If you’re at all like me you probably belong to a couple right-wing forums or groups online, not to troll, but to keep an eye on what the other side is thinking and doing. If you do frequent any right wing forum online, it won’t take long to run into the word “boycott.”
“Boycott” is one of the most popular words in any given right-wing group or forum. Yes, liberal groups love to call for boycotts as well, in fact, I’d bet it was a liberal that invented the very concept. The difference is liberals tend to boycott certain products and organizations over issues such as corruption, cruelty to animals, unfair labor practices, or anything that is to the detriment of a just and fair society. The religious right on the other hand boycott because… the Bible.
I believe the majority of Christians in this country are decent people that are intelligent enough to know that the Bible (a book written hundreds of years AD) is not the literal word of God, and has many different interpretations. Unfortunately, a large percentage of Christians out there refer to a handful of passages when justifying their hate and bigotry. This is where the boycott comes into play. One example in particular got me thinking.
World renowned Christian leader Reverend Franklin Graham told his Facebook followers to stop doing business with corporations that promote “unbiblical principles”. Graham singled out Wells Fargo, not for documented cases of corruption, no; Graham called for a boycott of Wells Fargo because of a TV commercial and online ad that features a lesbian couple learning sign language for their adopted daughter. “Hello, beautiful,” the couple tells a little girl in the ad using sign language, “we’re going to be your new mommies.” This ad alone upset Graham so much that not only did his companies stop doing business with Wells Fargo, he called on his followers to do the same.
Graham also singled out Tiffany’s & Co., again, not for any documented cases of shady business practices, but because Tiffany’s began advertising wedding bands for same-sex couples. “It dawned on me that we don’t have to do business with them,” Graham told his Facebook followers. “At the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, we are moving our accounts from Wells Fargo to another bank. And guess what, we don’t have to shop at Tiffany & Co., there are plenty of other jewelry stores.”
What I found so comically hypocritical about Graham’s calls for boycotting was that it all took place on Facebook. Facebook openly and LOUDLY supports same-sex marriage, among a host of other progressive causes. I could spend the entire day on Facebook reading anti-Planned Parenthood rants by the religious right, another organization that Facebook proudly supports.
All this begs the question, why doesn’t the religious right boycott Facebook? I reached out to Mr. Graham for an answer. I’m not holding my breath for a reply.
Photo By Giuseppe Milo from Dublin, Ireland (Dublin gay pride 2013 ) [CC BY 2.0 ()], via Flickr