In defense of the SoulCycle boycott

Now, one could argue that the wrath directed at Equinox has been a bit much. Early reports suggested that Ross’ empire, Related Companies, was the majority owner of the chain. But according to Dan Primack of Axios, that’s no longer true. Related purchased Equinox—which in turn bought SoulCycle—in 2005. But since then, it has “been diluted via new Equinox share sales and some secondary sales by Related itself,” so that Related now owns only a minority stake in the chains. Meanwhile, SoulCycle has described Ross as a “passive investor,” meaning he has no actual management role. It’s not even clear whether he’s currently receiving any profits or dividends. The connection between your spin membership and Trump’s fundraising seems, in the end, to be a bit attenuated.

But on the other hand, who cares? Ross could stand to profit if Equinox is ever sold or manages to have an IPO. And if LGBTQ customers don’t want to pay $200 or so a month for a gym part-owned by a guy trying to re-elect a president who is hostile to their rights, they shouldn’t. There are lots of places, after all, to go ride a stationary bike. This kind of Twitter activism might seem desultory and silly. But it’s a reasonable way to enforce the social and political norms people claim to hold dear. Don’t mock it, even if you don’t want to bother with it.

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