Anti-police?! Glenn tells critics of 'The Root: Excessive Force' the truth about Thursday's special

On Thursday, Glenn will premiere the latest episode of 'The Root', entitled 'Excessive Force'. Many have seen the short previews and, for some reason, assume Glenn has gone anti-police. Anyone who has watched the show knows this could not be further from the truth. 'The Root' will delve into the militarization of the police, but it will not be anti-police by any means. On his TV show Wednesday, Glenn responded to critics and explained exactly what the core issues are that 'The Root' will address.

Below is a transcript of this segment:

Tomorrow night is the latest episode of The Root. It is called “Excessive Force,” and we’re going to talk tomorrow about this time period from the early 1900s really until today, and we’re going to show you excessive force with the police and why it is happening.

I want you to understand, the reason why I’m doing this show tomorrow is because of these people and the administration, what these people are doing to try to make the bottom rise up, make the police look totally incompetent so the top comes down so we beg the Justice Department and the FBI, “Somebody’s got to do something.” The top comes down, and we’re done. This is really important that you understand this history.

Now, we put a promo together, and some people are already very angry with me, calling me anti-police and just about every other name in the book. The title of the program is provocative, but excessive force is not meant in the way the typical liberal anti-cop person means. I am by no means anti-cop, never have been, never will be. This episode does not bash the actions of individual police officers in any way.

Tomorrow’s program is to challenge the direction the local police is heading. I want to show you this promo that already is causing so much controversy with our audience. Watch.

VIDEO

Glenn: Local police now have the capacity to turn cities both big and small into a war zone, patrolling streets in tanks and armored personnel carriers and geared up with the same fatigues and weapons you’d see on a soldier. Rare cases, such force is warranted, but it is becoming the norm rather than the exception.

You’re going to meet some of the guys that have been doing research on this program for the last couple of months, and I want to remind you that this program has been one of the only programs that has uncovered what the Chicago police are doing, which is a warehouse in the midst of Chicago, and they are using it as almost like a CIA or Guantánamo Bay interrogation room. It goes against everything in the Constitution.

We’re talking about a complete military takeover or military style takeover of our police department for no good reasons. If they’re outgunned, I want them to have the guns. I want them to have the things that they need. I’m a guy who’s on the border patrol, arm the border patrol, arm them. Let them use their guns. I get it.

Most rational people will not argue that the police have overused or have begun to overuse the militaristic option. I have a place that we stay in the summers, and it’s a town of maybe 5,000 people. It has an MRAP. Why does this little teeny town need an MRAP? Now, there are some indisputable facts. SWAT raids have now ballooned out of control. There are 80,000 SWAT raids, and here’s the problem, if you’re going to take down a violent gang, I want the SWAT there, but most of these 80,000 kicking down the doors and using flash bang grenades are conducted on not violent but nonviolent criminals, many of them misdemeanor criminals.

This is not the fault of the officer. I believe honestly it is the fault of the city pressuring people to use these things because they paid for them. I explicitly state in The Root tomorrow night, and I’ll say it right now, officers cannot be blamed for doing the job they’re asked to do as long as it is within the lines of the Constitution. If you’re going to break the Constitution, you’re just hey, I was doing what I was told, well, so were the people that were putting the bodies into the incinerator in Germany. That’s no excuse. But as long as you’re following Constitution and you’re doing the job you’re supposed to do and you’re fighting for your life, I’m with you.

I argue and state in The Root that because of these policies, I believe our officers are actually being put at a greater risk for injury and harm. As these things spiral out of control, they want the SWAT teams. They want the military on the ground. They want all of these things so the average person looks at them as a victim, and we’ve got a war going on.

I will tell you, we never needed it in the United States before. We needed it in the 1960s. It is not a mistake. It is by design that these things are happening again. So, we have to think strategically, and somebody with $300 worth of pot and no criminal history and the weapons, for them to have their door knocked down by a SWAT team in the middle of the night—let me ask you this. We have a story. I think it’s in The Root. It may have been on the editing room floor, so if you see it tomorrow, pretend you didn’t hear it before.

