Washington U. drops partnership with Target over anti-gay donation

Thu. August 26, 2010 3:23 PM by GoPride.com News Staff

Bulls-eye remains on Target following its $150,000 donation to fund anti-gay politics

St. Louis, Missouri - Washington University has cancelled a back to school shopping event with Target because the retailer's controversial donation to fund anti-gay politics could make LGBT students feel unwelcome.

Student Life, the university's student newspaper, reports W.U. administration opted to cancel the Target After-Hours Shopping Event, a nationwide program where Target keeps various stores open after hours and provides transportation to college freshmen to shop.

"We need to walk the walk as well as talk the talk," Jill Carnaghi, the university's associate vice chancellor for student affairs, told the student newspaper.

Washington University is one of 19 college campuses to receive the highest ranking from Campus Pride, an LGBT advocacy group, for having gay-friendly policies and programs.

Target remains under fire from LGBT advocacy groups following its $150,000 donation to a right-wing political action committee (PAC) known as Minnesota Forward, which in turn bought television ads for Minnesota Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer. 

Emmer is seen as a social conservative and opposes same-sex marriage.

Despite protests and meetings with HRC, the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, Target has said it would take no corrective actions to repair the harm caused by the contribution. 

A Facebook group urging people to boycott Target currently has over 70,000 fans.

Best Buy also gave $100,000 to the same right-wing PAC.