Fans of Chip and Joanna Gaines are making some strong demands as the culture war reaches a fever pitch. Though “silence is violence” has always been the rallying cry for progressives, it seems now conservatives are embracing a similar stance when it comes to the multi-millionaire renovation experts.
In 2017, the couple debuted their Hearth & Hand with Magnolia home product line at Target. It’s been massively successful ever since. This partnership inspired fans of the Christian couple to demand they cut ties with the retailer.
They say if Chip and Jo don’t cut ties with Target, or at the very least denounce the company’s over-the-top pride collection for 2023, they are in effect saying they condone it. And those fans? They’re not happy about it.
Pride month collections featured front and center at Target locations nationwide are nothing new. But this year things are a little different, which has in turn prompted a strong response from consumers.
First, some of the items being advertised go beyond run-of-the mill pride flag tank tops. Some of the most controversial items for sale were from a collection of “chest binders” and “tuck-friendly” female swimwear specifically targeted to anyone who identified as transgender — items positioned in areas of the store clearly visible to shoppers of all ages.
There are also baby-sized items with pride messages, a board book called “Bye Bye Binary,” and even rainbow merchandise for pets. And that’s not all.
Another item of concern for Target customers is the background of one pride collection designer. Erik Carnell partnered with the retailer to make a mini messenger bag with the slogan “We Belong Everywhere,” a tote bag with the phrase “Too Queer For Here,” and a sweatshirt with “Cure Transphobia, Not Trans People” to sell in Target’s pride collection this year.
Boycott advocates were furious to discover that Carnell’s Etsy shop also features designs that say, “Satan Respects Pronouns” and “Trans Witches For Abortion,” per a previous Daily Wire report.
Through this all Chip and Joanna have remained silent even as the boycott gains traction. Target reported a $6 billion decrease in its market capitalization since the controversy began. This, coupled with the successful boycott of Bud Light for partnering with trans activist Dylan Mulvaney, has conservatives demanding the Gaineses to take a side.
Joanna Gaines has comments turned off on Instagram, though it’s unclear exactly when or why she made that change. This has fans flocking to Chip Gaines’s Instagram page and to their Magnolia page to demand answers.
“As a father of small children, I am appalled that you would continue to be associated with [Target],” one commenter wrote. “Joanna has turned her comments off, which is totally an act of cowardice. Take a stand. You can take the financial loss. God will bless you 10 fold. Stand up!!!”
“This is a spiritual battle against families! Do the right thing! Doing nothing is speaking volumes,” another person wrote.
“Get out of Target. Please, for the love of children, take a stand,” a third follower echoed.
“SILENCE SPEAKS LOUDLY!! Especially when it comes to the indoctrination and sexualization of our children… and the glorification of Satan. Very disappointed,” another person said. “Money is not everything… morality, character and ethics are of true value. My money counts and I will not be spending it in Target, nor anyone who does not speak up and out!”
There were plenty of people in the comments who pointed out how the Gaineses partnered with Target long after the company became controversial for conservatives. They argued that the retailer made its position known in April of 2016 when it changed its bathroom policy from having female-only bathrooms and male-only bathrooms to a “gender-inclusive” policy. Since Chip and Joanna launched their collection a full year later, these followers claim there’s little chance of them cutting ties now.
This is not the first time the Gaineses got embroiled in controversy, though it is the first time they angered their conservative fans.
Leftist critics tried to cancel the Gaineses for attending a church that promoted traditional marriage between one man and one woman. BuzzFeed published an investigation into Antioch Community Church and its pastor, Jimmy Seibert, after he referred to the Gaineses as his “good friends” in 2016.
“This is a clear biblical admonition. So if someone were to say, ‘Marriage is defined in a different way,’ let me just say: They are wrong,” Seibert said in his sermon following the Obergefell v. Hodges decision which mandated all states to recognize same-sex marriage. “God defined marriage, not you and I. God defined masculine and feminine, male and female, not you and I.”
In that situation, the Gaineses addressed the cancel mob with a vague statement.
“Joanna and I have personal convictions,” Chip wrote in a now-deleted blog post. “One of them is this: we care about you for the simple fact that you are a person, our neighbor on planet earth. It’s not about what color your skin is, how much money you have in the bank, your political affiliation, sexual orientation, gender, nationality or faith.”
Joanna referenced that scandal and accusations of racism during a 2021 interview. “The accusations that get thrown at you, like you’re a racist or you don’t like people in the LGBTQ community, that’s the stuff that really eats my lunch — because it’s so far from who we really are,” the biracial mom of five said.
The Gaineses got into hot water again for allegedly donating $1,000 to Chip’s sister, Shannon Braun, who was running for her local school board with an anti-CRT campaign.
Despite these situations, the Gaineses have remained relatively uncontroversial and appear to have both conservative and progressive fans. The latest Target scandal could be the catalyst to make a more definitive statement and finally admit which side they’re really on.