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  #1  
Old 15 March 2014, 12:36 AM
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Icon13 Sam Adams pulls funding from St. Patrick's Day parade over gay rights

The maker of Sam Adams beer announced that it is withdrawing its sponsorship of Boston's St. Patrick's Day parade because organizers exclude gay groups.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/sam-ada...ghts-1.2573717
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  #2  
Old 15 March 2014, 05:08 AM
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Yay Sam Adams!
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  #3  
Old 17 March 2014, 07:28 AM
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Icon24 Guinness pulls out of New York's St Patrick's Day parade over gay rights

http://www.theguardian.com/world/201...cks-day-parade
Quote:
Guinness has pulled out of New York’s St Patrick's Day parade because gay and lesbian groups have been excluded, costing the organisers of Monday’s event a key sponsor.
Brian
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Old 17 March 2014, 07:36 AM
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It's mentioned in the above article, but Heineken also pulled out. More and more it seems it's just not commercially viable to be homophobic or even neutral on gay rights. These kinds of stories fill me with optimism.

Also, I want beer now.
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Old 17 March 2014, 08:45 AM
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Guinness pulled out? In England, St Patrick's day basically only exists because of Guinness, and these days, Irish pub chains. Twenty or 25 years ago I doubt anybody would have known when it was... How's that for cultural appropriation by corporations?
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  #6  
Old 17 March 2014, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Esprise Me View Post
More and more it seems it's just not commercially viable to be homophobic or even neutral on gay rights.
What would be a problem with a truly neutral stance? Serious question here.
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Old 17 March 2014, 02:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyLockeout View Post
What would be a problem with a truly neutral stance? Serious question here.
Same problem with remaining neutral on civil rights.

Neutrality doesn't always remain neutral as the landscape around you changes.
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Old 17 March 2014, 06:08 PM
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Plus, particularly in hot button issues, the idea of 'if you aren't with us, you are against us' is pretty common.
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Old 17 March 2014, 06:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard W View Post
Guinness pulled out? In England, St Patrick's day basically only exists because of Guinness, and these days, Irish pub chains. Twenty or 25 years ago I doubt anybody would have known when it was... How's that for cultural appropriation by corporations?
St Patrick's Day: How England came to celebrate Irish culture - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-26558215

Apparently it was the relaxing of anti-Irish sentiment in the Nineties, along with Irish culture becoming fashionable (music, dance, etc) that created the environment for Guinness to make their big marketing push.
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  #10  
Old 17 March 2014, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyLockeout View Post
What would be a problem with a truly neutral stance? Serious question here.
"I don't care if everyone has equal rights or not"? You would sound like a bit of a NFBSKhead.
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  #11  
Old 17 March 2014, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LadyLockeout View Post
What would be a problem with a truly neutral stance? Serious question here.
Serious question, what could even be a neutral stance in this instance? Either they continue to exclude groups from the parade on the basis of those groups identity as gay or gay-rights supporting, or they do not continue the exclusion based on that criteria.


To anticipate some answers (not from you LL, just examples):
1. "We don't exclude on that criteria, we just have not signed any such groups up." Is still discrimination.

2. "I am against discrimination of gay people in workplace, housing, etc. but against gay marriage." That is not a neutral stance, it is some pro stances and some against stances on individual issues. I guess overall it is mixed.

3. "I am against discrimination, but also against special privileges, special outreach, and affirmative action." That could be considered neutral, but again, that does not really apply to the issue of exclusion from the parade.
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Old 17 March 2014, 06:54 PM
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You could just refuse to comment one way or another? I mean I guess you may have an opinion privately, but politically and/or legally you could just 'abstain'. Or, as Chloe said, just say "Who cares?". I mean ever year we have plenty of issues on the voting ballot that I don't care about one way or the other, that seems to be fairly neutral.
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Old 17 March 2014, 06:57 PM
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What everyone else said. I think continuing to sponsor an organization or event that discriminates, without actually being discriminatory in one's own actions (i.e. also sponsoring parades that do allow LGBT contingents) is a neutral stance. But neutral isn't always right--sometimes there are clear right and wrong sides on an issue, and neutrality is just cowardice (or greed, if your motivation is to avoid pissing off any potential customers.) I'm not saying the beer companies' motives are pure here; quite the opposite. I'm sure this was a calculated decision on the basis that neutrality would cost them more than doing the right thing. What that says to me, though, is that we've made a great deal of progress as a society, because if fewer people cared about gay rights, neutrality would be the more cost-effective option.
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Old 17 March 2014, 07:04 PM
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I actually think pulling the funding is pretty close to a neutral stance when you're talking about corporate sponsorship. I mean, not funding something is the neutral position, (what's the position of all of the corporations who don't sponsor the parade in the first place?) so going from funding to not funding is really just going from supporting to neutral. Making a statement when you pull the funding can make it clear than you're changing your position for a reason, but just stopping funding something seems to me to be moving to the neutral position. Funding opposition would be the opposing position as far as spending money is concerned, I think.
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Old 17 March 2014, 07:13 PM
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I sort of agree, but think that it still suggests support.. I mean lets reverse it, and say that Company X pulled funding from Event Y because there were lots of people who were against event Y because it allowed gay people to participate.

Most people would probably not consider such a decision neutral.
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Old 17 March 2014, 07:35 PM
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Well, I think having a neutral position on civil rights issues is asshattery, so it's not like I'm letting companies off the hook or something. If the event were, say, the Pride parade and an existing sponsor pulled out because of, say, a threatened boycott of their products, I think it's fair to condemn that move and perhaps boycott from the other side. But for example if a company pulled out of an event that was previously not controversial but was becoming controversial for non-civil-rights reasons, it could just be a business decision that the event no longer makes sense to sponsor from a PR standpoint.

I'm by no means saying that a company should be insulated from criticism for taking a neutral stance on anything. I just think not funding something is the neutral stance in the corporate sponsorship world.
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Old 17 March 2014, 08:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chloe View Post
"I don't care if everyone has equal rights or not"? You would sound like a bit of a NFBSKhead.
I know the OP was about corporate sponsorships, but at the individual level I've met plenty of people who's attitude is pretty much that. They don't oppose gay marriage per se, but they don't really care if it's legal or not. I've heard people say things like "I'm not gay, so why should I care?" before.
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Old 17 March 2014, 09:00 PM
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And those people sound like a bit of a NFBSKhead.
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  #19  
Old 17 March 2014, 09:07 PM
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I don't disagree.
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  #20  
Old 17 March 2014, 10:55 PM
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Another possible issue with corporate neutrality is it leaves the door open for someone lower down the chain of command like a mid level executive/franchisee to make some kind of comment/action that can reflect negatively on the whole corporation.

If corporation X has come out in support of gay rights/marriage and a executive/franchisee makes an extremely homophobic comment then it just looks like some ignorant nfbsk-wad spouting off.

If corporation Y has not said anything and the same thing happens then it can look like they condone the comment.
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