Romper

Donald Trump May Boycott Starbucks Over Red Cups, But What's Really His Motive?

We've always known that we don't have much in common with Donald Trump. We don't all have billions of dollars and a tuff of fluffy orange marshmallow hair that people mock daily. (Well, unless you're Ronald McDonald.) And that's just the start of it — bring Trump's politics into play, and there are many, many more in this country who feel at odds with the former Apprentice host. But, on Monday, the GOP presidential candidate gave us a reason to never be able to relate to him again. Because Trump might boycott Starbucks. What's next, Trump? War against Chipotle, YouTube news blooper supercuts, my cat, and everything else I hold near and dear to my heart?!

But, yes, the Donald committed millennial sin by announcing his desire to reject the coffee chain at a rally in Springfield, Illinois. But why? Not over the fact that the Pumpkin Spice Latte is not a year-long offering, but because Starbucks' holiday cups aren't spirited enough. It's something Christian evangelists have been complaining about in the past week, calling it a "war on Christmas." (“I’m officially banning Starbucks from my life,” one Facebook user, a pastor, said, according to The New York Post.)

Whereas in recent years, the coffee chain's red cups hinted at Christmas traditions — donning ornaments or Christmas carol singers — Starbucks chose a simple design that favors no holiday at all. It's something that makes sense in a diversifying U.S. (even if, according to a 2014 Pew study, the country is still 78 percent Christian), but some are hoping to harken back to the old days, when the cups looked like this:

And that, apparently, includes Trump, who told the crowd at his rally:

Did you read about Starbucks? No more Merry Christmas on Starbucks ... Maybe we should boycott Starbucks. I don't know. seriously, I don't care. 

But Trump knows his voters might. Does the mogul really care that the cups have become less Christmas-driven? (A Starbucks spokesperson responded to Romper's request for comment by calling the current cups a "blank canvas" that customers can decorate: "Our core values as a company are to create a culture of belonging, inclusion and diversity. Each year during the holidays we aim to bring our customers an experience that inspires the spirit of the season and we will continue to embrace and welcome customers from all backgrounds and religions in our stores around the world.")

We'll never know unless we're in that orange head of his, but it is a convenient stance to take during a time when Trump is attempting to court the Christian right.  While campaigning in Iowa, Trump spoke to conservative radio hosts, and brought along a Bible ("Nobody believes this," he said at the time, "what went wrong?"), even though his refusal to quote a verse in the book while espousing its virtues hasn't won him over many fans. (Oops.) Nor, frankly, has his previous pro-choice stance, which he has since reversed. 

Still, polls from early September showed him doing well with evangelicals, and it doesn't hurt that he's making Christmas one of his political platforms. Said Trump at the rally Monday:

If I become president, we're all going to be saying, 'Merry Christmas' again. That I can tell you.

Of course, I could really get all conspiracy theorist on this and just claim boycotting Starbucks is Trump's way of keeping GOP foe Ben Carson sleepy. 

Images: Spencer Platt/Getty; Starbucks (2)