Two popular boutique gyms are under fire after it was reported that their chairman would be hosting a fundraiser for Donald Trump.
On Wednesday afternoon, #BoycottEquinox and #BoycottSoulCycle began trending on Twitter after reports that Stephen Ross, founder and chairman of The Related Companies (which owns both brands), would be putting on a re-election fundraiser for Trump. According to the Washington Post, the fundraiser will take place at Ross's mansion in the Hamptons, and donors will be paying anywhere from $5,600 and $250,000 to attend. Some of the higher-paying donors, the outlet reported, would be able to interact and take photos with Trump.
As the news picked up, customers voiced their disapproval of Ross's fundraiser, with many vowing to cancel their memberships. Among those who spoke out were Chrissy Teigen, Sophia Bush, Prabal Gurung, and Billy Eichner.
the gym is my personal hell but if you're a member of Equinox perhaps it is time to say peace(out)-inox ayyyyy I'm still sick yes but fuck equinox https://t.co/SJBsBNXT8Q— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) August 7, 2019
Just contacted @Equinox to cancel my membership after many years. Money talks, especially with these monsters. If it’s too inconvenient for u to trade one LUXURY GYM for another, then you should be ashamed. (No disrespect to the many wonderful employees at my local Equinox). Bye!— billy eichner (@billyeichner) August 7, 2019
I am in complete shock. I had no idea they owned @Equinox @soulcycle In these turbulent times when we know that white supremacy & domestic terrorism are inspired by Trump’s ugly rhetoric & racism, to openly support & fundraise is an indication of one’s integrity. Appalled. https://t.co/6Dy0pbt4Ai— Prabal Gurung (@prabalgurung) August 7, 2019
Please join me in expressing to @equinox the deep sense of BETRAYAL their members feel about this fundraiser for Donald Trump and his racist and homophobic policies and administration. You can email them as I have by going to firstname.lastname@example.org https://t.co/0BHTqT4IWl— Wilson Cruz (@wcruz73) August 7, 2019
Sorry @soulcycle ... you can’t peddle “inspiration” in your classes and have an owner funding hate and racism in the back room. Byyyeeeeeeeeeee— conrad ricamora (@conradricamora) August 7, 2019
Equinox, SoulCycle Owner to Host Trump Fundraiser in Hamptons https://t.co/4TdZhMvRuW
Equinox and SoulCycle released a statement, saying they don't have "anything to do with the event later this week and do not support it," emphasizing that Ross is a "passive partner" in the businesses.
"As is consistent with our policies, no company profits are used to fund politicians," the statement read. "We are committed to all our members and the communities we live in. We believe in tolerance and equality, and will always stay true to those values. Mr. Ross is a passive investor and is not involved in the management of either business."
BREAKING: Equinox/SoulCycle have released a statement.— Zach Stafford (@ZachStafford) August 7, 2019
They defend their pro-LGBTQ stance and say Stephen Ross is a “passive partner” pic.twitter.com/cJ5KY04jxL
Ross is also owner of the Miami Dolphins, leading the team's wide receiver Kenny Stills to call him out on Twitter.