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Target Stores in Utah Evacuated Due to Bomb Threats

Boycott and Bomb Threats Escalate Conflict Surrounding Target’s Pride Collection


Bomb threats against several Target stores in Utah and Ohio forced the evacuation of the Layton Target affecting staff and shoppers. Police officials said that the email containing the bomb threat originated from a bogus email address.

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In addition, a newspaper in Ohio also received the same threatening email that called Target cowards for cowering to pressure over the company’s controversial Pride collection. The email stated that bombs will continue to go off in their stores until Target reinstates the LGBT merchandise.

The incident occurred after Target announced that some items from their Pride collection would be removed due to threats and confrontational behavior displayed by some people. Target Crisis Communications Manager Kayla Castaneda stated that the company had to adjust their plans in response to the volatile circumstances by removing certain items which caused the most controversy. But despite this decision, most of the products that sparked outrage remain available online.


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After a K9 unit was deployed to the Layton Target store, customers and employees were directed to vacate the premises shortly after 1pm. Local law enforcement instructed similar actions in other stores located in Layton, Salt Lake, Taylorsville, and Provo. After receiving the threatening email, news stations disclosed information about possible threats against specific stores to create awareness. Cleveland 19 reported that five Target stores in Northeast Ohio and Pennsylvania were also at risk.

The emailer claimed that they will not be erased and they won’t go quietly. The accusation of being cowards was aimed directly at Target and the company’s readiness to back down. Unfortunately, this has resulted in the inconvenience faced by others, such as the evacuation of one of the biggest retailers in Layton, Utah. These kinds of threats are unacceptable and represent an extreme response to a simple issue.

It is clear that the threat of violence stemming from the Pride collection simply highlights how divided our society is today. The confrontational behavior demonstrated in the face of a company’s decision, however controversial, can amount to violence and requests of violence. It is important to acknowledge this violent behavior and recognize that it won’t solve the issue that is at hand, rather, it aggravates it.

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In the past, Target has faced several boycotts, leading to the company’s decision to discontinue selling gender-based products in response to pressure. As demonstrated, the contemporary market environment is highly political, and decisions made can be scrutinized, with actions like boycott then becoming a tool to express opposition. The boycott strategy is the preferred method by those who oppose the items and the overall message conveyed by the company.

This aggressive behavior is not unique to discrimination against the LGBTQIA+ community but is of particular importance because those of this community experience frequent threats and hate. It is important to note that acceptance of such discrimination should not be tolerated. However, it is equally important to acknowledge that actions such as boycotts, bomb threats, and violent reactions, do not contribute to a resolution and simply create further division.

This perception is reinforced by the fact that in today’s society, when boycotts and other reactions are made, they are quickly propagated through the media, as in the case of the Target store bomb threats. Furthermore, in a world where incitement is instantaneous through social media and other networks, obtaining information is easier than ever, and the need to take immediate action, like boycotting, is greater.

The issue raises concerns around the limits of freedom of speech and how it can be misinterpreted and used to justify extreme actions, like in the case of the Target bomb threats. Our world is growing more polarized, making it difficult for reasonable debates to occur. The solution to combating this issue is to encourage a proper understanding of the issues and not to blame either party.

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The course of action that the individual who made the bomb threats against Target has taken should be addressed, but whether it requires further action from local law enforcement or not, is debatable. What is needed more than anything is reasonable and intelligent discourse on such issues to avoid the same extreme measures being repeated in the future.

It is crucial to encourage and support positive dialogue to incite change. The changes we want to see might not always happen overnight, but we need to find a better way to come to a consensus and respect opposing viewpoints, rather than simply acting on irrational and extreme impulses that only escalate matters.

In conclusion, the recent bomb threats against Target stores highlight the extremes that animosity toward the LGBTQIA+ community can spark in our society. Violence and aggression are never the answer, and in a world that is increasingly polarized, it is essential to recognize that a peaceful resolution to conflicts is vital. We need to encourage respectful communication and dialogue to pave the way to solving our differences and build on common goals for a brighter future.


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