Right-wing snowflakes boycott ‘woke’ Coca-Cola to drink Pepsi instead. It’s going to backfire, badly
Republicans are boycotting Coca-Cola after the company’s CEO hit out at a new law passed in Georgia that restricts voting rights – but their alternative isn’t exactly ideal either.
Georgia governor Brian Kemp signed a bill into law in March that is expected to significantly roll back voting rights and access, particularly for Black Americans. Under the terms of the law, outside groups are banned from giving food and water to people queuing to cast their vote, while additional identification requirements will also be on the table for absentee voters.
The law has faced fierce backlash from the private sector, including Coca-Cola, which was founded in Atlanta, Georgia. CEO James Quincey lambasted the legislation in a statement released on Thursday (1 April), saying the company is “disappointed” as the law will “diminish or deter access to voting”.
Republicans responded in the usual way – by calling for a boycott of the drink. Coca-Cola has provided lawmakers in Georgia with free drinks for decades, according to AJC – but that didn’t stop eight Republicans from writing to the Georgia Beverage Association requesting that all of the company’s products be removed from their offices in response to Quincey’s statement.
Republicans want to boycott Coca-Cola – but Pepsi doesn’t align with their values
Some Republicans – including Donald Trump – are now calling on supporters to boycott Coca-Cola, while others are pushing for conservative lawmakers to switch to Pepsi instead. Georgia House of Representatives Speaker David Ralston pointedly opened a Pepsi following a legislative session, while Texas senator Ted Cruz shared a tweet encouraging people to switch to Pepsi, too.
But Coca-Cola’s biggest rival isn’t exactly an ideal fit for Republican political ideals.
In fact, Pepsi has a long history of supporting LGBT+ rights – the same rights that Republicans have tirelessly pushed back against.
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On its website, Pepsi details its commitments to LGBT+ rights in the workplace, noting that it was awarded a perfect score on the Human Rights Campaign’s LGBT+ workplace ranking and was named the Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality.
Last year, following Black Lives Matter protests, Pepsi Co pledged to invest more than $400 million over the course of five years to tackle inequality and create opportunities for people from marginalised backgrounds – not something Republicans would generally be in favour of.
So Republicans giving up Coke because of the company’s support for voting rights may not exactly have anywhere else to turn.