Beware the Boycott

I don’t want to take too much time addressing this issue, but it does need some clarity.

An Effective Boycott?

Recently, in a conversation that had the potential of causing irreparable damage to my reputation of being nice, I was accused, once again, of being, for lack of a better term, a “liberal.” Why was this accusation (although the term “liberal” was never used) thrown up to me? Simply because of the fact that I went to Disney World.

The History. Back around 1996, the American Family Association (decent group of people) called for a boycott of Disney World and all Disney products. On the heals of this decision, in 1997 Southern Baptists voted to boycott Disney. The reason for this was something called “Gay Days.”

For a couple of years I went along with the ban (which was overturned in 2005). We didn’t go to or buy Disney movies, nor did we go to the theme park in Florida. My wife and I felt that the boycott was justified because we wanted to send a message. We wanted Disney to know that many of their patrons (traditional families) were upset with their decision to have a special day set aside for, and promoting, homosexuality.

The only problem with this particular boycott is that it was unfounded. It was based on faulty information spurred on by indignation. Simply put, the Christians got the facts wrong. Sadly, too many are still refusing to face the facts – Disney does NOT now, nor did it ever, have a “Gay Day.”

What, then, is the true story? In 1991 the gay community in Orlando decided to band together and select a day in which they would all go to Disney world wearing red. What started out as a single day of solidarity turned into a week-long event that now makes up “Gay Days.” Totally apart from Disney, the LGBT community started this. Now, it is a big celebration that takes place all over Orlando. Disney has absolutely nothing to do with it. [Click here for a link to the “Gay Day’s” actual site.]

When it became clear that Disney did not set aside their parks for a day to promote the LGBT lifestyle, I was very happy to ride Mission: SPACE and eat at the Crystal Palace. I was free to purchase Disney DVD’s for Christmas. Finally, I could travel the World Showcase at EPCOT without feeling like I was supporting same-sex marriage. Getting the facts straight (pun intended?) was liberating, and it didn’t make me a “liberal.”

Get the Facts, NOT the Rumors.

1 Thessalonians 5:21 KJV – “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”

It is so embarrassing when Christian groups boycott something based on erroneous information. All it does is send a message that we don’t know what we are talking about – that we’re crazy – that we’re misinformed. When we can’t even do a little research into what is so obvious, what does that say to the unbelieving world about our theology? Have we really studied God’s Word, or are we just going on false assumptions based on the rants of a prejudiced preacher?

  • BTW, another business that is still being boycotted by Christians is Proctor & Gamble.  [For more info on the Proctor & Gamble story, click here.]

What to Do?

It is this simple: unless you never spend any money, you will never be able to keep all your dollars out of the hands of unbelievers who believe differently than you. In case you haven’t noticed, we live in a fallen world full of fallen people. So, what is the answer? There is no perfect answer for every individual. Just try to abide by the following suggestions…

Use good judgment.  If you feel like you are supporting something ungodly in a direct way with your patronage, then stop. Boycott it. On the other hand, if you are not sure, do your homework.

Don’t be unrealistic.  When you are driving across the country and you come to the last gas station for another 200 miles of sand, fill up your tank! It would not be a smart thing to keep driving in hopes that God would drop a fuel can beside a cactus, all because you don’t feel right about buying fuel at a place that sells alcohol. Get real!

Keep things in context.  What is most important? Sometimes we will put our personal crusades ahead of the welfare of our own families.

Want an example? Have you ever avoided the better product or medicine and selected a known inferior, therefore subjecting your children to the possibility of further infection and/or pain? I have. Why? I didn’t want the Devil to get a dollar. Never mind that my child might have died. Never mind that I drove to the other side of town on gas that funds the persecution of Christians in Saudi Arabia, thereby giving the Devil about 25 dollars, all in the hunt to find non-devil-supporting medicine.

