Target is really aiming (hardy har) to get on our good side these days!
Though higher ups at the bulls-eye insist the new line of Pride t-shirts has zilch to do with that massive 2010 donation to anti-gay politico Tom Emmer, with 100 percent of sales going to the Family Equality Council, would criticizing the retailer nowadays just be splitting hairs? (Details follow.)
Target has launched a line of Pride t-shirts (including designs by Gwen Stefani) available online to celebrate National Pride Month, with sales through June 30 going to the Family Equality Council.
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports:
"I certainly recognize what an incredible reaction [the Emmer-related donation] generated," said Jennifer Chrisler, the council's executive director. "But here's what I know about Target and their work with us: They're 100 percent committed to the goal of families being respected in all communities including parents who happen to be LGBT. This is just a continuation of that support."
Ten T-shirts are now featured on Target's website with gay-friendly themes. Two feature a design by rocker Gwen Stefani, who has her own line of kids' hipster clothing called Harajuku Mini at Target. The Stefani design reads, "Love is love." Each Pride T-shirt sells for $12.99, all of which will be donated to the Family Equality Council. Donations are capped at $120,000.
Target spokeswoman Molly Snyder said the Pride T-shirt promotion grew out of a grass-roots effort among employees and the company's LGBTA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and allies) Business Council, which includes about 1,200 employees at the company's headquarters.
"Over the past year, we heard from our team members and guests that they'd like to see an assortment of Pride merchandise available at Target," Snyder said. The promotion went live on Sunday, in time for the gay pride season next month, which includes with the 40th annual Pride festival on June 23 and 24.
Target displaying its Pride and support of the LGBT via retail is certainly commendable, but as Minnesota (homebase for the company) faces an anti-marriage equality amendment, wouldn't it be nice for the retailer to show hometown Pride, too? Unfortunately, though a few in Minnesota's big business community have spoken out against the anachronistic anti-gay amendment, Target has remained silent on the issue.
The Star-Tribune adds:
In a statement, the company notes its "long history" of supporting the LGBT community but acknowledges "there is a broad range of strongly held views on the [Minnesota] Marriage Amendment." The company goes on to encourage employees to exercise their right to vote.
So, does Target's unwillingness to defend equality in Minnesota diminish the applause it hopes we're generating for its just-launched Pride t-shirt line?
(Source: Star-Tribune; Image: Target.com)