By Suzanne Bowdey
Making money is tough for businesses these days. Making friends is even harder. For most CEOs, Pride Month was already a lose-lose situation — celebrate too much and risk consumer backlash. Ignore it and face the fringe. But if companies thought walking that tightrope was tough, it’s nothing compared to the Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) latest shakedown. Just how much power does the LGBT movement wield? The world is about to find out.
Corporate boardrooms are as tense as it gets right now, but don’t expect any sympathy from the Left. While CEOs deal with the two-headed monster of a tanking economy and woke backlash, every decision seems to carry extra weight. After the Disney aftershocks, more businesses are treading carefully on cultural issues. But that’s all about to end, if HRC gets their way.
As a thank you to companies who’ve spent the last 20 years turning themselves inside out for their extremist causes, the country’s biggest LGBT advocate is demanding more. Much more. It’s no longer enough to sell rainbow merch, offer benefits to same-sex spouses, pay for transgender treatments, open your bathrooms to both sexes, and hire diversity officers. It’s time, HRC’s interim president says, to go “beyond HR plans and benefits.” From now on, if companies want a high score on HRC’s “Best Places to Work” index, then it’s time that they “do even more,” Joni Madison argues. It’s time they take a stand in the public square.
To get into the LGBT movement’s good graces, CEOs will have to politically kamikaze, speaking publicly “against elected officials harming LGBTQ+ youth.” Like Lucy with the football, HRC is ripping the rug out from under Fortune 500 companies that have spent two decades ingratiating themselves to their cultural hostage-takers. Now, after more than proving their loyalty, the Left is raising the ransom.
Twenty years after HRC’s first Equality Index, when the group was lucky to find 13 companies willing to go all-in on their radicalism, LGBT activists are pressing their corporate luck. This new standard, two months after Florida called Bob Chapek’s bluff, demands that every business walk Disney’s plank. “We have a really, really aggressive political environment where we are being weaponized and politicized, and we need corporations standing up to humanize us,” GLAAD’s Sarah Kate Ellis insisted. Even if “humanizing” (otherwise known as “placating”) them costs the company everything.