Monday, February 7, 2011

Does it really matter?

In case you have yet to be informed, Chick-fil-A is not exactly a great friend of the queer community. They have a history of making donations to anti-gay organizations and their charitable arm has been known to host marriage workshops led by outspoken anti-gay public figures. Many people have chosen to participate in the boycott of Chick-fil-A until they become a more inclusive company by supporting the queer community. I’ve been thinking a great deal about this boycott and similar boycotts of companies that I don’t agree with their policies or charitable donations. I’ve been pondering a question that I often get asked, especially by my grandmother. It is, does your boycott really do anything?

I guess that if you look at the big picture of things, that just little old me boycotting a company does not do much but that is not how I see it. The act of purchasing an item is the same thing as voting for an item. By choosing to purchase the item, you have shown your support for the item and the company that made that item. In life people only have control over one thing, themselves. No one can control others into doing anything; they can only control their own actions. I cannot help but hear my old high school coaches yelling at me that I only have the power and the responsibility of what I can do and I should hold myself accountable. They were right and their advice carries over outside of sports. I cannot control where other people spend their money, what they chose to support, or if they even choose to become informed shoppers but I control my choice to be as responsible as possible with where I chose to spend my money. Although one purchase or lack of purchase will not have a large affect, it will have great power if there a great number of others choose to spend their money in the same manner. If my opinion is shared by others and they join in a boycott then the boycott gains power. Every individual in the boycott is important to keep the boycott running and the information out there. My answer to the question is yes; my boycott really matters.

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