If you’ve been anywhere on social media this week, you’ve probably seen the controversy over the new Starbucks winter season coffee cups. While previously featuring snowflakes and holiday ornaments on their cups, Starbucks recently changed to a solid red color. Some Christians took to Twitter and other social media platforms to complain that this was a deliberate decision by Starbucks to cut Christmas out of their marketing platform, thus perpetuating the so-called “War on Christmas.”
While the vast majority of posts about the Starbucks cups have been calling the outrage silly (including many Christians themselves), it seems the discussion is still not over. Major Presidential candidate frontrunner Donald Trump recently hopped on board with the Christians offended by Starbucks’ decision to ostensibly cut Jesus out of the Holiday season, even calling for a boycott of the company.
According to Fox News, Donald Trump spoke to a group of a few thousand supporters at a pre-debate rally in Springfield, Illinois, and brought up the Starbucks cups.
“Did you read about Starbucks? No more Merry Christmas on Starbucks,” said Donald Trump. “Maybe we should boycott Starbucks. I don’t know.”
Some people have criticized Donald Trump for deliberately appealing to conservative Christian voters by telling them what they want to hear without real conviction. While Donald Trump recently brought out his Bible during a speech to prove his Christian faith, the issue of the Starbucks cup does raise questions about Donald Trump’s intentions.
After suggesting the boycott of Starbucks, Trump admitted, “Seriously, I don’t care [about the Starbucks cups].”
Donald Trump also said that one of the buildings he owns has a Starbucks in it, and that he would be cancelling that partnership right away — but continued to admit that it didn’t really matter much to him.
“That’s the end of that lease, but who cares?” he said.
Despite the candidate’s apparent apathy, this isn’t the first time Donald Trump has joined Christians in expressing contempt for businesses that replace messages like “Merry Christmas” with phrases like “Happy Holidays.”
“If I become president, we’re all going to be saying, ‘Merry Christmas’ again. That I can tell you,” Donald Trump promised.
The few who were sincerely offended over the new Starbucks cups lacking any Christmas imagery were first rallied by infamous internet pastor Joshua Feuerstein, according to USA Today. Notorious for claiming that an increasingly secular United States continues to discriminate against Christianity, Feuerstein made a video accusing Starbucks of contributing to the war on his religion.
“Do you realize that Starbucks wanted to take Christ and Christmas off of their brand-new cups?” he said. “That’s why they’re just plain red.”
Joshua even went on CNN to discuss the Starbucks cups.
Meanwhile, Starbucks has defended itself by saying the new cup designs are simply intended to be a bold new minimalist design.
“Starbucks has become a place of sanctuary during the holidays,” said Jeffrey Fields, vice president of Starbucks design. “We’re embracing the simplicity and the quietness of it. It’s more open way to usher in the holiday.”
Not only that, but Starbucks never featured the words Merry Christmas on their cups, like Donald Trump implied when he said “No more Merry Christmas on Starbucks.”
Do you agree with Donald Trump and Joshua Feuerstein?
Similar to Donald Trump and his half-hearted rally for a boycott, another group of Christians recently called for a wide scale boycott of the American Girl company for featuring a gay couple in their magazine. Read more about that here.
[Donald Trump photo by Spencer Platt / Getty Images, cup photo courtesy of Starbucks]