Leftists are pressuring Twitter advertisers to abandon the platform
A huge number of leftist activist groups, which get their money from Soros, Clintonites, Obamaites, and even the European government, are trying to bully corporations to stop advertising with Twitter once Elon Musk brings free speech to the platform. The big question is whether these companies will heed the left's siren call or, looking at Florida and Disney, stay out of politics.
Corporate America's swing to the left has played out in dozens of ways over the years. It hit the big time with the 2017 corporate boycott of the Breitbart website because it dared to support Donald Trump.
The example that sticks in my mind from 2019 was Gillette pandering to the LGBTQ+++ crowd by showing a proud father teaching his daughter how to shave the beard she had acquired thanks to taking testosterone. Gillette products are still banned in my house.
In 2020, of course, there was the groveling following George Floyd's drug-induced death, which saw Black squares all over Twitter; endless new diversity statements on corporate websites; and millions of dollars handed over to Black Lives Matter, which seems to like buying real estate. Professional sports, which had once offered entertainment and cross-party camaraderie, groveled and kneeled, too, turning off half of America.
Beginning in 2021, with BLM having run its course, the new woke virtue-signaling revolved around transgenderism. Sports Illustrated, when it published its swimsuit edition, tried to entice its male readers by featuring a man with breast implants and a skillfully contorted body meant to hide the fact that he has no waist and hips. Since then, everywhere, it's "transgender this" and "transgender that."
The whole transgender thing culminated when Disney threatened to force the Florida Legislature to reverse a bill protecting children from groomers in schools. That was followed by a bunch of leaks showing Disney's creepy obsession with transgenderism, sexual identity, gender identity, and children. We'd always known that former Disney TV stars tended to show signs of sexual trauma (with some making it clear that they had, in fact, been sexually exploited), but this was different: Disney was promising to go after everyone's children.
Florida's Legislature slapped Disney back, hard. The Legislature passed, and Governor Ron DeSantis signed, a bill stripping Disney of its self-governing status. The bill is already the subject of legal action but there's no reason to believe that Disney won't suck it up to retain its premium properties in Orlando.
Corporate CEOs, who previously had signaled their virtue with impunity, are suddenly getting nervous. The first sign was when ExxonMobil announced that it would no longer fly any issue flags (BLM, LGBTQ++, etc.) in front of its headquarters. The Wall Street Journal reported that other CEOs are getting nervous, too.
The fallout from the recent political spat between Disney and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has alarmed leaders across the corporate sphere, according to executives and their advisers, and heightened the challenges for chief executive officers navigating charged topics.
This question must be even more vexing to these CEOs now that Twitter has accepted Elon Musk's buy-out offer. That's because Media Matters, a left-wing advocacy group, has joined with myriad other left-wing groups (GLAAD, BLM, NARAL, Women's March, etc.) to send a letter to the top advertisers on Twitter telling them to pull their ads if Musk goes forward with his plan to bring free speech principles to the platform. Failing that, threatens the letter, "your brand risks association with a platform amplifying hate, extremism, health misinformation, and conspiracy theorists." (Never mind that they've just described Twitter under its current management.)
Musk immediately demanded to know where the real money came from for this attack on free speech:
Interesting. I wonder if those funding these organizations are fully aware of what the organizations are doing. https://t.co/YzVZIvF68E— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 4, 2022
It turns out that the funders' names are familiar; thus, some of the money behind these institutions is tied to George Soros; the Clintons; the Obamas; the National Education Association; Warren Buffett's son, Peter; the Pritzker family foundation; a British-based group led by Imran Ahmed, a senior Labor Party leader; and, when it comes to Access Now, several European countries (Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands), and Canada.
On the one hand, it's quite scary to see all these fabulously wealthy and powerful people and organizations line up against free speech. On the other hand, one of the blessings of the Biden era is that, at long last, these same people and organizations that forced their values and political candidates on America, even as they lurked in the shadows, are coming into the open. This provides two benefits for people who cherish American values: (1) we weren't imagining things; and (2) it's easier to fight a visible ideological foe than an invisible one.
And the big question, as noted at the top of this post, is whether corporations will continue to bow to the left, or whether they'll remember that their obligation to the taxpayers is to make a profit, something best done if they do not alienate half of America by wading into politics rather than focusing on their products.