Anti-Marriage Group Sees Corporations Move to the Other Side
The corporate support sometimes takes a whimsical turn -- equally infuriating to the Right.
To celebrate Pride month, Kraft Foods posed a gay-pride-themed picture of an Oreo cookie on Facebook, June 25. The post pictured an Oreo filled with six layers of frosting in the colors of the rainbow Pride flag. An accompanying text reads, "Proudly support love!"
Despite some calls for a boycott, Kraft’s gay pride Oreo post drew 20,000 comments.
Back in Minnesota, the Target Corporation found itself in hot water with NOM when it launched a Pride tee-shirt campaign in honor of Gay Pride Month, selling a variety of designs online for $12.99 a piece, with all of the proceeds going to the Family Equality Council. The retail giant, based out of Minnesota, sold out the entire stock in less than a month, raising $120,000 for the beneficiary.
NOMs Baker questioned Target’s intentions with the Pride Tee Shirt campaign. "What we’re asking businesses to do is create a work environment that is welcoming to all of the employees. And they can do that through adopting a neutral stance over the Minnesota Marriage amendment."
The last time Target made the news on the gay marriage issue, it was in stark contrast to the Pride tee shirt campaign. In 2010, the company donated money to Minnesota Forward, a PAC that supported Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer; a staunch opponent of gay marriage and domestic partnership benefits for government employees. Many LGBT activists called for a boycott on Target because of the company’s contribution to the pro-Emmer group.
Whether because of that pressure, bad press or a genuine change of heart, it appears that Target has done a 180-degree turn.
Chick-Fil-A Continues Anti-Gay Policies
Although NOM isn’t feeling the love these days from corporate America, In his letter to businesses, Baker warned of the hazards of "wading into a culture war," and pointed out that North Carolina voters recently approved a marriage amendment.
Minnesota is different, however. Minnesotans United for All Families reported last month it had raised $3.1 million in the first half of 2012. The amount brought the group’s total since the start of the campaign in 2011 to $4.6 million. That means the group has raised three times more money than the NOM-backed supporters of the effort to amend the state Constitution to ban gay marriage.
Still, there exist companies that make large donations to anti-gay groups. Chick-Fil-A has become better known for its alleged anti-gay donations than for its fried chicken. According to a newly-released analysis of Chick-Fil-A’s charitable work, found that the fast food chain donated nearly $2 million to anti-gay groups over the course of 2010. Even more disturbing, Chick-Fil-A is said to have donated an estimated $5 million to anti-gay organizations and hate groups between 2003 and 2010.
Among the anti-gay groups that WinShape, Chick-Fil-A’s charitable arm, donated to in 2010 are Marriage & Family Foundation, National Christian Foundation, Exodus International, and the Family Research Council - to name a few. Oddly enough, the National Organization for Marriage did not receive any donation from Chick-Fil-A.
Still the Chick-Fil-A’s appear to be outnumbered by the pro-gay groups. As more and more corporations line up to support our rights, those on the Right are finding that boycotts are quickly becoming impossible in a consumer culture dominated by giant (pro-gay) companies.
An anti-gay consumer, for example, would have to steer clear of Microsoft, Apple, Google, Yahoo and IBM for starters. That pretty much leaves the electric typewriter in the attic.
Furthermore, the threat of right-wing boycotts long ago lost their sting when the powerful Southern Baptists joined with other groups in a much-ballyhooed boycott of the Walt Disney Company. The boycott appeared to make not one dent in the corporate coffers of the entertainment giant.