Don’t boycott just because it’s the popular thing to do.

The below opinion was posted on Facebook by Ezra Horne. It is reposted here by permission. The point is to look carefully at the knee-jerk response, because it may just be counter-productive. Consider all the factors, and think first.


WARNING: Long unpopular rant about the remarks by CEO of Barilla Pasta:

“[Guido Barilla] added: “Everyone has the right to do what they want without disturbing those around them””

I translated this article in google, but it shows his statements in context a lot better than the media here.

http://www.radio24.ilsole24ore.com/notizie/lazanzara/2013-09-26/guido-barilla-spot-famiglia-122352.php

“”Okay, if they like our pasta and our communication, then eat, or eat another pasta. One can not always please everyone. ” “I respect everyone” – adds Barilla – “do what they want without disturbing others. I am also in favor of gay marriage, but no gay adoption for a family. From the father of several children I think it is very complex to raise up the children in a same-sex couple. “”

I think the LGBT community loses credibility with these fights. We can express our disapproval and even boycott, but constantly calling for boycotts on everything is ridiculous. You could boycott Barilla, but how do you know that some other CEO for some other pasta brand doesn’t have the same opinion but is smart enough to lie when asked? Or that the checkout girl or the manager of the super market doesn’t approve of gay marriage personally, but isn’t actively fighting it. By encouraging this “groupthink” we are basically sending the message that it’s not even okay to intellectually disagree with us. It’s pretty 1984 if you ask me. When you punish honesty, however hard to hear, you encourage people to lie, and lying will make the progress we’re trying to make a lot harder, as we will think we have more support than we really do.

Maybe the guy IS actively fighting gay rights, but during another part of the interview, he says that is okay with gay marriage, just not gay adoption. So I predict this guy’s opinion of gays is going to actually get WORSE.

Why not get Dan Savage to invite him for a Pasta Dinner to show him gay families are healthy, normal and stable? Help him see why he should be more supportive, not lash out at a guy who is not really “antigay” but has a perception that women are central to the family, (as MANY people do) and needs help seeing how it can be done.

I am not boycotting this brand. I understand if you do, but it’s a good product at a price point I can afford, and the man doesn’t hate gay people, he just has an opinion which needs to be changed.

A boycott is just going to make him lie, say he’s changed his mind to save sales, and then teach his children about how the gays BULLIED him with hate speech even though he just shared an unpopular opinion. So you pick the outcome you’d prefer.

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