Target reports first sales decline in 6 years after boycotts over ‘Pride Month’ merchandise


Target gay pride products ignited political protests with its “tuck friendly” crotch construction, Los Angeles, California, June 2, 2023. / Shutterstock

Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Aug 17, 2023 / 15:17 pm (CNA).

Target reported its first sales and revenue decline in six years on Wednesday, with comparable sales dropping by 5.4%. Target’s decline comes after a nationwide conservative-led boycott of the store over its promotion of LGBTQ+ ideology and transgender products for adults and children during June’s “Pride Month.”

The loss in sales also led to a drop in revenue, with Target earning 4.9% less than the same period last year.

According to CNBC, Target CEO Brian Cornell attributed the decline to both inflation and “negative guest reaction to our Pride collection.”

Outrage erupted this June after shoppers discovered transgender and Pride-themed clothes and merchandise for adults and children.

Target has been promoting LGBTQ+-themed merchandise for over a decade, but this year social media posts about the gear led to widespread calls for boycotts across the country.

Among the merchandise promoted by Target during June were adult women’s-style swimwear intended to help transgender-identifying men conceal their genitals as well as a children’s swim skirt with a tag describing itself as fit for “multiple body types and gender expressions.”

One of Target’s Pride merchandise partners, U.K.-based brand Abprallen, was discovered to also have produced apparel depicting satanic imagery and messages promoting violence against “homophobes.” Though these items were not sold at Target, the brand’s partnership with the store added to the anger fueling the boycott.

In a video recording taken in June, conservative commentator Benny Johnson showed Target’s Pride merchandise and said that the “Target brand needs to be toxic” among “people that believe in common sense and among people that are just basic anti-grooming, anti-sex-cult, and anti-satanism.”

Until now, it had not been clear what effect, if any, the boycott had on Target’s sales.

“As it turns out, working with Satanists to push transgenderism on children was not a wise business strategy,” Michael Seifert, founder and CEO of the conservative Amazon alternative PublicSq., commented on X.

Cornell said that after Target decided to remove some of its Pride merchandise from shelves in June “to address safety concerns,” the store’s sales started to “normalize.”

Target joins Bud Light and Disney, which also saw significant losses following conservative boycotts over their promotion of LGBTQ+ and transgender ideology.

Perhaps the biggest boycott of the year, Bud Light’s parent company Anheuser-Busch InBev saw a 10.5% drop in revenue this quarter after the brand announced a disastrous partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney in April.

Bud Light’s losses led the company to place its marketing vice president on leave and lay off hundreds of workers.

Corporations appear to have been particularly impacted by conservative boycotts over LGBTQ+ issues this year. Even Starbucks, long a solidly leftist company, made headlines when employees reported corporate officials advising stores to take down Pride month decorations.

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  1. In this ongoing battle, this is one of the fields on which these people choose to fight, and we really have no choice but to join the battle there. I have no doubt that sooner or later they will find a way to pronounce themselves ‘victims’ for some silly reason or other, but that is one of their main tactics from the beginning, as they have shown many times.

  2. Catholics may be finally figuring out that, as regards the things of God and of Caesar, fidelity to the former may mean withholding the latter to some folks, who might find the squeeze is tighter than even their “tuck friendly” designs allow for.

  3. The “moral” of the story:
    If you don’t want to take a hit, don’t paint a TARGET on you back, or wherever.

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