Tipsy Cake Owner Naomi Levine Issues Apology

After community activists and businesses called for a boycott, Tipsy Cake owner Naomi Levine issues apology.

Dear Fans

I would like to sincerely apologize to the Humboldt Park Community for my insensitive comments made in the City Soles interview that was posted on our Facebook page on February 21st

With respect to the specific comments that I made; first, “bullets in cake.” I viewed several comments accusing me of racism. I truthfully did not make the connection between my comments and being a racist, so I thought it best to immediately respond to such comments with how my business is minority owned and employs men and women from all ethnic backgrounds. I feel that the best comment to describe my ignorance came from Mr. Xavier Luis Burgos’ article on gozamos.com. In that article, Xavier wrote that:

“Some disregarded this “slip of the lip” as misguided, ironically tasteless, or even unintentional. But for many, this is impossible if one is mindful of the greater historical, social, and economic paradigms that informs such comments. Levine, like anyone on this Earth, exists not in a vacuum. “

At the time I made my comments, I truly failed to take into consideration any historical, social, economic or political implications of my words. As an Australian immigrant that settled in Humboldt Park in 2006, I now realize that I spent all my time focusing solely on growing my business and my family, and, like many in society, I never took any time to develop a real understanding of the very community and the history of the people that I have had the fortune of living among for the past 6 years. In other words, I in fact lived “in a vacuum.”

Second, my comment about “Humboldt crack.” I do apologize for this comment. However, I also feel that the people I offended with this comment deserve an explanation as to why I originally thought it would be taken as humorous and not offensive. As the owner of a bakery, I am privy to a lot of slang from customers. Nearly everyday since I opened the doors to my bakery, at least one customer would sample a product and tell me how it was “like crack.” Moreover, I noticed that men, women and children of all ages and ethnic backgrounds made this comment. This equated to 6 years of people telling me that my products were “like crack.” My only thought over all of these years, and during my comments in the interview, was that people could use that slang as a compliment to say that my food was addicting and that it was okay for me to do so as well. With respect to inserting the word “Humboldt” in front, I would have to apologize and accept 100% blame. What I thought was a “cool” play on words never crossed my mind as having implications to the presence of illegal drugs in Humboldt Park.

Finally, where I hope this message and my apology is received by all of those that were offended from my comments, I also hope it is received and acknowledged by the few callers that have made threats of violence. While I do not expect that every single person that was offended will accept my apology, I would like everyone to know that your comments on social media were received and educated me as to the mistakes I have made, which guided me to issue this apology.

Sincerely,

Naomi Levine
Tipsycake

ORIGINAL INTERVIEW

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6 Comments Add yours

  1. C.Dean says:

    In my opinion Naomi didn’t say anything wrong. As I have been posting since finding out about this. This is typical misguidance of priorities. People have made this protest against someone, in a light manner, stating some of the obvious problems. The problems that infect Humboldt Park. HOW ABOUT THE PEOPLE THAT HAVE A PROBLEM WITH THIS BOYCOTTING THE PEOPLE THAT ARE SHOOTING INSTEAD OF SOMEONE THAT IS COMMENTING ON IT. A woman was shot and killed at a subway restaurant blocks away from this protest however no one is protesting that. Why? Everyday some crime is happening on some block in HP but do people band together and protest letting the perpetrators know that they are not having it anymore? No. People are calling this woman racist when NOT A SINGLE RACIAL COMMENT WAS STATED. This is being done because it is easy. It is easy to take on this woman because there is no courage to take on the people that are actually committing the crime. That is someone elses job to do. This false flag of community pride is a facade. If these protestors were really that proud of their neighborhood they would take the initiative to get the crime off the streets that they are so proud of. Turn these fools in. Raise your kids to not partake in this activity. Protest on your block and any other blocks as soon as the smallest of crimes happen. Let crime know it has no place here anymore. Dont be cowards and try to blame this woman for speaking her mind. Speak your mind, tell the perpetrators their time is up. Stop taking the easy route and blaming someone that has nothing to do with what is going on, the core problem. This only serves as a distraction to what the problem really is…the idiots that are committing the crime.

    By the way…I grew up in Roseland and West Pullman and live in Humboldt. This isnt someone commenting from the outside looking in…I’m here and have been for 14 years.

  2. Truth says:

    Everyday some crime is happening on some block in HP …well, since you’ve lived there for 14 years, I’m sure you’ve had a million opportunities to let the perpetrators know that you’re not having it anymore! Don’t be a coward and try to blame the protestors for speaking their minds.

