Target CEO Falsely Claims Store Never Sold Trans Merchandise Targeting Kids


Julianna Frieman Contributor
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Target CEO Brian Cornell falsely claimed Wednesday that the store never sold transgender-friendly bathing suits targeting children in an interview on CNBC.

CNBC anchor Becky Quick asked Cornell to comment on Target’s “transgender bathing suits” and its partnership with a “devil-worshipper” designer.

“Well, I think you and I both know those weren’t true,” Cornell said.

“I’ve seen natural disasters. We have seen the impact of COVID leading into the pandemic. Some of the violence that took place after George Floyd’s murder,” Cornell said. “But I would tell you that what I saw back in May is the first time since I’ve been in this job where I had store team members saying it’s not safe to come to work.”

Despite denying the existence of transgender swimsuits marketed to kids, the Target CEO said there was “very aggressive behavior at store level,” claiming that products were destroyed, employees were personally threatened or yelled at, and people threatened to “light product on fire in the store.” Cornell said changes were made to keep staff safe, such as moving the location of LGBT merchandise.

“I knew personally, this was not going to be well received, but we had to prioritize the safety of the team,” the CEO said. (RELATED: ‘A Very Hard Day’: Target CEO Bemoans Backlash, Commits To Standing By LGBTQ community)

Target reported lowered sales and profit expectations for the first time in six years in August following backlash over the release of LGBT products for children. The retail giant released youth bathing suits marketed as “trans-friendly” with “tuck-friendly construction” in May.

“We’ve been celebrating heritage moments like Pride for over a decade now. We’ve never seen that kind of response.”