Coca-Cola deleted mentions of donations the company had made to Black Lives Matter on a web page related to social justice in relation to BLM’s “voting education” initiatives.
The removed references were noticed by Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who made note of the change on his X account, saying the brand had been “caught red handed.”
“CocaCola deletes its support for BLM. One screenshot is of CocaCola‘s website before BLM supported Hamas parachuting into a concert to kill Israeli civilians. The other is from this morning. Editing your website is not enough. Americans DEMAND an apology,” the senator wrote.
A screenshot before the removal showed Coca-Cola had written that “the brand [Sprite] also donated $500,000 to the Black Lives Matter Global Network to support the group’s voting education efforts and their February 2021 Black Future Month program to empower the next generation of Black youths.”
That factoid had since been removed.
Coca-Cola did not remove its quote from brand lead Aaliyah Shafiq: “We’re in this for the long haul,” Shafiq said. “Lasting change will not happen overnight, so we’re committed to continuing to amplify the voices and efforts of our community, to listen and learn, and to actively help create a better shared future for America.”
BLM has faced criticism after multiple chapters of the organization showed support for the Palestinian government, most notably BLM Chicago, which shared an imagine of a paraglider with a Palestinian flag attached to a parachute.
The image has since been deleted but was captured by the Post Millennial.
The founder of BLM Los Angeles also shared a post on Instagram that said “Free Palestine.”
Coca-Cola made a separate move in May 2023 that appeared to signal a desire to disconnect from controversial issues. Shareholders rejected a proposal by a nonprofit to conduct a survey on how abortion restrictions may have impacted the company’s business in Republican states.
The proposal claimed that women who don’t have access to abortion are more likely to leave the workforce, but the soda giant rejected the need for greater research, saying its own “robust risk management processes” are able to address any such concerns.
87% of controlling shares in the company voting against the idea.
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