A local station in Kansas this week ran a report about a Goodyear diversity training slideshow in which workers were told to avoid attire that says, among other things, "Make America Great Again." The company distanced itself yesterday from the image, explaining in a statement that "the visual in question was not created or distributed by Goodyear corporate, nor was it part of a diversity training."
Nevertheless, Donald Trump yesterday publicly called on his followers to boycott the American company, and as part of the same tweet, the president criticized the quality of Goodyear tires.
Soon after, from the podium in the White House press briefing room, Trump said he's prepared to remove Goodyear tires from the presidential limousine, while again urging American consumers not to buy the company's products. But this was the presidential line that struck me as particularly amazing:
"I would be very much in favor if people don't want to buy [from Goodyear]. And you know what? They'll be able to get a good job.... You'll be able to get another good jobs. I think it's disgraceful that they did this."
In context, Trump seemed to be saying that his preferred boycott may cost Goodyear employees their jobs -- the company employs 60,000 workers just in Ohio -- but he doesn't believe it should matter too much, since they'll just go work somewhere else.
The president made the declaration despite the fact that the nation has had double-digit unemployment rate for four consecutive months -- a first in the United States since the Great Depression.
Remember, as far as Goodyear's corporate office is concerned, the slide presentation in Kansas -- the one that led the president to use his office to seek vengeance against the company -- wasn't actually "created or distributed" by Goodyear.
For his part, Trump's 2020 rival wasn't pleased.
"Goodyear employs thousands of American workers, including in Ohio where it is headquartered. To President Trump, those workers and their jobs aren't a source of pride, just collateral damage in yet another one of his political attacks," Joe Biden said in a statement. "President Trump doesn't have a clue about the dignity and worth that comes with good-paying union jobs at places like Goodyear -- jobs that can support a family and sustain a community."
The Democratic nominee added that the Republican is "getting distracted by petty political grievances instead of doing his job and stopping the virus."