Make it Clear.  In other words, make what you are doing clear to the one your boycotting AND the one you patronize. If you never let the business you’re boycotting know about it, what good is it? They need to know why you’re choosing to withhold your money.

Home Depot mascot at Chicago Gay Pride parade.

Recently, we had to make a major purchase involving building supplies.  I made it perfectly clear to the manager from which I did purchase the materials that I chose his place over another. I made it clear that until The Home Depot changed its activist-like policies supporting and promoting the LGBT agenda, I could no longer give them my money, a portion of which would be donated  to LGBT causes (click here for more info). The manager of the competition promptly gave me an additional 10% off.

Be gracious. You don’t have to be a self-righteous jerk to make a point or stand up for what you believe. If you feel there is Biblical support for your stand, make your stand in a biblical, Christ-like way. Don’t bring reproach to the name of Jesus and His church by acting hateful.

Keep This in Mind

If you feel like you must make a stand, do so with all your heart (Col. 3:23). Don’t let intimidation keep you from speaking out for what is right. On the other hand, keep in mind where you are. You are not in heaven, and this is not the Promised Land or the New Jerusalem. Don’t expect unbelievers to always act like saints. When you boycott a decent, secular business for not acting like the Church, you run the risk of alienating the very ones you’re called to reach. Consider the following words of Paul:

1 Corinthians 5:9-13 KJV – “I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators: Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world. But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat. For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within? But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.”

Should we never go to the mall because the owner of the property is possibly an adulterer? Should we quit buying fuel because most providers are Muslim and hate Christians? Should we never buy clothing because the designer used half-naked models in a Paris show? Maybe, but where would it all end? Paul made it pretty clear in the above verses that there are times when it is necessary to “company with fornicators.”

The sad reality is that the very ones we should be boycotting may be IN the church, not outside. If we choose to boycott the world, it might be advisable to first determine if we are being hypocritical. Hypocrites make terrible evangelists and worthless boycotters.

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15 Comments

Filed under Christian Living, Christian Maturity, Christian Unity, Defending Traditional Marriage, legalism, Southern Baptist, Witnessing, World View

15 responses to “Beware the Boycott

  1. I think you took more time explaining it than you wanted! But it is good!
    My main post for next week is basically on the same principle, using 1 John 4:1 as my basis for why Christians should not be quick to believe everything we hear!
    I personally have never been to Disney anywhere (other than two different Disney stores in malls), just because until recently (four years) they have been way too far away and too expensive to visit. I sometimes feel bad that I have little desire to actually go, but I do enjoy many of the movies! I do remember hearing about “Gay Day” years ago before I was a Christian. I did not have all of the facts, either, but I was outraged that they would give so much attention to one group of people! It had nothing to do with homosexuality, per se, I was just upset that they might focus on one group.
    I have never been a fan of “Black History Month” or holidays (or “holidays”) which put specific focus on a particular group of people. I was raised to believe that all people are equal (except the idiots … they are less important! ;P), and giving some people special attention is at least as derogatory as excluding people. You just shift who is being ignored around!
    Pretty good for someone in Junior High (at the time), huh?

  2. I remember hearing about “coming out of the closet” week when we were at Daytona Beach. I was a backslidden Christian at the time, but it made my skin crawl.

    • Yeah, the “Gay Days” irritate me for host of reasons, just like what you’re talking about. But for all the complaints people have about Disney, they do have a “Christian” night. I wonder if the LGBT crowd would boycott because of that?

      Anthony Psalm 57:2

      Sent from iPhone.

  3. SteveC

    I didnt know the real story behind gay-day at Disney. Thanks for clearing that up. This post was a good dose of common sense.

  4. After reading your post I found myself upset with you I can not believe you went to that place and did not invite me. (Lol) all joking aside another great post. I still get emails about the petition to get all religious programming off the air waves. Their has never been a petition and she has been dead for a long time. People need all the info before they start running around acting like crazy people.

