Celebs, activists boycotting Equinox, SoulCycle over owner's fundraiser for Trump

Ari Perilstein  Getty Images

Ari Perilstein Getty Images

Stephen Ross, chairman and founder of real estate development company The Related Cos., which owns Equinox and SoulCycle, is throwing the Trump fundraiser on Friday at Ross' house in the Hamptons. In a tweet, Stills questioned how Ross could justify his support for Trump when his nonprofit, Ross Initiative for Sports Equality, says part of its mission is to end racial discrimination.

The Trump campaign has not responded to CNN's request for comment. Equinox issued a statement, which echoed SoulCycle's point that company profits aren't used to fund politicians and that Ross is "a passive investor". We are committed to all our members and communities we live in.

A pair of high-dollar fundraisers scheduled for Friday in the Hamptons are expected to raise about $10 million for President Trump's reelection and the Republican Party, GOP officials said Thursday, despite pressure from those boycotting the businesses of one of the hosts of the fundraisers.

Shortly after Mr. Trump's election, Stephen M. Ross tried to take over Ladder Capital, one of Mr. Trump's biggest creditors, which also holds a mortgage on Trump Tower.

"We joined this gym because we believed it shared our values".

The real crisis comes because of the fact that Ross is chairman and majority owner of Related Companies, the parent company of Equinox and SoulCycle.

Efforts to reach Ross through The Related Companies on Wednesday were not successful.

Ross, like many billionaires (except the beneficiary of the upcoming fundraiser) is not in the public eye much. We believed it was a safe space for people like us.

The gay and transgender community are hardest hit, apparently. Others cited Trump's rants against immigrants and people of color who have criticized him.

Stills, who has been kneeling during the national anthem since 2016, did so again before Thursday's game.

According to the Washington Post, tickets for the event will cost $100,000 (£82,320) for lunch, and $250,000 for a package that includes a roundtable discussion with Trump.

Unlike other presidents, Mr. Trump has refused to divest himself from his business holdings, and he is not legally required to do so. In a sign that the uproar may not be limited to boycott threats on Twitter, Equinox was added to a list of companies to boycott by Shannon Coulter, a self-described consumer advocate who manages Grab Your Wallet, a protest group that targets companies that support the Trump administration. Most recently, he donated thousands to the Republican National Committee; the Democratic Party of Virginia; candidates in NY, where his company is headquartered; and Florida, where the Miami Dolphins are based, according to Federal Election Commission data.