There’s a story of a guy, he was a mayor of a town. They were going in to get a typical raid on somebody who had like $300 of pot next door to the mayor’s house. Well, the SWAT team got the house wrong, and they actually broke down the door of the mayor’s house, flash bang grenades, put everybody down on the floor. The mayor himself said had I had a gun, I would have drawn that gun because I’m a law-abiding citizen. I would’ve drawn that gun, and I could have fired at one of those police officers because you think you’re being attacked.

If you have guns in your house and you’re a law-abiding citizen, to have somebody break into your house, your natural reaction is to draw and shoot. You’re being invaded. He said if I would’ve done that, I would’ve been dead. That’s the mayor of a town. This exact scenario is happening over and over and more and more frequently. Eighty thousand SWAT teams were unleashed in the last year. That is a whole new territory.

The policy is what we’re challenging, not the police officers. This is a program, not a condemnation of officers. I want to take some time and just respond to some of the letters, some of the comments that are up here on Facebook that are truly remarkable. I’m just going to answer a few of them that are the common complaints.

This one comes in from Daniel. “Should they be wearing ball caps and tennis shorts? You equip with the best available to protect yourself.” Daniel, please, don’t be insulting. Of course, officers should be appropriately protected.

I was just at a movie theater last Friday. I go into the movie theater, and here’s this woman cop. She’s standing by the popcorn counter. Now, she’s working at a movie counter in a suburb of Dallas, okay? I walk up to her, I thank her, and I put my hand on her back, as I do it every single cop I ever see. If I feel a vest, I say, “Thank you and thank you for being safe.”

She wasn’t wearing one. I tapped her on her back, and I said, “The world is changing rapidly. Please, don’t go out without a vest.” Of course, we address this. Of course we have them dress appropriately. But why the camouflage? Why the military look? Most of the 40,000 raids conducted are nonviolent drug offenders. Listen to that, 40,000, 80,000, I think in the last year, estimated 40,000 in the last few years, and most of them nonviolent drug offenders. Because of the increased frequency, there are increased mistakes, often with tragic consequences.

We on this program told you the story of the flash bang that went into a house, and there was a baby in the room. The baby suffered severe burns from it. This is going to happen. The more we do these things, the worse it’s going to be for the officer and the citizen. Some officers have been shot because the person being raided in the middle of the night has no idea what’s going on. They think they’re being robbed by a gang. They shoot.

The overuse of the military heavy weaponry is what I have a problem with. As I said, in my small town of 5,000 people, there may not even be 5,000 people in that town, they have an MRAP. Ask why do you have an MRAP? Well, sometimes we have to serve a warrant. Does the mob live here? Do you have biker gangs that live here? Did you have a big shootout with somebody? No, unnecessary.

Peter writes, “We dress so we come home!” I know that. “Believe it or not criminals have stronger weapons than police. Police equip to survive. Take your anti police views to CNN.” Okay, I’ve never had anti-police views, ever. When the subject of a raid is known to have heavy weaponry or suspected to, has a violent history, I am all for taking the SWAT team and go armed to the teeth. The problem is, Peter, the situation you describe is not what is actually happening the majority of the time.

We can talk about feelings. I’d much rather talk about facts. Most of the SWAT raids conducted now are for standard drug warrants involving misdemeanor-level criminals who have no violent history. All officers risk their lives every single day. Every day they suit up and put a badge on, they’re risking their life. I know that.

So, why is it then they don’t wear the military gear all the time? Wouldn’t that give them the best chance to survive? Of course it would. Why don’t we do it? Because we know being policed by a military force rather than a partner in our community is what creates distance between us. Do you think CAIR, International Answer, MoveOn, Color of Change, Code Pink, Open Society, you think it helps to have everybody suited up like a military and MRAPs running through our streets all the time? Do you think that’s helping their case or helping your case? I guarantee it’s helping them say the police are out of control, and they’re going to get you.

You have people in this country who have always respected the flag, always respected the law, have lived their life, their entire life, being the kind of people that always—I’m one of them—always goes up to the policemen, even in New York City, and shakes their hand and say, “Thank you. I know what you’re dealing with. Sometimes I probably don’t, but thank you for doing what you’re doing. I appreciate it, and so does my family.” I always do that.

