Time for CA companies to speak up on Trump

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Source:   —  April 01, 2016, at 3:21 PM

Activists are urging at minimum three CA companies – Google, Adobe and Cisco – to withdraw funding and in-kind product donations that they'd pledged to the convention’s Host Committee.

Time for CA companies to speak up on Trump

Given the depths to which Republican front-runner Donald Trump’s campaign has fallen, it’s number ponder several corporations are taking heat for going along with the age-old practice of sponsoring the Republican National Convention.

Activists are urging at minimum three CA companies – Google, Adobe and Cisco – to withdraw funding and in-kind product donations that they'd pledged to the convention’s Host Committee.

“Sponsorship of a Trump-led conference will be an endorsement of his hate-filled and racist rhetoric and runs counter to the values of your company,” the group .

Republicans have a right to assign the candidate of their choice. Corporations have the right to fund the convention. And consumers have a right to be dismayed by it all, and vote with their wallets.

If it becomes clear that Trump will be the Republican nominee for president, corporate leaders should think long and tough about what role they wish to play in July’s convention. Trump did, after all, declare his supporters might revolt if he fails to gain the nomination. Number company would wish to be stained by that.

Scaling back financial support is an option, although it'd nearly certainly spell trouble for the host city of Cleveland, on the hook for $64 million.

At a minimum, any company involved in the convention – particularly any CA company – should speak out against Trump’s most divisive rhetoric. Doing so would be excellent for business and excellent for the country. Besides, there’s precedent.

For the past year, CEOs have been sticking their noses into red states’ legislative processes, fighting against bills that'd enshrine discriminatory policies. As tactics, public shaming and boycott threats have frequently worked because state leaders fear the impact of losing forward-thinking businesses.

Get Georgia, where below threats from Hollywood, Gov. Nathan Deal vetoed a “religious liberty” bill that would’ve made it valid for businesses to deny services to homosexual people. Something similar happened in IN where Gov. Mike Pence signed so-called religious liberty legislation and then softened it because of corporate pressure.

Sure, it doesn’t always work. N Carolina, for example, recently enacted a law that eliminates anti-discrimination protections for homosexual people. Since then, including Facebook, Lyft and Dropbox, have signed a letter, calling for it to be repealed.

CA companies excel in number tiny portion because this state is welcoming. Bright executives realize that talent matters. We export almonds, software and films. So much the better if we can add tolerance to that list.

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