New York City’s famous Stonewall Inn announced it will no longer serve some Anheuser-Busch products over the brewer’s contributions to lawmakers allegedly trying to “legalize discrimination,” according to The Associated Press (AP).
The Stonewall Inn’s ban on Anheuser-Busch products initially went into effect Friday and was the result of a pressure campaign orchestrated by activists from Corporate Accountability Action, the AP reported. The campaign, called “Keep Your Pride,” aims to draw attention to companies that have signaled support for pride but also reportedly made contributions to lawmakers deemed anti-LGBTQ by the activists, the AP noted.
The Stonewall Inn’s owners say they won’t serve certain beers at the famous LGBTQ bar during Pride weekend to protest manufacturer Anheuser-Busch’s political contributions to some politicians who have supported anti-LGBTQ legislation. https://t.co/Dqtalz6BeG
— NBC News (@NBCNews) June 21, 2021
Using the National Institute on Money in Politics’ data, the activists claimed Anheuser-Busch donated more than $35,000 to allegedly anti-LGBTQ lawmakers from 2015 to 2020, according to the AP. The Keep Your Pride Campaign also targets AT&T, Coca-Cola, General Motors and NBC Universal, the campaign’s website shows.
Stacy Lentz and Kurt Kelly, the current co-owners of the Stonewall Inn, justified their decision to institute a ban on Anheuser-Busch products in accordance with the Keep Your Pride campaign, the AP reported. “We just felt Stonewall having the platform, the power to do this, it was important to stand up,” Lentz claimed.
In 1969, plain clothed police officers with the New York City Vice Squad Public Morals Division orchestrated a raid on the Stonewall Inn to arrest individuals partaking in homosexual or gender non-conforming behavior, according to the Daily Beast. As officers attempted to arrest and obtain identification of the bar’s patrons, the patrons resisted. Outside, protestors gathered and clashed with police over the course of the next 6 days, resulting in 21 arrests, the Daily Beast noted. No one was killed in the riots, but the Stonewall Inn shut down shortly after, but has since been reopened and declared an LGBTQ+ landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission.
“We really just want Anheuser-Busch to stop donating to lawmakers who are trying to legalize discrimination,” Lentz added. (RELATED: Major Corporations Came Out To Celebrate Pride … Except Not In The Middle East)
In a statement of their own, Anheuser-Busch defended their political contributions and claimed “We support candidates for public office whose policy positions and objectives support investments in our communities, job creation, and industry growth.”
“Together, with our brands, we have a clear role to play in bringing real change and creating an inclusive and equitable world where we cherish and celebrate one another,” the brewing company went on to say in its statement, according to the AP.