Even I and people like me all across the country are starting to have doubts. Why? Because the government is arming the military. You have to look at optics as well. Paul writes, “Shame on you Glenn and during National Law Enforcement Memorial Week to boot. Here’s a Novel idea…walk a mile in their shoes. I challenge you sir…go spend some time and some of these crime ridden cities on the streets with the Officers.”

No, thank you. No, thank you. I don’t know what you go through, but I can guess. I’ve driven through many times going to work at a soup kitchen in Bridgeport, Connecticut. I know exactly what a hell hole that is. No, thank you. “I know without a shadow of a doubt you’ll walk away with a deeper understanding and a [sic] abiding respect for our brothers and sisters in Law Enforcement!” I already have that, Paul. I have the deepest respect, and I honor the men and women in law enforcement. I always have. I always give them the benefit of the doubt time and time again.

Have you heard me condemn the police officers in either Missouri at Ferguson or in Baltimore? You haven’t heard it here. You have heard me say get the bad ones out, but let’s let the system work. I know I have talked with countless officers. I very much understand and respect the men and women in blue. Blue lives matter, but that does not mean that I have to agree with the policies that they are being forced to abide by. I actually think those policies are very harmful to the officers you say I don’t respect.

Look, they are arming you to the teeth, and then have you noticed in Ferguson and in Baltimore, they had no-go zones. You’re armed to the teeth so you look provocative, and yet they’re holding you back. Why do you think they’re doing that? Why? They are causing the American people to lose trust in you. Nothing you’re doing is making the American people lose trust in you. This is orchestrated, and we must know what’s going on and what the end of the road is.

If we were just sitting here talking about violence and what we arm people with, you and I could have a very reasonable conversation, but that’s not what we’re talking about. We are talking tomorrow about who this guy is, who this guy is, the guy who put into motion the militarization of our police force. When you see him in the progressive era and what it has led to, what happened in the 1960s and 1970s and now this coordinated effort, with the president saying we need a well-armed police force, a well-armed civilian force, I guarantee you, it will not be the local police.

The president just said I’m taking some of this military equipment away. No, he’s not. No, he is not. What he really did was say I’m not going to sell you tanks. Well, I hope that the police aren’t saying that they need tanks now. We got that. And he said no grenade launchers. I don’t know a cop that says he needs a grenade launcher. So, he is creating the impression he says you’re out of control because remember, the police act stupidly, so he’s creating the impression that you’re out of control, that you have too much stuff, when in reality he’s not taking any of that stuff away.

His people are holding you back while they are calling for the Justice Department to take over local policing. Don’t you see the game that is being played, and the cops are being set up? By God, man, I’m your best friend because no one else will talk about this—strategy.

These policies of increased force and militarization present the police as occupying military, not a partner in the community. That is not the fault of the officer. Let me ask you something, is it a good thing for the police officer to get out and throw a football with a kid on the street? Absolutely. Why? Because it shows the cops to be just like you, part of the community. Hey, you can trust them. When they come rolling in an MRAP to serve a warrant on your neighbor, what the hell is that? That’s not part of the community. That’s an occupying force to many Americans, and unfortunately, our cops will suffer the consequences of these policies.

I invite you to watch the program tomorrow night and see if it changes your mind. It may not. It may not. I know that we have done months of homework on this particular program, months. I don’t expect to be popular with everybody. I know my views are controversial. I accept that. My job is to tell you the truth, whether you like it or not, the way I find it.

The problem is not the police officer. It is the policy of increased militarization. This is new. I don’t have a problem with our police officers. I have a problem with the Department of Homeland Security. And what else? What are they calling for? What is this top that will come down? I believe what our president, this administration, and many in Congress are lining up for is out of line with the vision of our framers, and I’m sorry, the Constitution is not just a cute rule of thumb. The Constitution is the law of the land. If you don’t like it, we should amend it. There are those who just want to overthrow it or dismiss it. I am neither of those two.

Taylor wrote and said, “If they have ak47 and I’m going into a house I at least want a [sic] m4 or something of equal stopping power. We are not fighting gangs with sling shots people.” I got it. I got it. If there’s a raid and we know they have AK-47s or we have reasonable belief that they do, by all means, lock and load, no problem, but you cannot apply that logic to the patrol of regular city streets because if you do, then my argument, just to be consistent, is we don’t know what the bad guys could have.

