for chalk art," said Juanillo, who has lived in Pacific Heights for 18 years and runs a dog shop.
In the video posted on Juanillo's Facebook and Twitter account with the username @jaimetoons, the couple can be heard saying, "Is this your property?"
"We don't do anything illegal," says the couple.
"Neither do I," says Juanillo.
"Yes, you actually are because it's private property," says the couple.
"Call the police," Juanillo says defiantly.
"We will do that," says the couple.
Juanillo told CBS San Francisco that he knew many of the neighborhood police and said they hadn't even got out of their car when they checked out the call shortly after the video was recorded.
He said he was a proud gay Filipino who knew what discrimination felt like.
"It is not the first time that I am afraid or even loathe that it is sneaking out somehow," said Juanillo.
Birchbox, a makeup distribution service, has posted a statement on its Instagram account that says "the connection to LaFace is officially cut and Lisa Alexander's actions are condemned".
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