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March 29, 2009

BOYCOTT ALL JAMAICAN PRODUCTS AND TRAVEL


On March 10th, I reported on a Jamaican travel warning that was issued because of the worsening climate of hate and violence towards all LGBT people in that country.

Over the weekend, a coalition of activists gathered at the Harvey Milk Plaza in San Francisco to declare an all-out boycott of Jamaican products and travel.

Fittingly, the plaza is where Harvey Milk launched his highly successful crusade against Coors beer for their blatantly defiant homophobia. That campaign was so effective that it ultimately crippled Coors' sales so severely that the company was forced to completely restructure its policies and attitudes towards the GLBT community.

Michael Petrelis of the Bay Area Reporter said in his article:

There are several avenues of participation I ask you to consider. Personally boycott Myers's rum and Red Stripe beer. Ask your favorite bars to boycott them also. If you're a bar or restaurant owner willing to pull those products, call me to add your establishment's name to the growing list of gay venues boycotting Jamaican drinks. My phone number is: (415) 621-6267.

Deliver a pro-gay and pro-boycott message to Mr. Anthony Johnson, the Jamaican ambassador to the U.S. Send e-mails to: mbassador@jamaicaembassy.org. You can reach the embassy by telephone at: (202) 452-0660.

Jim Burroway of Box Turtle Bulletin said of the boycott:

After much debate and with some reluctance, I too join the call for a boycott. My reluctance stems from concerns about the impact this boycott may have on LGBT Jamaicans. But in the end, I cannot recommend that American dollars be spent in such a hostile environment. I believe consumers have a right to know what’s happening there and make their spending decisions accordingly.

According to the Boycott Jamaica website:

This nation should be avoided at all costs until the Jamaican government takes action to end the country’s virulently homophobic climate and draconian laws that persecute homosexuals. Until Jamaica takes the following easy steps an official boycott is in effect:

1) Publicly commit to end gay bashing on the island and improve the human rights situation.

2) A statement from the Prime Minister clearly and unequivocally condemning violence against GLBT people and expressing regret for past violence

As I did during the Coors boycott, I will support this boycott by not buying anything Jamaican and if I order any drink in a bar or restaurant that uses rum as an ingredient, I will tell the bartender/waiter that I don't want Myers' rum or any other Jamaican product used in my drink.

2 comments:

Rebecca said...

I will support it too, don't like Red Stripe beer, but no more Myers or other Jamacian rum.
Thanks for the info!

Smadraji said...

Nice Posting
Gay