We’re dealing with ISIS coming across our border. They might have RPGs. We better have armored vehicles and MRAPs for all routine patrols just in case. You cannot go down that road. Jason, “Take the ‘military’ equipment away from the police and when the situation arises when that equipment is needed you’ll have to call out the actual military. Be careful what you wish for.” Don’t think that I haven’t thought that one through. I never said take the equipment away from the police. What I’m arguing is exactly what you say—when the equipment is needed, it should be the only time it’s used, not to serve warrants. This is not the reality now—80,000 SWAT events, 80,000 SWAT events.

When you see what a SWAT team was originally designed to be, it’ll make a lot of sense. It is being unnecessarily used. I invite you to go beyond judge a book by the cover. Don’t judge a program by a trailer. Watch the program for yourself. While I understand seeing the phrase “excessive force” in the headline can be misconstrued as typical anti-cop, Occupy Wall Street nonsense, I do not accept that from my thinking fans.

This is in no way with this program is about. I know many police officers who don’t agree with the overuse of military tactics. I know police officers, I know military men who are gravely concerned about the way we are using our police on the local level. They are concerned for your safety, your lives, and the future of our police departments.

There are times when force is justified, and I have no problem with those in those instances. When the case is borderline, I side with the judgment of the police. But let’s talk facts.

This is a moment "Cynical Theories" author James Lindsay probably hoped would never come. The liberal mathematician and host of the "New Discourses Podcast" recently came out as "unhappily" voting Republican, including for President Donald Trump, because the Democratic Party is now being controlled by a far-left movement that seeks to destroy our country and the U.S. Constitution.

He joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Thursday to explain why this election isn't "Trump versus Biden." It's Trump versus a "movement that wants to tear apart American society at its very foundation." Lindsay warned that if it isn't stopped, the left can toss out our rights by rewriting the Constitution — or abolishing it altogether.

"A lot of people don't understand what's happening with the election we have right now," he said. "They think it's a choice between Donald Trump and Joe Biden. And at the surface level, of course, it is. We're voting for each candidate to be duly put into the office of president. But that's not what we really have going on. We have, in Donald Trump, a man who's going to govern as we've all seen — the way he feels like he's going to govern. And we have in Joe Biden, a man captured by a movement that wants to tear apart the American society at its very foundation."

Lindsay noted the popular leftist narratives that call to "abolish anything they don't like," which now includes the U.S. Constitution. He added that "this is the movement that is controlling the Democratic Party."

"It is my belief, that there has been a largely effective kind of silent coup of the Democratic Party, that's turned it completely under the control of this movement. And that's what we're going to be electing with Joe Biden. So I can't do it," he said.

Watch the video below for more details:

Tonight at 9 p.m. ET, 8 p.m. CT, Glenn Beck goes straight to the source of the biggest story in the country with Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who takes us directly into Hunter Biden's alleged laptop.

Despite Big Tech's attempts to squash this story, there should be a mad scramble in the media to get to the bottom of major corruption allegations, but they're willfully ignoring it. However, this is not just a story about Hunter Biden. This is all about Joe Biden. It's a story Glenn has been investigating for over a year that traces back to Ukraine and China. It goes directly to the root of corruption within our political system: How politicians use their family members to enrich the entire clan and sell out their country. While the media looks the other way, Glenn asks Mayor Giuliani to show us the evidence. Giuliani details the chain of possession of the laptop and reveals news that he only had possession of the laptop days before the New York Post story broke. He says, "I reported this the day after I saw it."

He also drops a major bombshell on the show and says Big Tech doesn't want you to see evidence that "establishes with texts, documents, contracts" that "Joe Biden was a 10% partner with a Chinese communist … and there are witnesses that will come forward and testify to it."

Big Tech censorship is out of control. So to watch tonight's explosive episode of Glenn TV, you must be a BlazeTV subscriber. Because Big Tech is doing whatever it can to limit free speech, we're offering our most important discount on BlazeTV ever. Use promo code GLENN to get $30 off a one-year subscription, so you'll have 24/7 access to news and entertainment completely free of biased "fact-checks" and censorship.

