In the wake of his weak response to last weekend’s white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, VA, a number of charitable organizations have announced they will not be holding fundraisers at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort. The latest such organization is the Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society.
— Palm Beach Zoo (@PalmBeachZoo) August 20, 2017
The zoo’s CEO & President, Andrew Aiken, said that he believed the decision was necessary in order to ensure that the zoo’s mission remains free from distractions.
‘We have an unyielding commitment to inspire people to act on behalf of wildlife and the natural world. After thoughtful consideration by Zoo leadership, we have decided it is important that we not allow distractions to deter us from our mission and culture.
‘It is critical that the focus of this special night remains on saving species and raising awareness and money for the hundreds of animals, many of them endangered, in our care.’
While not the largest organization to pull out from Mar-a-Lago, it certainly isn’t the smallest, either. Their statement noted that their fundraising gala is normally attended by about 400 people. The loss of the zoo’s business represents another blow to Trump’s signature resort. As of right now, nine organizations have announced that they will not be doing business at the Florida resort.
The fallout comes in the wake of Trump’s decision to defend those who marched with white supremacists during the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville. While Trump has made more than his share of controversial announcements in the past, this one seems to be the final straw for many people. Regardless of one’s feelings on Trump’s policies, it is becoming apparent that Trump’s brand is simply too controversial for some charities to be associated with.
During the campaign, there was some speculation that Trump was running as a means of enriching his brand. He certainly took plenty of opportunities to plug his various businesses. However, Trump is learning why so many CEOs try to refrain from making political statements. It is simply too easy to alienate people. Of course, in Trump’s case, he took things a step further when he defended white supremacists. By the time his presidency is over, Trump’s brand may be too toxic to endure.
Featured image via Getty Images.