Trump Calls for Goodyear Boycott
President Donald Trump has called for a boycott of Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. after an image reportedly from an employee training seminar at the tiremaker’s Topeka, Kan., plant made the news. That image notes that attire with Trump’s slogan “Make America Great Again” is unacceptable.
Also in the unacceptable category on that same image are these slogans:
- Blue Lives Matter
- All Lives Matter
- Political Affiliated Slogans or Material
In the “acceptable” category were these slogans and categories:
- Black Lives Matter (BLM)
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Pride (LGBT)
Goodyear has released a statement after an employee said the slide presented in a training was discriminatory. https://t.co/H9B1gRu2r7— WIBW (@wibw) August 18, 2020
An employee at Goodyear’s Topeka facility took a photograph of the presentation slide and shared it with local television station WIBW. The employee told the station that the information was presented by an area manager, who said that it came from Goodyear’s corporate office in Akron, Ohio.
Goodyear provided a statement to the television station, and has since released a longer statement on its Twitter account (below). Goodyear provided the same statement to Modern Tire Dealer without any elaboration.
A day after the story broke in Topeka, it gained an international audience when Trump called for a boycott of Goodyear on Twitter.
Don’t buy GOODYEAR TIRES - They announced a BAN ON MAGA HATS. Get better tires for far less! (This is what the Radical Left Democrats do. Two can play the same game, and we have to start playing it now!).— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 19, 2020
Here’s is Goodyear’s full statement:
“Yesterday, Goodyear became the focus of a conversation that created some misconceptions about our policies and our company. For those not aware, a widely circulated image sparked a strong reaction, and we wanted to take the opportunity to provide some important context to the visual and our policies.
“First the visual in question was not created or distributed by Goodyear corporate, nor was it part of a diversity training class. To be clear on our longstanding corporate policy, Goodyear has zero tolerance for any forms of harassment or discrimination. To enable a work environment free of those, we ask that associates refrain from workplace expressions in support of political campaigning for any candidate or political party, as well as similar forms of advocacy that fall outside the scope of racial justice and equity issues.
“Second, we appreciate the diverse viewpoints of all of our more than 60,000 associates, which are at the heart of many of the policies we establish. Fostering an inclusive, respectful workplace is important to establish teamwork and build culture, which is another reason we ask associates not to engage in political campaigning of any kind in the workplace - for any candidate, party or political organization.
“Third and finally, Goodyear has always wholeheartedly supported both equality and law enforcement and will continue to do so. These are not mutually exclusive. We have heard from some of you that believe Goodyear is anti-police after reacting to the visual. Nothing could be further from the truth, and we have the upmost appreciation for the vital work police do on behalf of our shared communities. This can’t be said strongly enough.”
Goodyear posted that statement, addressed to its “customers, partners and associates” this morning on Twitter. It also turned off a function where readers of the tweet can post comments and respond directly to the tiremaker.
Notably, Goodyear does not mention the president in its statement.
Yesterday, Goodyear became the focus of a conversation that created some misconceptions about our policies and our company. Goodyear has always wholeheartedly supported both equality and law enforcement and will continue to do so. pic.twitter.com/oO6jUg2rTR— Goodyear (@goodyear) August 19, 2020
Tire dealers have been weighing in as the story has evolved. One spot to do so is in a MTD poll on Twitter:
Tire dealers, what’s happening in your stores and on your phones today regarding Trump & a Goodyear boycott?— Modern Tire Dealer (@MTDMagazine) August 19, 2020