    • Brother, I’d go back in a heart beat – if I could afford it, that is. Compared to any other amusement park, there is literally nothing like it. I could spend a week in EPCOT pretending I’m touring the world.

  5. Yes do prove all things…
    God is precise: It is a woman Rev 12 that delivers the true word John1:1, Rev 12:5, Rev 12:13 who restores Acts 3:21 all things to the world before Christ’s return. This woman exposes the lies of Satan who has deceived the whole world Rev 12:9. This woman creates a new thing in the earth by fulfilling God’s promise to Eve Gen 3:15, Jer 31:22, Isa 14:16. Moses and Elijah are together with the word Matt 17:3 they all three are in this one woman. She is like unto Moses Num 12:3. She was raised up Acts 3:22 from the Laodicean church that becomes lukewarm because they refused to hear her Rev 3:14-17. She is bold like Elijah Matt 17:11, Luke 1:17. As Elijah was alone declaring the true God to the people 1 Kings 18:22 so also her witness alone turns the hearts of the fathers to the children Mal 4:5-6 to prepare a people for the Lords return before the great and dreadful day of the Lord Matt 17:3, Luke 9:30. Those who will not hear Acts 3:23 the true word of God she now delivers to the world free of charge, as a witness, at the heel of time from the wilderness Rev 12:6 will not be allowed inside the walls of God’s coming kingdom from heaven Rev 21. This true testimony of the true value of the blood of the Lamb delivers the truth that not one child of God will be put in a hell fire no matter what their sins. It never entered the heart or mind of God to ever do such a thing Jer 7:31, Jer 19:5. God created evil Isa 45:7 to teach his children the knowledge of good and evil Rom 8:7, Gen 3:22 so that at their resurrection they become a god Matt 22:29-30, Ps 82:6. Prove all things. You cannot rightly judge this unless you read all that has been written by this woman first Pro 18:13. Start here http://minigoodtale.wordpress.com Check out the bruising of Satan and the reason for all of mankind’s sufferings. This is the Gospel that shall be preached in all the world as a witness and then the end will come.

  6. Bart

    I appreciate you speaking up and sharing your views. Not because I like them but because I think it’s important to expose small minded and hateful opinions. We shouldn’t let them fester in dark corners of our land. It only leads people to think that such petty thoughts are the norm. By exposing them to the world they get a chance to see the unthinking hatreds they hold are not so accepted in wider society.

    “But for all the complaints people have about Disney, they do have a “Christian” night. I wonder if the LGBT crowd would boycott because of that? ”

    Why would you even think that? Just because you hate gays does that automatically mean gay people hate Christians? Do you think that before segregation ended, all Black people hate Whites? Before Miscegenation laws were struck down did all single race couples hate mixed couples? Before women got the vote did all Women hate Men?

    • “But for all the complaints people have about Disney, they do have a “Christian” night. I wonder if the LGBT crowd would boycott because of that? ”

      Why would I even think that? And wait just a cotton-pick’n minute, Bart! You said, “Just because you hate gays…” Why do you think I hate gay? Don’t put words in my mouth.

      First off, I don’t hate gays. I abhor the lifestyle, that’s all. Don’t link me with the Westboro Baptist hatemongers, or anyone like that. I don’t hate homosexuals, and neither does God. However, I will not deny that I firmly believe that it is sinful to practice homosexuality. I do have a couple of friends that are gay, so I don’t hate them. They know I love them, as a matter of fact; but they also know what I think of their choices.

      Secondly, the comment that I made about the LGBT crowd boycotting Disney because of the “Night of Joy” every year wouldn’t amaze me. Have they not boycotted Chik-fil-A? You’ve got to admit that there are bad apples in every box, and many gay activists aren’t exactly promoting Christianity, but opposing it at every turn. But of course, that is their right.

