Trump fans boycott Pepsi after CEO condemned "locker room talk," other Trump rhetoric
Americans voted at the polls last Tuesday and this week, some have vowed to vote with their wallets, too.
Several Trump supporters are calling for a boycott of Pepsi after the CEO publicly condemned Trump's campaign rhetoric last Thursday. Pepsi CEO Indra Nooyi expressed her sadness about the outcome of the election in an interview conducted by the New York Times DealBook.
Nooyi began the interview by congratulating President-elect Trump, and she later assured people who felt marginalized by Trump's rhetoric that they would be safe.
A staunch Clinton supporter, Nooyi also noted that Trump's unanticipated victory left her community asking a lot of questions.
"I had to answer a lot of questions, from my daughters, from my employees — they were all in mourning," Nooyi said. "Our employees are all crying and the question that they are asking, especially those that are not white: 'Are we safe?' Women are asking, 'Are we safe?' LGBT people are asking, 'Are we safe?' I never thought I'd have had to answer those questions."
Nooyi had an answer to those questions: "The first thing we have to do is assure everyone in the United States that you are safe," she said.
The CEO also condemned the President-elect's comments about grabbing women by their crotches.
"Forget about the Pepsi brand. How dare you talk about women that way? Why do we talk that way about a whole group of citizens? I don't think there's a place for that kind of language in any part of society. Not in locker rooms, not in football players' homes, not in any place," Nooyi said.
Though Nooyi congratulated President-elect Trump twice during the course of the interview, some Americans were angry she spoke out about the election at all.
If Trump supporters begin buying up Coca-Cola, they may be giving business to a brand that had close ties with Hillary Clinton in the past. The Coca-Cola Foundation has donated millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation, and Clinton was allegedly considering making the Coca-Cola CEO and Chairman Muhtar Kent her running mate, Mic previously reported. Notably, Kent was raised as a secular Muslim, so he is also part of a group targeted by Trump's rhetoric. (Trump has stated he will institute a ban on Muslims coming into the U.S.)
Nooyi's condemnation of Trump's sexist rhetoric is encouraging, but her assurance that everyone in the U.S. will be safe feels empty. There's no promise of action. Will the company work to protect employees that are undocumented immigrants? Is there a corporate structure for dealing with sexual harassment or bigotry within the company itself?
Recently, the alt-right has boycotted other companies that actively work to protect marginalized communities. Several Americans boycotted yogurt empire Chobani after learning the company hires immigrants and Muslim refugees, The boycott backfired when other Americans bought even more Chobani in support of the company's hiring practices.
A spokesperson for Pepsi declined Mic's request to comment on the record.
You can watch Nooyi's full interview below: