Retail chain Macy’s announced Wednesday that they will be severing ties with business magnate Donald Trump, citing his statements about Hispanics as the reason. Macy’s sells Trump’s line of clothes and fragrances.
Macy’s official statement reads in part “In light of statements made by Donald Trump, which are inconsistent with Macy’s values, we have decided to discontinue our businesscrelationship with Mr. Trump and will phase-out the Trump menswear collection, which has been sold at Macy’s since 2004.”
The remarks referenced came originally in a speech in which Trump announced his bid for the presidency, when he said in part “When Mexico sends its people… They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people .”
Macy’s made its move after an interview a week later, when Trump said “I like Mexico. I love the Mexican people. I do business with the Mexican people, but you have people coming through the border who are from all over. And they’re bad. They’re really bad.”
Trump went on to say that the situation at the border is worse than most Americans know, and that if elected he would see to it that a wall is built.
Macy’s decision was driven in part by a petition from moveon.org, which to date has over 730,000 signatures. The heading of the petition says “Macy’s: Donald Trump does not reflect “the magic of Macy’s.” We urge you to sever ties with him. Macy’s says it has a strong obligation to be “socially responsible” and that “actions speak louder than words.” Indeed. It’s time to act.”
The wording is strange, given Macy’s continued association with notorious rappers Sean Combs, known by the aliases “Puffy,” “Puff Daddy,” and “P. Diddy,” and Jay-Z. Both men have made music that glorifies drug dealing, misogyny, and racial conflict, and both men have clothes available for sale on Macy’s website at the time of this writing.
Jay-z’s Rocawear label only has a few items listed, but Combs’ Sean John line is one of Macy’s featured brands, with a huge website presence.
Since Macy’s obviously only does business with people who reflect their values and the magic of Macy’s, it is instructive to take a look at the values Combs reflects.
Combs was charged in 1999 with gun possession and bribery in connection with a nightclub shooting. He was not convicted.
In May of 1999 Combs and two other men attacked Steve Soute over differences in the production of a music video. Coombs allegedly hit Soute with a champagne bottle, breaking his arm and jaw. The case was settled out of court.
A 2009 incident alleging racism and sexism relating to the casting of a Ciroc vodka ad shows up with multiple hits on a google search but is curiously not available on a number of the host sites. Combs put out a casting call for the ad seeking “White, Hispanic and Light-skinned African American” women. Blacks across the country were justifiably upset.
In 2011, Combs threw ice at a man and called him a “f****t” for drinking Grey Goose vodka instead of Combs’ Ciroc brand.
At a basketball game in 2012, Combs was interviewed on the sideline about starting a new television network. When asked about it, Combs responded “Yes, yes, Revolt TV, new network coming to you soon. The revolution will be televised, black power, you see it, put a fist in the air.” He then followed suit, raising his fist in the black power salute. In the same interview, Combs opined “White men can’t jump.”
2013 saw Combs causing outrage with an Instagram post of a painting depicting naked white women in awe of a naked black woman. He captioned the photo “As it should Be!!!!!!! #BlackIsBeautiful”
Combs was arrested again just last month, on three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of battery, and one count of making terrorist threats. These charges stem from Combs attacking the UCLA Bruins football coaching staff, allegedly with a kettlebell exercise weight, over their use of his son. The younger Combs is a defensive back for the team.
There are numerous other incidents of reprehensible behavior in Combs’ history, too many to catalogue. It is good to know that Macy’s sees there values reflected accurately by a man who has been in trouble with the law for assault on numerous occasions, has been tied to murder, freely uses ethnic, sexist, and homophobic slurs, and generally has a total disregard for both the law and civility.
Compared to that, Trump’s rhetoric about illegal immigrants seems positively saintly. The message is clear: by shopping at Macy’s, you are endorsing bigoted and criminal behavior.