Activists are fearlessly taking on some of the biggest corporations in the U.S., calling them out for their ties to President Donald Trump.
A newly launched website called BackersOfHate.org breaks down how nine major corporations are affiliated with the Trump administration and the ways they will gain from the Trump agenda. The website also outlines current company policies that already negatively impact people of color, immigrants, Indigenous communities, and low income populations — similar to the Trump agenda.
“Racism is an industry, and these nine companies are ready to cash in.”
The website launched on April 27, backed by organizations serving immigrants and workers of color. They include the Center for Popular Democracy, Make The Road New York, and a coalition of more than 20 community organizing groups.
“We think it’s really critical to expose what these companies are doing and to demand that they distance themselves from an agenda of hate,” said Daniel Altschuler, director of civic engagement and research for Make The Road New York. “Companies like JP Morgan Chase and Wells Fargo need to clearly state whose side they’re on — are they on the side of the implementers of Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda or are they on the side of immigrants?”
Disney, for instance, is on the list because the company’s CEO Bob Iger is on Trump’s Business Council (along with four other CEOs on BackersOfHate.org), and the company overall has a history of workers’ rights abuses.
JP Morgan Chase is also on the list because company CEO Jamie Dimon sits on Trump’s Business Council. BackersOfHate.org claims the company at large serves to benefit from immigrant detention and the growth of the oil and gas industry under Trump. Dimon, however, recently spoke out against Trump’s immigration policies — though he did not name the president directly — in a letter to shareholders in April.
Four companies on the list also have money in private prisons and immigrant detention centers.
“Racism is an industry, and these nine companies are ready to cash in,” the website reads. “They are the #BackersofHate.”
Research behind the project’s claims was conducted by several of the organizations in the coalition in collaboration with Little Sis, a free online database tracking the intersections between corporations and politics. Each claim about a corporation is backed up by extensive sourcing to help curb possible claims of defamation or mischaracterization.
“We hope the information people gain on this site motivates them to take action.”
“We went through a really rigorous research process to determine what companies would be on this list,” Altschuler says. “We had a research team that identified, fact checked, and vetted every claim we make. All of this information is sourced on the website, and we are exceedingly confident in all the assertions we make on this website.”
The website also allows users to make their voices heard by sending personalized emails to each company’s CEOs and board members, calling for them to distance themselves from the Trump administration and practices that harm marginalized groups.
Organizations involved in the website’s creation are also organizing direct action against the listed corporations, like a recent May Day protest where 500 activists marched to Wells Fargo and JP Morgan Chase’s NYC offices to protest the companies’ ties to Trump.
“It’s really important to expose to the public how these companies are complicit in this political moment,” Altschuler says. “We hope the information people gain on this site motivates them to take action. It’s really critical that these CEOs and board members hear directly from the public on this so they can realize how vital it is to decide whose side they’re on.”