CrossFit CEO Greg Glassman announced Tuesday that he is stepping down after more insensitive comments he made about George Floyd emerged.
In a Zoom conference with CrossFit affiliates Saturday obtained by BuzzFeed, Glassman was asked why the company hadn’t made a statement on the anti-police brutality protests over the police killing of Floyd.
“Can you tell me why I should mourn for him? Other than that it’s the white thing to do — other than that, give me another reason,” Glassman answered, according to the outlet. “We’re not mourning for George Floyd — I don’t think me or any of my staff are.” Glassman also questioned systemic racism and the motives of protesters, BuzzFeed wrote.
“On Saturday I created a rift in the CrossFit community and unintentionally hurt many of its members,” Glassman said in a statement announcing his retirement. “I cannot let my behaviour stand in the way of HQ’s or affiliates’ missions. They are too important to jeopardise.”
The conference call happened before Glassman joked on Twitter about the coronavirus pandemic and the police killing of Floyd. In response to an Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation tweet calling racism a public health issue, Glassman tweeted back: “It’s Floyd-19.”
In response, Reebok, which is owned by Adidas, announced it would sever ties with CrossFit. Several gyms also said they were ditching their affiliation with the workout brand.
Glassman apologised, but it was too late. The company, in a long-winded statement Tuesday, said the founder’s comments were “incredibly insensitive and hurtful.”
Dave Castro is taking over as CEO, the company said.