Day 11-12: Corporations Stake Out a Side
As Donald Trump continues to polarize the world, corporations are starting to feel the pressure as well. Consumers are more aware today of their favorite company’s political leanings and expect their brands to take action. But before you burn your dad’s sneakers or ask a Starbucks barista to write “Trump” on your cup, take a look at Jerk’s list of the top 3 pro-Trump and anti-Trump companies. Who said being a conscious objector wasn’t effective?
- New Balance
The makers of some of the world’s most hideous shoes have drawn significant ire because of comments from a spokesperson who believes that with Trump “Things are going to move in the right direction.” Out of protest, a few disenfranchised New Balanced owners set their shoes aflame.
NASCAR, in all its wonderful circular monotony, has been a strong proponent of Trump. CEO Brian France has been a longtime supporter of Trump, and Reed Sorenson drove his #55 car with a subtle nod to the 45th President. The fallout has been minimal, as NASCAR viewership tends to be stronger amongst southern, red states.
After a MillerCoors executive held a fundraiser for Trump’s campaign, many bar owners decided to drop the beer company. Boycotting MillerCoors shouldn’t be hard, it’s not like they make every beer on the face of the earth.
Starbucks became the victim of perhaps the strangest boycott of the past year, with Trump supporters asking Starbucks baristas to write “Trump” on their coffee cups, and videotaping the baristas if they refused. The boycott wasn’t even because of CEO Howard Schultz’ endorsement of Hillary Clinton, but rather because an angry Trump supporter “had a bad day.” On his “bad day” he called the barista “trash” and “garbage”. Stay classy.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings issued a scathing rebuke of Trump, in which he called his actions “So un-American it pains us all.” This was in response to Trump’s partial Muslim ban, which affected many of Hastings’ employees.
- Uber and Lyft
If you deleted Uber last week amidst the surge of backlash the company faced for continuing to service the JFK airport at a time when the local Taxi companies had gone on strike, you might want to consider reinstalling the app. Earlier that day, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick issued a statement critical of Trump’s ban, and the JFK incident seems to have been a misunderstanding. Uber’s main competitor, Lyft pledged to donate $1 million to the ACLU.
Companies, whether for or against, must decide which side they are on in this harsh political climate. But they risk turning customers off on both ends.