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19 Jul, 2020 22:54

When cancel culture finds its limits: Woke brigade’s push to destroy Goya for praising Trump falters as grocers reject boycott

When cancel culture finds its limits: Woke brigade’s push to destroy Goya for praising Trump falters as grocers reject boycott

An effort by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other leftists to punish Goya Foods because the ethnic foodmaker’s chief executive complimented President Trump has lost a key constituency right in the New York congresswoman’s backyard.

The United Bodegas of America, a trade group for small food and variety stores that cater to Hispanic consumers, has decided to defy a boycott of Goya Foods products. Members of the group gathered in New York on Saturday to show their support for Goya, saying the firm is “the most socially responsible company in the world.”

The association praised Goya, the largest Hispanic-owned food company in the US, for its donations of millions of cans of its products to food banks, and noted that the company employees more than 5,000 people in the New York City metropolitan area. “We want to send a very clear message to those that think for one moment we would consider boycotting our family: You do not boycott family,” group spokesman Fernando Mateo said.

Also on rt.com Brand suicide or savvy PR move? CEO of Hispanic food giant Goya praises Trump, inciting Twitter riots

Bodegas not only will continue stocking Goya products, but at least some will encourage customers to buy more. Francisco Marte, owner of three bodegas in the Bronx, wrote in a July 15 op-ed piece in the New York Post that thousands of bodegas in the city are calling for a Goya “buycott.” He called the boycott initiative an “insult to Hispanics” and said it was being led by “politicians and pundits – some Hispanic, some painfully woke-white.”

Part of the Bronx borough is located in Ocasio-Cortez’s congressional district. After Goya CEO Robert Unanue praised the president during a July 9 White House visit – saying “We are truly blessed at the same time to have a leader like President Trump who is a builder” – Ocasio-Cortez joined in the calls to stop buying the company’s products. “Oh look,” she quipped on Twitter. “It’s the sound of me Googling`how to make your own adobo,’” referring to a popular Goya seasoning mix.

The reaction to Unanue’s speech and his refusal afterward to apologize made Goya a new battleground in a US culture war. Trump sent a Twitter message the next day professing his “love” for Goya, and his daughter, Ivanka Trump, later tweeted a photo of herself holding a can of Goya black beans. The caption above said, in both English and Spanish, “If it’s Goya, it has to be good.” After Reuters and other media outlets questioned whether the tweet violated ethics rules against endorsing products, President Trump posted a photo on his Instagram account showing him in the Oval Office with a selection of Goya products displayed on his desk.

Many Trump supporters and free-speech advocates responded to the boycott by buying Goya products in bulk. Casey Harper, one of several people who started fundraising campaigns to spur more Goya purchases, said in a Fox Business interview that Americans are rising up against “this vicious cancel culture.” Harper’s GoFundMe campaign has raised more than $311,000, or 31 times his original goal, which will be used to buy Goya products that will be donated to food charities.

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