I never intended for this blog to be overly political, but it seems that there are often political issues and arguments on my mind when I sit down to write.
I’ve been tempted to write something about the “Mosque” that everyone’s been talking about “at” Ground Zero, but so many people have already said things so eloquently that it seems redundant. So here’s the only thing I want to add: if they want to build the center there, let them. The thing I worry about, though, is that they will build it, LEGALLY, and will then become victims of hate crimes, a la abortion clinics and mosques all across the country. The only thing worse than denying them their right to build would be for them to build the center and live in fear of using it.
It’s been said too many times, but it’s still true: the people who attacked our country were not representative of all Muslims. If we are saying that all religions must answer for their most radical, totally whacko extremists who do horrible, crazy things in the name of religion… then I’m going to go ahead and say the Christian Right has no room to talk.
Okay, on to different things.
I’ve been hearing a lot about boycotting Target recently, which confuses me. Here is my understanding of the situation:
The Supreme Court said that the government can’t ban corporate spending on elections.
Target spent money on an election.
Some people don’t agree with the platform of the candidate Target supported.
Those people are boycotting Target.
The part I’m confused about is which part the boycotters are against. (And I don’t think they’re doing a very good job of making it clear). Is it the fact that Target (a corporation) spent money on an election? Because that’s totally legal right now, according to the Supreme Court. And I imagine that if they had spent money on a candidate that the boycotters supported, we wouldn’t even be having this conversation. We’d all be too busy shopping at Target, thrilled that they seized the moment and capitalized.
Is it the fact that corporate spending on elections is legal? Because that’s not Target’s fault. Don’t punish them.
Is it the fact that Target supported a candidate whose platform goes against your beliefs? I sort of understand this, but I sort of don’t.
I mean, I understand that you don’t want to give money to a company when you know that money might end up supporting a candidate you disagree with. However, we only know about this particular donation because it was a large gift made through the corporation. What about all the gifts made personally by CEOs and presidents of other businesses we patronize? Isn’t that the same idea? And are we really trying to become a nation of people who only support businesses who support candidates who agree with us? What would that nation look like?
One of my favorite cupcake shops in Portland supports Planned Parenthood, which is a cause I believe in with my whole heart. This endears me to said cupcake shop even more. If one of my Republican friends refused to go there because they supported a Planned Parenthood fundraiser, that would be fine. It’s their choice. But if ANY company that supported ANY organization or non-profit that was remotely controversial (why that children’s hospital instead of the one across town?) ended up experiencing huge backlash, why would companies EVER support these groups? And then what? A collection of non-profits who must survive solely on individual support? And how did those individuals make their money? By collecting paychecks from said companies.
I know for a fact that some of the biggest donors to The Foundation are conservative, and they probably aren’t pro-choice. But what if those people didn’t make gifts to The Foundation anymore because they found out that one of the employees made personal donations to Planned Parenthood? Sure, it’s a tiny fraction… but do you think my $20 occasional purchases at Target are going directly into Tom Emmer‘s pocket?
Maybe I’m being too negative. And honestly, it’s totally possible that I just don’t get it. But it seems like Target didn’t really do anything wrong.
Did I totally miss the point? Please let me know. I’m honestly interested in hearing other opinions on this matter.