    I don’t even have the energy to respond to this with anything but sarcasm.

    #youmissedthepoint

  3. Lyrikal says:

    @ C.Dean. You need to look deeper our community struggles to deal with these problem all the time!!!! You should ask yourself what your doing to help solve some of these problems!!

  4. HP Latina says:

    @ C.Sean if you have lived here for 14 years you would know that we have programs in our community to help prevent people committing crimes in the future. Can you name any of those programs? I can, BACCA, BATEY URBANO, VIDA/SIDA, AND THIS LIST GOES ON. We are not saying that there are no problems in Humboldt Park, but we ARE trying to change them! You have lived here 14 years, well i have been here 21 years and have seen the transformation that has happened in Humboldt Park. My point, as well as the protesters, is why do people insist on looking at the negativity in Humboldt Park? Why can’t you see the Positive things happening in the area? The product that was being sold, it was sold in WHOLE FOODS. Do you see a Whole Foods anywhere near Humboldt Park, No! so how do you think the people shopping outside of the community will think when they pick up a product called “Humboldt Crack” That is not the image we are trying to build in this community. I am Proud to say that I was there for that Conference against Tipsy Cake, and a Proud Puerto Rican whose voice will be heard when incidences like this happen!

  5. C.Dean says:

    What does any of these comments have to do with mobilizing on your block and when these kids are acting out going door to door and letting people know this happened on this date at this time as well as this and this. Saturday on this block we want to get everyone on the block out on the block resisting this and letting the perpetrators know that we arent going for this.Mobalize that.

    As far as me being accused of being a coward, I call these kids out, tell em that this isnt welcome, call the cops, notify my neighbors if something is going on, report things to my alderman, host events in the neighborhood, gotten into confrontations because Im tired of this nonsense. Many things. If that is the act of a coward I will be a coward all day long. Ask yourself if you do that. Instead of talking to the people that see what you see talk to the people that dont see it. Make your presence known to the people that dont see it.

    How is protesting this business that isnt committing crime stopping the next person from getting shot, robbed, raped or assaulted? Where was this protest where it needed to be…outside of Subway last week? spread the Truth because #youmissedthepoint. We’ll see how sacrastic you are when we have to bury another one of our babies, our mothers, our fathers. Focus the attention on the problem, if not you only add to the problem.

    Im watching the news now where a mother 4 months later is offering $5000 for information on who killed her son. Someone knows. You have to offer money to get a mother some peace? Its garbage. That block knows who killed her son, someone knows. Open your mouth and speak on it. Stand on the block and dont accept it. Thats power.

    Naming programs…congrats. Anyone can take 5 minutes on google and list organizations. Stop waiting on the organizations to do it. Organize your block yourself! Go door to door. Stand on your block. Stop making excuses. People do need to look at the negativity in HP. That is the way the problem gets addressed. If people dont know the problem how can they address it? If people dont know the issues of the negative they cant create a positive. They cant foster the existing positive.

    What does a business selling to another business have to do with kids dieing? Who cares if Whole Foods isnt in HP? What does that have to do with ANYTHING? Thats like saying if a gas station is in HP you can only drive your car in HP because thats where you bought the gas or that you have to prove that you live here in order to buy gas here. So if a business opens its only supposed to serve a 5 block radius? Anyone that has a problem with a business that you think doesnt do for the community stop complaining and start a business that does. Gather people together that have the funds to start such a business. There have been plenty of SBA opportunities for people, especially over the past decade for latinos, to open businesses. Dont complain and just do. I remember back when I was out south so many people would complain about races not in the neighborhood opening businesses when money was purposely set aside for people in these neighborhoods to start businesses. Not many took advantage however there is scrutiny against others that took advantage. Why? Better yet, why complain if you are not willing to do.

    As far as the Humboldt crack thing is concerned, if you listen to the interview it is the police that named it that. She ran with it. Granted it may have been the wrong name for the product as well as insensitive however how many people are going to go up to the next cop they see, ask them if they go to the spot and tell them to stop calling it Humboldt crack and that you find it insulting that someone that is here to protect and serve all of us would think so little of the people they are here to protect that they would refer to something in this community as crack.

    It is really easy to stand in front of cameras and manufacture a problem, I would like to see the people that has so much heart stand in front of the guy with the gun and tell him why he should put it down. But the again…thats someone elses job, right?!?

  6. Lucy says:

    Wepa!! more power to the people in hp….

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