Watch a preview of the show below:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

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The Senate Judiciary Committee was set to vote on subpoenas to compel Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify on alleged censorship and bias across their platforms. But that all changed when Republican committee members "expressed reservation about the maneuver," Politico reports.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who chairs Judiciary's Subcommittee on the Constitution, was definitely not one of the committee members with cold feet. On the radio program Tuesday, he told Glenn Beck that he's fighting "vociferously" to ensure Dorsey and others testify before the November 3rd election.

"Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg are both going to testify. They're are going to testify in person. They're going to testify before Election Day. That's what I think should happen," Cruz said. "That's what I'm fighting vociferously to happen. Right now, the companies are negotiating with the chairman's office to discuss terms to come voluntarily. I don't give a damn whether they come voluntarily or under subpoena. They need to testify in person and answer questions for the American people about why they are trying to steal this election, to suppress the free speech, and to censor the press."

The subpoenas would require Big Tech leaders to testify on the alleged "suppression and/or censorship" of two consecutive blockbuster stories from the New York Post. The first story was about emails that allegedly came from Hunter Biden's computer which are currently being investigated by the FBI, and the second was based on additional emails that allegedly showed communist China directly offering millions of dollars to then-Vice President Joe Biden.

"Big Tech stepped in, and they've done something they've never done before," Cruz explained. "We know that Big Tech has been censoring individual conservatives, trying to suppress conservative speech. But the step they took here is, they blocked if any individual user tried to share either of the New York Post stories, [they] were blocked ... Sharing a news story, from a major media outlet is part of democracy, part of free speech. And not only that, they blocked the New York Post itself. Right now, today, the New York Post is not being allowed to post its own damn stories on corruption. This is ridiculous. It's a threshold that's never been crossed before, of Silicon Valley oligarchs declaring the authority to determine what the press is allowed to report, and who is allowed to see it."

Watch the video below to catch more of the conversation:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

If we learned nothing from the media over the past 4 years it's that colluding with a foreign entity to either win an election or for personal gain is absolutely grotesque. Well, that depends on whether you have a (D) or (R) before your name anyway. President Trump was impeached on rumor and innuendo yet Joe Biden has all but skated on his corruption up to this point.

Below is a timeline that shows the level of corruption and the lengths the Biden's went to in order to build that family's wealth and influence internationally.

2009

In 2009, Joe Biden was the brand-new Vice President and John Kerry was a U.S. Senator. Just five months after Joe was sworn in, his son Hunter, and Kerry's stepson, Christopher Heinz, formed an international private equity firm called Rosemont Capital. It had several different branches, including one called Rosemont Seneca Partners.

2010

Just nine months after Rosemont Seneca opened its doors, Hunter Biden went to China for meetings with executives from China's biggest banks, and its sovereign wealth and social security funds. That's unheard-of access for a brand-new firm. Was it just coincidence that at the same time Hunter was meeting these Chinese bigwigs, his dad was meeting with China's then-president Hu Jintao in Washington DC at a nuclear security summit?

2011

In May 2011, Joe Biden met with Chinese officials for the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue conference in Washington. Just two weeks later, Hunter Biden went to Taiwan for meetings with the same Chinese financial giants he'd met in China in 2010, plus some new ones.

2013

By December 2013, Joe Biden was enjoying his second term as VP, and John Kerry was now Secretary of State. That's when Joe traveled to Beijing on an extended official trip and Hunter traveled with him on Air Force Two.

During their stay, Vice President Biden met with President Xi and Hunter was mostly out of sight. We don't know exactly what he was up to, but the deal finalized between Rosemont Seneca and the Bank of China just ten days after the Bidens' trip pretty much gives it away. The most powerful financial institution in China formed a joint venture with tiny Rosemont Seneca to create a giant new investment firm called Bohai Harvest RST – the "RS" stands for Rosemont Seneca.

The firm is often called "BHR" for short.

Hunter Biden was a member of the Board. Remember, the Bank of China is government-owned, which means its business is completely intertwined with the goals of the Chinese Communist Party. BHR also got the freedom to operate in the newly created Shanghai Free-Trade Zone where, over the next six years, it would use $2.5 billion of Chinese government money to invest in China, as well as in other countries, including the U.S.

