By an ICC Research Committee member.
#GrabYourWallet is a boycott against Trump family businesses and retailers who sell or have ties to Trump products. It was started by Shannon Coulter in response to the Access Hollywood video of Donald Trump boasting about assaulting woman. She decided after viewing the video she could no longer spend her money on anything associated with Donald Trump. She went on Twitter looking for others who shared this view and found Sue Atencio, a 59 year old grandmother, who was tweeting “fashion not fascism.” Ms. Coulter reached out to Atencio and although two women had never met, on October 14, 2016 they used Twitter to spread the word that they would boycott Trump products and the #GrabYourWallet hashtag was introduced. They started out with a short list of retailers selling Trump merchandise. The purpose of the boycott was to channel the consumer power of women and encourage retailers make ethical decisions about the merchandise they offer.
#GrabYourWallet is updated frequently advising users where not to shop, where to shop and gives explanations for these decisions. Scripts are provided for people who want to contact companies to request they drop Trump products.
Shannon Coulter was born in Indiana, went to Penn State for a degree in Journalism and presently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She operates her marketing agency DoubleKnown, which assists companies with their email outreach and runs #GrabYourWallet in her spare time. There are some volunteers who also help with the site. Ms. Coulter is not profiting from #GrabYourWallet nor is she associated with the sites by the same name that sell t-shirts, stickers, buttons, etc. Coulter does not accept money from companies or donations.
#GrabYourWallet continues to attract more followers with each scandal and controversy coming out of the White House. The immigration ban brought many new people to the site. It is also attracting negative attention from Trump supporters who have threatened her.
Wegmans Food Store is on the boycott list for selling Trump wine. One of our Indivisible Chester County members talked to the manager of the King of Prussia Wegmans and found out that none of the stores in PA are selling Trump wine. The wine is only sold in Virginia. Wegmans has a policy of working with suppliers near its stores. In 2008 the grocer contracted to sell wine from the Kluge Estate Winery and Vineyard. Donald Trump bought the winery in 2011 and gave it to his son Eric.
Wegmans issued this statement in February concerning the boycott of Trump wine: “Our role as a retailer is to offer choice to our customers. For various reasons, we are sometimes asked to stop selling a product. Our response is always the same, no matter the product: How a product performs is our single measure for what stays on our shelves and what goes. Individual shoppers who feel strongly about an issue demonstrate their convictions by refusing to buy a product. When enough people do the same, and sales of a product drop precipitously, we stop selling that product in favor of one that’s in greater demand.”
Ms Coulter has also been accused of unfairly targeting Ivanka Trump in her boycott. Ms Coulter finds this puzzling since Ivanka is in her father’s inner circle of advisors, sitting in on meetings with heads of state to gain favors for her personal business and using televised campaign events to promote her fashions. Examples of her online promotions from the RNC Convention include this Tweet and her brand’s website. Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Trump, said on Fox and Friends, “Go buy Ivanka’s stuff is what I would tell you. I’m going to give a free commercial here. Go buy it today, everybody.” Viewers did just that, Ivanka’s sales increased by 219% from the day before.
If you or someone in your sphere of influence is looking for an ethical way to get rid of “Ivanka’s stuff” Make America Rational Again, (MARA) is another option. They are collecting Ivanka Trump fashions, reducing them to post-consumer yarn, using it to create new fabric for 100% American made jumpsuits. The re-purposed fabric will retain some of the original dye creating a multi-color product. The Special Edition Jumpsuits will be auctioned off to the highest bidder. All proceeds will go to support organizations fighting for a fair wages.
President Trump campaigned on American-made and American jobs. MARA is a way to protest against Trump brand products which are made over seas by workers who are subjected to horrible working conditions, long hours and labor abuses. Although the Trump brand projects the image of luxury their fashions are poorly made and sold in some discount stores. Lately they are turning up in Goodwills and ReUzits.
MARA is taking donations through the end of July. You can send them to:
The Rational Dress Society
P.O. Box 50724
Los Angeles, CA 90042
MARA is also looking for organizations that would like to serve as drop-off centers. You can find more information on their website ( https://www.jumpsu.it/mara/ )