On Drawing Circles
Posted: Nov 09 2016
We know. We know. Getting political is dangerous for a brand. Many say that there should be a bright line between business and politics and we understand that point of view. Some things are subjective and it’s not impossible to see where the other side is coming from. Should the highest marginal tax rate be 39.6% or 42%?? We don’t know and while we may have an opinion, it probably isn’t in anyone’s best interest for us to share. Plus, it’s likely no one would care what we think. Nor should they in all reality.
That being said, this election was different. In a lot of ways. To our chagrin, we saw how anger...no, strike that. We saw how rage and some would say, blind hatred drowned out reasoned thought. We saw how divisiveness and exclusion beat out unity and inclusion. We saw how the most primitive and violent of our emotions subdued the “Better Angels of our Nature”.
As you might expect, the majority of us at Coeur hoped to see a female president. After all, we’re a woman-owned company who sells women’s products. More importantly, the idea of everyone being “Better Together” resonated with us. In a big way. After all, it’s what we’re all about.
Now, to be clear, we know that there are things in our country that need to be re-built. Some from the ground up. We also know that we are all imperfect beings and no one side has a monopoly on truth or good ideas. So, our sadness stems not as much from “what happened”, but rather from the “how it happened”. We’re concerned that distrust, violence, and the quick classification of someone being either “one of us” or “one of them”, may do permanent damage to the country we love. That last point is particularly disturbing to us. After all, once drawn, circles are hard to enlarge. Rather, they tend to get drawn smaller and smaller with more people being on the outside than in.
We know that endurance sports is a dot in the world. A distraction (albeit a fun and healthy one) to the big issues in life. Even so, we hope that the behaviors that we celebrate as a company and the concepts that we embrace have not seen their last days.
Day in and day out, we see all of you encouraging others to get out and do something positive. Instead of saying “This is our sport and you’re not invited”, you say…”Come on. Join us.” Instead of blaming others when you lose, you come back, cheer on the finishers and say “I’ll do better next time”. Instead of saying someone is too big, too slow, or too different to be in our club, you acknowledge that everyone started somewhere and that our differences are what make life and sport interesting. In other words, when you start to draw a circle, you make sure to leave it open so that it can be enlarged.
And that’s why after a brief period of being down, we’re going to pick ourselves up and continue to do our thing. We’re going to make incredible clothes and we’re going to continue to share a message of inclusion wherever we go. We hope that you’ll join us.
Happy Training and Racing,
Your Friends at Coeur