Starbucks is getting political again: The coffee giant dropped big bucks to place full-page ads in both the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal today. The politically charged ads referencing the presidential election and current political climate are clearly decrying the tactics of one Mr. Donald Trump, and yet manage to be impressively vague at the same time.
Here's the full text of the ad:
When you read the headlines. Or turn on the news. When you scroll through your social media feed. Or listen to the candidates. You could easily mistake America as a nation, lost. A people who have severed the common bonds that hold us together — compassion, respect, shared responsibility, a belief in service, a willingness to unite despite our differences.
Today, for just a moment, we wanted to pause and reflect. To go beyond the hatred and vitriol, and see a different story of America.
It's a story that is not bound by party affiliations, or religious beliefs. It's not dependent on living in one zip code over another. It's not left-leaning or right-leaning. It's not about your income or your wealth.
It lives in our small towns, and also in our cities. In the classroom of a teacher who is fighting for the potential in every student. You see it in the volunteer who mentors youth, and in those helping America's veterans successfully transition to civilian life. And in those who work to include, rather than discriminate. You see it in the leader who invests in her community. And in the nurse who treats the elderly with dignity. This is the story we believe in.
This is not about the choice we make every four years. This is about the choices we make every single day.
An accompanying page spouts off a long list of negative traits — nearly all of which have probably been used to describe Trump's campaign at one point or another — alongside their more desirable counterparts. This is basically Starbucks' version of #squadgoals:
.@nytimes ad from @Starbucks today reads like presidential race commentary pic.twitter.com/KgJVntSkJp— Tracy Novick (@TracyNovick) March 24, 2016
While CEO Howard Schultz hasn't yet offered an official endorsement for a candidate this year, it's at least clear who he won't be voting for this November. But the billionaire, who previously supported Barack Obama in both 2008 and 2012, has never been shy about his political views (Starbucks is, after all, one of the food and beverage world's biggest contributors to Democratic candidates and causes), and some have even suggested that Schultz himself ought to run for President.
For now, the businessman seems content to use his company as a gigantic platform on which to project his views. Other politically-charged Starbucks initiatives dreamed up by Schultz include the ill-fated #RaceTogether cup-writing campaign; the holiday red cup controversy that, intentionally or unintentionally, caused a partisan internet explosion; last fall's announcement that it would switch to cage-free eggs; and its vocal support for marriage equality.