Jeremiah Johnson, one of the owners of Stylent, a sports brand in Des Moines, Iowa, confronted the landlord on the matter to which he had no valid excuse.
The recorded video of the confrontation between the two men has gone viral after being watched for over 2.8 million times.
Johnson’s business lease was supposed to end in August this year but has been cut short after he joined in the BLM protests.
“I will just tell you flat out if there’s something illegal going on at a place that I’m at, I don’t want to be a part of it. I’m personally going to leave,” the landlord said to Johnson.
The landlord added he did not want his own business to decrease in value by people seeing Johnson and his partners on the news protesting.
Talking about the incident, Johnson strongly believes that the decision was racially motivated.
“If I was a white kid protesting on the news yelling “we need haircuts now”, he probably will think that’s okay,” Johnson said.
“We had an incident previously with him (the landlord) because he assumed we were coming to our office not following the COVID-19 guideline when we clearly have a Stylent COVID-19 guideline in our office that everyone uses when they come in.”
Johnson continued: “He told us not to come to the office until the virus slows down but he still wanted us to pay rent, light bill, and internet bill while we weren’t allowed to come in the office to work. Which was crazy because how are we supposed to pay you when we aren’t allowed to come in and work.”
“He always had problems with us bringing investors and models in to look at our new office space. He was just sneakily bullying us. We rented the spot from him but we felt like he was limiting us to a lot.”
After having his business lease ended abruptly, Johnson is now seeking legal action.
“We put a lot of money and time into our brand to just watch it fall because of someone that thinks his business value will decrease because I’m practicing my first amendment right.”