Monday, June 13, 2016
Stay on Target
Target's slogan is "Expect more." And when it comes to safety, customers do. That's why Americans are so upset with the company's outrageous April policy that threw open the changing room and bathroom doors to anyone of either sex. Almost immediately, angry calls started streaming in to stores, eventually ballooning into a nationwide protest of more than 1.3 million people. If other CEOs were considering similar changes, they saw the heat Target was taking and backed off.
Now, almost two months into their transgender free-for-all, the outcry shows no signs of dying down. At yesterday's Target shareholders meeting in Costa Mesa, protestors filled the streets outside with signs to boycott the store. "We're not afraid of transgender people," one of the demonstrators explained. "I've got nine grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, and I'm worried that perverts will pretend to be women so they can get into women's restrooms." With its profits in the gender-free toilet, Target CEO Brian Cornell was on the hot seat with investors for the decision, which analysts say has cost the retailer more than $4.5 billion -- and counting.
Worried about crashing stocks, Cornell was pressed about the negative fallout from the unpopular policy. He insisted (with a straight face) that there was none. "Zero correlation, zero effect," he declared. That's a convenient response, but not a truthful one. As everyone on Wall Street knows, Target's stocks have taken a nearly 20-percent nosedive since April 19, when the change was announced. If there was zero correlation, why are Walmart and online retailers holding steady? Clearly, the boycott -- the most successful in American Family Association's history -- is having an enormous impact on Target's bottom line. But, much like Starbucks's CEO, who doggedly stuck by his company's anti-marriage campaign, Cornell made it known that he didn't care what consumers' think.
Read the entire update by Tony Perkins here.