During their Beijing trip, Hunter also introduced Jonathan Li to his dad. Li is Hunter's business partner – he's CEO and Director of BHR.

Hunter arranged for Joe to meet Li in the lobby of the hotel where they stayed during their Beijing trip.

2014

In 2014, one of BHR's first major investments was in the China General Nuclear Power Corporation.

CGN is a Chinese government-owned nuclear power company that sold off a stake of the company to outside investors. Problem is, CGN was under FBI investigation for paying informants in the U.S. to steal nuclear secrets.

In 2016, the FBI arrested the ringleader of this nuclear espionage, a man named Allen Ho.

When they arrested Ho, he was using a random code generator to access funds being provided to him from – where else? – the Bank of China.

Yet while this FBI probe was going on, the son of the Vice President owned a stake in the company being investigated. And even after arrests were made, Rosemont Seneca did not alter its relationship with BHR, nor did it divest from CGN, even though it was stealing U.S. nuclear secrets.

2015

In 2015, BHR partnered with the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) to buy an American company called Henniges for $600 million.

AVIC is a gigantic military contractor in China – think Lockheed Martin – that makes fighter jets, bombers and drones. BHR bought 49% of Henniges and AVIC bought 51%.

Henniges is a precision parts manufacturer specializing in anti-vibration technology. The stuff they make is known as "dual use" by the U.S. State Department, which means the technology can also have a military application.

Because of that, the deal had to be approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS) since it could have national security implications. The thing is, the American side of BHR – meaning Hunter Biden and his pals – had to know there were serious national security implications with AVIC.

The year before they formed a partnership with AVIC, the Wall Street Journal reported how AVIC stole technology related to the U.S. Air Force's F-35 stealth fighter and used it in its own stealth fighter for the Chinese.

How the Committee on Foreign Investment approved that deal remains a mystery. CFIUS does not publicly disclose any information regarding its decisions. Their findings are not publicly announced.

Interesting that China accounted for the largest share – with 74 transactions – approved by CFIUS during Obama's second term (2013-2015).

Under the umbrella of Rosemont Capital was a real estate company called Rosemont Realty. In 2015, a Chinese company called Gemini Investments bought a 75% stake in Rosemont Realty. The company was renamed Gemini Rosemont

Gemini brought $3 billion to the partnership with Rosemont, with the aim of buying "Class A institutional-quality commercial office properties in U.S. markets."

Red flag (literally) – Gemini Investments is a subsidiary of the China Ocean Shipping Company, a.k.a., "COSCO."

COSCO is a Chinese government-owned company. Its headquarters in Beijing is actually next to the headquarters of the Bank of China. COSCO is well-known for its close military ties. It's essentially a branch of the Chinese Navy.

2017

In 2017, BHR invested in Face++. That's the facial recognition phone app built by a Chinese company that is incorporated in a separate app built by the Chinese government. Police in the Xinjiang [Sin-jong] region of China use that app to keep tabs on citizens, and track and detain Uiguhr [Wee-ger] Muslims.

The app allows police easy access to data about Chinese Muslims including things like religious activity, blood type, and even the amount of electricity they use.

2018

In March 2018, a spokesman (Chris Bastardi) for Christopher Heinz (John Kerry's stepson) emailed The Hill to say that Heinz had "no operating role" in Rosemont Seneca, and that he was not involved in any of Rosemont's deals in China (which contradicts Schweizer's report in his book Secret Empires).

Chris Heinz was involved in Rosemont Capital. Rosemont Seneca was established under the same GP as Rosemont Capital, but Chris Heinz had no operating role in it. Chris and his family have no financial interest or investment in Bohai Harvest RST, he has never traveled to China, and he has never met with the firm's Chinese management team or investors.

2019

In October 2019, Hunter Biden's lawyer, George Mesires, said Hunter did not conduct any business on that 2013 trip to Beijing with his Dad.

Mesires said the timing of BHR's business license getting approved was purely coincidental because the paperwork had been submitted months before the Bidens' China trip.

According to Hunter's lawyer, the approval " was not related in any way, shape or form to Hunter's visit."

Hunter Biden finally stepped down from the BHR board last October (2019), but he DID NOT give up his 10% stake in the company.