The 5 Anti-Gay Boycotts That Failed Spectacularly
Faith2Action spokeswoman and modern day Mean Girl Janet Porter won’t be using Tylenol to cure her headache, arthritis, cold and flu and sleeplessness anytime soon. Angered over the presence of a lesbian couple in a December 2014 Tylenol commercial, Porter called for a boycott of the popular headache remedy. Porter — who called for a similar boycott last year of Facebook — had this statement on the Faith2Action website:
“Their campaign to redefine the family is giving me a headache-but I won’t be taking a Tylenol.
We’ve all seen the beautiful Norman Rockwell paintings of a family around the Thanksgiving table. Well now, Tylenol is trying to normalize two lesbians, an ex-husband, and another adult acting as “parents.” The voiceover says, “Our definition of family is now expanding and blossoming so it’s not this rigid, fixed picture…”
Apparently the ideal of a mom and a dad is too “rigid” for Tylenol. They want to blossom into some kind of group marriage that reflects the desires of adults instead of what every shred of social science research shows best for children.
No Tylenol, we’re not swallowing the lie.”
Considering that Tylenol’s parent company Johnson & Johnson made over $18.4 billion in 2013, Faith2Action’s little boycott is unlikely to affect the company in any noticeable way. In fact, conservative “marriage groups” have been launching un-winnable boycotts against corporate giants for years now with no greater ambition than to generate press — looks like it works.
And yet, we’ve decided to stroll down memory lane and recount five such doomed-to-fail boycotts to mock them a bit like they deserve.
Back in 2012, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) targeted Starbucks for supporting then Washington Governor Christine Gregoire’s push to legalize gay marriage. The company said “we are proud to join other leading Northwest employers in support of Washington state legislation recognizing marriage equality for same-sex couples.” In response, NOM created the website DumpStarbucks.com urging others to get their caffeine fix elsewhere.
Hilariously, Starbucks “stock and dividends rose 7.6 percent” in the year after the boycott began. Over 60 million customers visit Starbucks every week. The number of people who pledged to “Dump Starbucks”? A mere 71,190 — that’s 0.1 percent of Starbucks’ weekly customer base.
In 2013, the company CEO stuck to his guns and invited unhappy shareholders to find a better return on their stock investment. Washington State later legalized gay marriage by majority vote through Referendum 74. Meanwhile, NOM continued its losing campaign by expanding it to Asian and Arabic countries where same-sex marriage initiatives don’t even exist.
In 2014, Target threw their support behind gay marriage by signing a brief before the Chicago Federal Court of Appeals. The signing signaled quite a shift from one of the nations’ largest retailers whom had taken some serious heat in the past for their 2010 donation to outspokenly anti-gay Minnesota gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer. NOM quickly condemned the retail giant pro-gay stance and threatened a boycott of Target products.
Unfortunately for NOM, Target is still alive and kicking. They also received a perfect 100 score on the Human Right’s Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index; this, despite the fact that the company made a 2013 donation to a group supporting the reelection campaign of anti-gay Virginia governor Ken Cuccinelli.
In 2005, Pastor Ken Hutcherson threatened to damage Microsoft stock by calculating a dump of Microsoft stock by members of his church, one of the largest in Washington. Hutcherson was upset over Microsoft’s support of a 2005 bill that would have outlawed discrimination of gays in the workplace. Microsoft waffled back and forth before throwing their complete support behind the bill.
Not being a mathematician or business analyst, Hutcherson failed to calculate that his congregation of 700 people formed less than one one-hundredth of a percent of Microsoft’s total user base — the impact of their coordinated dump wouldn’t have even registered a blip on Microsoft’s stock price.
As a result of his plan, Hutcherson also received a hand slap from the Treasury Department who warned that it was tantamount to illegal stock manipulation.
It remains unclear whether Hutcherson moved all church computers over to Linux.
NOM had a fit when JP Morgan conducted a company poll asking employees about their support of GLBT rights. NOM president Brian Brown was unhappy with what he viewed as the company “clearly pushing the LGBT agenda.”
NOM launched the “Void Chase” campaign, similar to the Starbucks boycott earlier that year. The success of the “Void Chase” garnered just over 4,000 signatures. For those of you keeping score at home, JP Morgan is the largest bank in the U.S. with over 2.6 trillion in total assets. In contrast, NOM has 59,236 Facebook likes, some of them from gay activists who like to keep their eyes on the group’s anti-gay shenanigans.
GIRL SCOUTS OF AMERICA
Republican Indiana State Representative Bob Morris went off the deep end in 2012 after he was invited to sign a resolution celebrating the 100th birthday of the Girl Scouts Of America. Morris, a staunch conservative and pro-lifer had this to say about the organization:
“Liberal progressive troop-leaders will indoctrinate the girls in their troop according to the principles of Planned Parenthood…
Many parents are abandoning the Girl Scouts because they promote homosexual lifestyles. In fact, the Girl Scouts education seminar girls are directed to study the example of role models. Of the fifty role models listed, only three have a briefly-mentioned religious background —all the rest are feminists, lesbians, or Communists.”
Morris backtracked but still refused to sign the resolution celebrating the centennial anniversary of the group. He also threw his support behind a boycott of the group and their delicious cookies.
At this point, Girl Scouts of America could admit that they make their cookies with baby tears and murdered kittens and we’d all still push an old lady over to get our boxes of Thin Mints and Tagalongs.
Featured image by Cecilia…