Now that we are between elections we will have to wait a while to make our voices heard through the ballot box. But in the meantime there is actually a lot that we can still do to fight right wing extremism in our every day lives. One of the best ways to do that is by going after major right wing donors and their businesses and hitting them where it hurts….in their wallets.
You can actually use your hard earned dollars to send a message that reflects OUR values and priorities. I’ve listed a few of the right wing companies that have historically been either major donors to extreme Conservative causes and candidates or that run their operations directly against core Progressive values. Now this is certainly not an exhaustive list, sadly there are many more, but this list of very common brands is certainly a good place to start. And of course another great thing you can do is to patronize Liberal businesses. But here’s some that you should definitely avoid….
This one is likely no surprise to you because their anti-gay stance has been in the news quite a bit over the past couple years. But not only are they completely against gay marriage, they also are huge donors to extreme right wing candidates and causes.
Hobby Lobby is another business that has gotten a lot of media attention because of their extreme Conservative views. Hobby Lobby is not only against a woman’s right to choose, but they are also against birth control. After Obamacare was implemented they vehemently fought against the employer mandate for birth control to be included in their insurance policy. They actually took their fight all the way to the Supreme Court….and won.
You know, the really ironic part of this story is that Hobby Lobby and Conservatives claim that they were fighting this mandate because they are so against abortion. But without affordable access to contraception, there will surely be more abortions. I’m not sure that they thought this one all the way through…..
Carl’s Jr. has been notorious for objectifying women in most of their highly sexual and controversial ads. But they also have been huge supporters of extreme anti-abortion causes. And if that’s not enough reason to avoid this fast food restaurant, they are also totally against gay rights. As a matter of fact, gay rights groups actually started calling the food “Bigot burgers” after the company’s founder, Carl Karcher, came out in support for a 1978 proposition which would have allowed school boards to fire any teacher for being gay or for advocating homosexuality. In addition Carl’s Jr. is also a big time donor for Conservative Super PACs and the Republican Party.
Over the past several years Walmart has consistently gotten into trouble for controversial practices. It is widely known that they pay their employees extremely low wages and are totally against any sort of raising of the national minimum wage. They are also famous for being anti-women. Many of their female employees have continually spoken out about wide-spread discrimination. In 2011 several female employees actually filed a class action law suit against Walmart and took it all the way to the Supreme Court.
Marriott, along with their subsidiary Ritz-Carlton, has been a major donor to Conservative Super PACs and extreme right wing candidates. Their chairman, J.W. Marriott Jr., contributed more than a Million dollars to Mitt Romney’s Super PAC, Restore Our Future.
Waffle House is another restaurant run by extreme Conservatives who are major donors to right wing causes and candidates. As a matter of fact, 100% of all of their donations went directly to Conservatives. Waffle House’s CEO, Jim Rogers Jr., has been a big supporter of Republican causes for a very long time. In 2006 he joined the finance team for Mitt Romney’s Super PAC, Common Wealth PAC.
Angel Soft toilet paper, Brawny paper towels, and Dixie cups are all subsidiaries of Koch Industries, headed by the Koch brothers. And they donate Millions of dollars every year to groups like The National Rifle Association, The National Right To Life Committee, and Grover Norquist.
Exxon Mobil has a very long history of fighting against the LGBT community. As the Huffington Post reported in 2013, Exxon “has been fighting for years against non-discrimination protection and equal benefits coverage for their employees.” Moreover, as IdentitiesMic reports – “before Exxon acquired Mobil in 1999, Mobile had ‘policies to protect discrimination against gay men and lesbians, and even offered benefits to same-sex couples,’ but Exxon took that all away, according to LGBT news site the Dallas Voice.”
Cracker Barrel is yet another company who has had a long history of racist and anti-gay practices. They have been known to fire employees who did not appropriately display heterosexual behaviors. In 2004, the U.S. Justice Department declared that the restaurant had discriminated against both employees and diners based on the color of their skin or sexual orientation.
Urban Outfitters has a very well known reputation for being both anti-women and anti-gay. In 2008, the company’s president and founder, Richard Haney, decided to back one of the Presidential nominees. And of all of the choices out there he felt he most aligned with the homophobic Rick Santorum. And in addition this company is also a major donor for extreme Conservative causes and candidates.