A conservative women’s group has lashed out at global coffee giant Starbucks, accusing the corporation of discriminating against straight people over its inclusion of LGBT people and recent calls for marriage equality.
In a posting on Concerned Women for America’s website, penned by the group’s media strategist Chelsen Vicari, they claim that the CEO of the coffee giant has become “extreme and intolerant.” The post claimed that Howard Schultz was actively refusing the custom of “pro-marriage supporters.”
She argues that Starbucks should have “heeded her warning” from an article written a year ago, and questions whether the company will refuse to hire straight people. She then urged their supporters to purchase coffee from other companies in an apparent call for boycott of the chain.
Schultz continued to defend his support of marriage equality at the company’s shareholder meeting last Wednesday.
He said that “not every decision is an economic decision. The lens we use to make decisions is the lens of our people. We want to embrace diversity.”
Shareholder Tom Strobhar pointed out a dip in sales after the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) launched its “Dump Starbucks” boycott last year.
“In the first fill quarter after this boycott was announced, our sales and our earnings — shall we say politely — were a bit disappointing,” he said.
To that fact, Schultz replied, “If you feel, respectfully, that you can get a higher return then the 38 percent you got last year, it’s a free country. You can sell your shares of Starbucks and buy shares in another company. Thank you very much.”
NOM’s boycott ended after two months due to an overwhelming show of support by marriage equality advocates who thanked the company for its position.
Starbucks encouraged Washington voters to approve the marriage equality referendum last year, and recently joined 300 other companies in filing a brief to the Supreme Court encouraging the body to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act.