Today I woke up, decided to peruse Twitter, and saw a retweet by Marci Michelle of 24 fame, entitled “Why Target and Best Buy’s support of anti-gay bigots should change the way you shop forever.” I was obviously grabbed by this tag line, and decided to read further. What followed was a report on how Target and Best Buy have both donated over $100,000 to Minnesota Forward, a political group that follows individuals like Tom Emmer.
A quick browse of his Wikipedia article shows that Thomas Earl Emmer, Jr. is a university-educated 49 year-old politician from Indiana campaigning to be Minnesota’s next governor whose political views leave a slightly sour taste in my mouth. He believes that pharmacists should decide who they give contraception to on “the basis of “ethical, moral or legal grounds as long as the pharmacist notifies their employer in advance and the employer can ensure a patient has timely access to the drug or device” and that Minnesota should be exempt from federal law, whilst he opposes abortion and doesn’t seem to mind too much about drink driving. Where his political views are especially abhorrent are in the field of same-sex marriage. To say he disagrees with them would be an understatement; he would ban marriage between two men, or for that matter two women, if he ever gets into power, and has support for a number of people who would encourage the execution of homosexuals.
Whilst Target have apologised for this misdemeanour, stating that they are “committed to do better and regret that [they] have let down [their] team members and guests” and that they are “evaluating ways to make sure they know the high value placed on these relationships,” Best Buy have defended their move, saying that their “decision to support MN Forward is based solely on the need to help elect candidates who will make jobs and economic issues a top priority this election” and that their industry is one that is “highly sensitivity to consumer uncertainty, unemployment and market instability,” whilst implying that their support of Minnesota Forward was only to support a “successful economic recovery.”
I for one don’t agree with Tom Emmer’s views, or the fact that two of America’s biggest corporations have, albeit in a roundabout way, supported these naive, narrow-minded, bigoted opinions that such a small proportion of society now find it acceptable to think. Whilst I agree with Carey Alexander, the author of the article which brought this to my attention, and his thoughts that boycotts, an undeniable consequence of this, don’t really help that much, and will not really get much done, I will be boycotting Best Buy, the only retailer of the pair to make its way here in the United Kingdom, from now on, as they just don’t deserve my money any more.