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Watch: Jon Stewart UNLEASHES on corporations over greedy Pride 'pinkwashing' & its so SATISFYING

Jon Stewart hosting The Daily Show
Courtesy of The Daily Show/YouTube

If their are two things Jon Stewart hates it's homophobia and hypocrisy.

@politebotanist

Jon Stewart has never been afraid to callout homophobes. While the LGBTQ+ community celebrates Pride month, Jon Stewart is taking this June to celebrate Wrathful Allie Month. The comedian spent time on Monday night’s episode of The Daily Show tearing into businesses that have been a bit too eager to disguise their participation in Corporate Greed Month as support for the LGBTQ+ community.

“Pride Month is, of course, that time of year when corporations get together and financially exploit the decades-long struggle of gay people for acceptance and equality,” Stewart explained. “Remember when you were fired from that bank job after you were outed? Well, Burger King does—with a burger that has two bottom buns!

A burger King ad stating that it's "Time to be proud" over a wavy rainbow background and two Pride Whoppers. On the left, a Top Whopper with a top bun serving as both top and bottom of the burger, and the Bottom Whopper, the same but with bottom buns.

Courtesy of Burger King/Instagram

“Yeah, that’s not a funny make-em-up,” he says about this very real (and since removed) ad from Burger King Austria’s Instagram page.

Stewart does not relent. “Scarred by conversion therapy? Skittles is releasing a colorless version of Skittles!” An ad displaying a greyscale version of the candy shows. The ad zooms in to highlight the justification for the gimmick, a line on the package underneath the logo that reads “Only one rainbow matters during Pride”.

“And then there’s this ad showing a family overcoming a father’s deep conservative values,” Stewart continues. “And as you watch it, try and guess exactly what it is they’re selling.” He plays the ad which is bafflingly somehow how for Oreos.

Stewart plays the 30 second version of the Oreo commercial, the one that would have been played on television. When trying to find it while writing this I found that the full version is an astounding 2 minutes and 57 seconds long. Playing the full nearly 3 minutes would have been a horrible choice for The Daily Show for obvious reasons, but wow! Finding out that Oreo essentially made what is a borderline short film for Pride really does drive home the point Jon Stewart is making.

Anyhow, Stewart then feels it’s finally time to lay into Target. “Target is apparently less proud of Pride this year. But why?” Stewarts feigns ignorance to ask. The corporation has already received plenty of backlash for significantly rolling back their pride collection this year, but Stewart felt they hadn’t had enough.

“But that’s the burden corporations must bear,” he says.” They care almost too much about the human condition, often finding themselves in the crosshairs of ideologues fundamentalists. But they stand by their values, sometimes for a couple of months.”

Stewart then goes on to call out corporations for their cowardice on other issues, including last year when Bud Light ran an ad on TikTok featuring trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney, then retracted the ad and instead tried to win back now irate conservatives with a new commercial in only two short weeks. “The apology gift to the people upset about Budweiser is a Budweiser? Curious,” he points out.

The host does his best to encourage us all to hold on hope. “Don’t be sad,” he says, “for this is only following in a long line of hollow corporate pandering meant to convince you that not only are corporations people, they’re good people, decent people who care about the systemic ills of this great nation.”

Stewart is only pointing out something that many in the LGBTQ+ and other marginalized communities have been saying for years: Corporations cannot define or lead in movements inherently tied to liberation. Stewart also brings up the hypocrisy of corporate participation in the Black Lives Matter movement, highlighting how corporate commitment to diversity is consistently, universally superficial.

Ultimately, this shouldn’t matter in the sense that Pride, and the greater queer liberation movement as a whole, should not care about corporate interest or opinion this month or any other. “Why are we allowing ourselves to get worked up over whether giant multinational corporations are pro-gay or have traditional American values?” he wonders, as all of us should as well. “Because corporations have but one value: shareholder value. That’s all they have.”

Watch the full segment below.

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Rowan Ashley Smith

Rowan Ashley Smith has often been described as "a multi-hyphenate about town." He loves work that connects him to his cultures as a gay, Jewish, multiracial trans man. Before breaking into journalism, the best days of his professional life were spent as a summer camp professional, a librarian, and an HIV prevention specialist. His work has been featured in GO Magazine, pride.com, and The Advocate. In what is left of his free time, Rowan enjoys performing stand up comedy, doing the NYT crossword, and spending time with his two partners, two children, and four cats.

Rowan Ashley Smith has often been described as "a multi-hyphenate about town." He loves work that connects him to his cultures as a gay, Jewish, multiracial trans man. Before breaking into journalism, the best days of his professional life were spent as a summer camp professional, a librarian, and an HIV prevention specialist. His work has been featured in GO Magazine, pride.com, and The Advocate. In what is left of his free time, Rowan enjoys performing stand up comedy, doing the NYT crossword, and spending time with his two partners, two children, and four cats.