Actor and LGBTQ activist Wilson Cruz is demanding Equinox gyms “end its support of Donald Trump” after it was revealed that its chairman, Stephen Ross, plans to host a fundraiser for the president. SoulCycle, which is also owned by Ross, is under fire as well, with many calling for a boycott of both fitness brands. Chrissy Teigen and The Lion King’s Billy Eichner both weighed in.
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
There are a handful of billionaires who own everything and many support Trump. Practically speaking, it’s probably impossible to completely avoid them. But considering @Equinox’s clientele and how they’ve pandered to us, this one feels particularly hypocritical and shameful.— billy eichner (@billyeichner) August 7, 2019
Never thought I’d have to ask this but ....— billy eichner (@billyeichner) August 7, 2019
Do Nazis own Crunch?
Teigen chimed in, “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 f*** equinox.” She added, “oh and f*** soulcycle but I thought that way before this anyhow.”
Teigen then told her followers, “everyone who cancels their equinox and soul cycle memberships, meet me at the library. bring weights.”
On Wednesday afternoon, #BoycottEquinox began to trend on Twitter, with people urging Equinox-goers to cancel their memberships.
Stephen Ross is the majority owner of the parent company of Equinox gyms. He is holding a big Trump fundraiser. Know where your money is going. https://t.co/5t6Yxq8BCm— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) August 7, 2019
The owner of @Equinox and @soulcycle, Stephen Ross, is hosting a private fundraiser for Donald Trump in The Hamptons. The cost to attend is $250,000, which includes lunch and a photo with the White-Supremacist-in-Chief. You better cancel those gym memberships now. #BoycottEquinox— Ryan Knight 🗽 (@ProudResister) August 7, 2019
oh hey @equinox def not thrilled about this news. as a paying member, I do not condone the company being involved with Trump in any way, shape or form. NO. cancel it now. #GrabYourWallet #BoycottEquinox #Boycottsoulcycle https://t.co/sdBLrKYS6C— Hassan Mirza 👨🏾💻 (@Hassanmirza) August 7, 2019
Star Trek: Discovery actor Wilson Cruz started a Change.org petition with the hope of putting an end to the fundraiser.
“We joined this gym because we believed it shared our values. We believed it was a safe space for people like us,” he begins. “We believed that we were supporting a company that was inclusive, accepting and celebrating our diversity and supporting our physical and mental health as a community.”
He continues, “There is NO WAY that we as a community can continue to support this business if you are actively supporting an administration that puts us in danger and works towards treating us like second class citizens, and worse yet, subhuman.
“We don’t understand how this company, which owes its success to its LGBTQ membership especially in its largest markets in California, New York, Miami, Chicago and other big cities around the world thinks it’s appropriate to be tied to this fundraiser,” he concludes.
SoulCycle CEO Melanie Whelan issued a statement on Wednesday, saying the company “in no way endorses the political fundraising event.”
Equinox has also put out a statement on Twitter, saying that the fitness company along with SoulCycle “have nothing to do with the event and do not support it.”
Trump is scheduled to appear at Ross’s event. The Washington Post reports the luncheon is scheduled to take place Friday at the Southampton home of the billionaire New York real estate developer. According to the invite, $100,000 gets a guest a photo opportunity with POTUS and lunch, while $250,000 also includes a roundtable discussion. The price of entry starts at $5,600.
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