The Rogers Family Flew To Florida To Hang Out With Trump & Posted It On Instagram….. Then Deleted It….. Cue The Backlash

In one of the most tone deaf things that I have seen lately, Suzanne Rogers, the wife of Rogers Communications and Blue Jays chairman Edward S. Rogers posted an Instagram story that included a picture of her family with former President of the United States Donald Trump over the weekend. The photo was apparently taken at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida. This Instagram story was then deleted. But not before it was captured by a few people, including Cultmtl and blogTO who posted it for all to see.

So, let’s count the #Fails here:

  1. The Rogers family travelled outside of Canada during a global pandemic when a lot of Canadians can’t or have decided not to do so. Because depending on where in Canada you live, you might be under a stay at home order (Ontario for example is and as far as I know the Rogers family lives in Ontario). And travel outside the country is only for “essential” purposes And you have to wonder if they would have adhered to the quarantine rules that Canada has when they returned to Canada.
  2. They decided to do this at a time where Rogers is facing significant blowback from their plan to buy Shaw Communications and likely could use a few friends on that front.
  3. Donald Trump isn’t liked by a whole lot of people right now. So if you’re associated with him in any way, that’s not going end well for you.

This has created significant backlash online today. Here’s some examples:

This last tweet also brings up another part of the blowback. Ryerson University who has an association with Suzanne Rogers did their own #fail regarding this which started with posting this:

The Ryerson School of Fashion also posted a statement inviting “Suzanne Rogers to enter into a dialogue with our faculty, staff and students to discuss the impact that Trump and his community has had on further harming members of the fashion industry who are low income, Black, brown, Asian, disabled, Indigenous, trans, queer, and/or part of other systemically marginalized communities.”

Now that’s all good. But they then dropped themselves in it by doing this:

The post was later removed and replaced with a message from Ryerson University which includes the following: “We do not believe social media is the appropriate platform to judge the actions of others.” It also goes on to say, “We will be respectful of differing viewpoints,” which did little to quell the ire, especially among those associated with the Ryerson School of Fashion.

And what makes it worse for Ryerson is this:

Ben Barry, the Ryerson School of Fashion’s Chair and Associate Professor of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, shot back on Instagram Stories with a message that the Ryerson University statement “are Ryerson’s words not mine or our school,” referring to the School of Fashion.

And now Ryerson is facing as much ire as the Rogers family is. And some of it is clearly coming from inside Ryerson.

I am going to be very interested to see how Rogers the telco, and the Rogers family respond to this self inflicted gunshot wound to the foot. Because I think this may actually be something that sticks and they have to respond to as the optics of this situation are pretty bad.

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