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Trump calls for Goodyear boycott, claiming the tire company banned MAGA hats on employees

Goodyear in a Wednesday statement said that it does not permit any sort of political activity in the workplace.

Updated: August 19, 2020 - 6:22pm

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President Trump on Wednesday urged American's to boycott Goodyear tires, after the publication of a photo that appears to show employees cannot wear such apparel as "Blue Lives Matter" clothing or MAGA hats. 

"Don’t buy GOODYEAR TIRES - They announced a BAN ON MAGA HATS. Get better tires for far less! (This is what the Radical Left Democrats do. Two can play the same game, and we have to start playing it now!)," Trump tweeted.

The president called for the boycott after seeing the photo that appears to show a meeting slide that listed "Blue Lives Matter," "All Lives Matter," "MAGA Attire" and "Political Affiliated Slogans or Material" as "unacceptable" but categorized "Black Lives Matter" and "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Transgender Pride" as "acceptable."

Kansas TV station WIBW on Tuesday reported that the worker who took the photo said the slide was shown at a Topeka plant by an area manager and was provided by Goodyear's corporate office.

The station also said that the slide was shown at diversity training.

"If someone wants to wear a BLM shirt in here, then cool. I'm not going to get offended about it. But at the same time, if someone's not going to be able to wear something that is politically based, even in the farthest stretch of the imagination, that's discriminatory," said the employee, according to WIBW. "If we're talking about equality, then it needs to be equality. If not, it's discrimination."

Goodyear on Wednesday denied that the slide came from its corporate office and that it was part of a diversity training course. 

The company, in a statement, also affirmed its commitment to supporting the police and "equality" and said that it does not permit any sort of political activity in the workplace.

"First, the visual in question was not created or distributed by Goodyear corporate, nor was it part of a diversity training class. To be clear on our longstanding corporate policy, Goodyear has zero tolerance for any forms of harassment or discrimination," according to the company statement.

"To enable a work environment free of those, we ask that associates refrain from workplace expressions in support of political campaigning for any candidate or political party, as well as similar forms of advocacy that fall outside the scope of racial justice and equity issues."

During a press briefing Wednesday, a reporter asked White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany whether the presidential limo – known as "the beast" – will continue to be fitted with Goodyear tires.

McEnany declined to answer the question.

"I'm not going to comment on security matters," she said.

"So, Goodyear needs to come out and clarify their policy," McEnany said later during the briefing. She said the company's statement "failed to clarify their policy."

"What happened is there was an image that was put out that showed that certain speech was acceptable, Black Lives Matter insignia for instance," she said. "But what was not allowed was Blue Lives Matter, what was not allowed was MAGA hats, what was clearly targeted was a certain ideology. They have not denied that that image was presented at one of their facilities." McEnany said. 

"They came out and said 'equity issues.' As far as I'm concerned Blue Lives Matter is an equity issue," McEnany also said, while calling for the Goodyear to recognize Blue Lives Matter as such an issue.

 

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