      Thanks, Bart, for taking the time to comment. I would have posted your comment earlier, but I just found it tucked away in the “spam” file. Unlike many others, your comment made sense ;-)

      • MP

        You can’t tell someone you abhor their identity and then say “Oh, but I don’t hate you.” I imagine your gay “friends” have a different opinion of your relationship than you do. I have been cordial to anti-gay bigots in the past. Maybe they would have described me as their friend. But I would never have called any of them my friend.

        Also, gays don’t boycott Chick-fil-A because it’s run by a Christian, they boycott Chick-fil-A because they donate to anti-LGBT groups. Most American gays are Christian, in fact, and have no problem with Christians who don’t oppose their rights.

        And the AFA bears false witness to promote their agenda. They’re not decent folk. They, like most anti-gay groups, distort science and use long-discredited studies from hacks like Paul Cameron. A classic tactic is using studies that compare single parents to two parent families, and say that the results show that children need a mother and a father, and same-sex parents are inadequate – when there were no same-sex couples at all in the studies!

      • Thank you for taking the time to stop by and comment. I appreciate it, really.

        I have to say, though, that you are certainly mischaracterizing my relationship to gays. It is entirely possible to hate the homosexual lifestyle, agenda, sin, or what have you, and not hate the person. As a parent, does my extreme disapproval of drug use, a lifestyle with which one could identify, automatically result in hating my child? That would be ridiculous!

        With regards to my “friends,” you may have a point. I can’t know what is in their hearts any more than you. Yet, love does not require a two-way street. I will continue to care for them, even if they secretly despise me.

        Being that I’m on an iPhone, not a computer, I won’t take the time to respond to everything else. No need, anyway. If you are absolutely convinced in your heart of hearts that it is natural and, from a Christian perspective, completely biblical for two people of the same sex to have sex, etc., then who am I to change your mind? As for me, I will choose to oppose the attempts of those who want to normalize homosexuality and legitimize it as just another happy, healthy, and “Christian” identity or way of sexual fulfillment. It is not natural, nor biblical.

        But, again, thanks for stopping by.

  7. MP

    You think of it that way because you think of being gay as a sin that is chosen. The scientific evidence is that it is not (based on twin studies, studies on the effect of the prenatal environment). There are studies that have found correspondence between physical characteristics and sexuality such as direction of hair whorls, handedness, lengths of fingers, etc. You would not expect those to correlate if it was simply a choice. It would be nonsensical for the length of your ring vs. index finger to influence your “decision” to be gay or straight. As far as “natural”, aside from the fact that we love plenty of things that are “unnatural” (such as eyeglasses, computers and modern medicine) and dislike things that are natural (such as miscarriages, poison ivy, polio)… homosexuality is known to exist in hundreds of species. It’s plenty natural.

    The vast majority of gays will also tell you the same – they didn’t just decide to be gay. Why do you assume that they’re all lying, rather than that you are quite probably mistaken? Do you suppose that holding a position that implicitly calls most gay people liars would have an effect on whether they think of your position as bigoted?

    Or compare: Suppose I say I disapprove of Christianity. It is, after all, a lifestyle choice. You certainly don’t have to be a Christian. I think we should oppose Christianity, and furthermore, they shouldn’t have the right to get married, their churches shouldn’t be tax exempt (but other religions can be), Christian prayers in public should be banned because I don’t think we should normalize and legitimize Christianity as another happy and healthy identity. It’s unnatural superstition based on an ancient book that causes mental anguish to people around the world who believe their sadistic threats of hellfire. But I love Christians. I simply abhor Christianity, but I still love those who have fallen into its web of lies. When Christians say that they can’t help but be convinced of God’s love, the fact is that they’re simply unwilling to state the truth: they’re incredibly afraid of death, and chose to delude themselves instead.

    Now, would you say that’s a bigoted position? And the thing is – being a Christian is far more of a choice than being gay is. It’s far more valid to “hate the sin” there, because your religious beliefs certainly have no genetic or inherent basis in the individual.

    • I am heterosexual. I was born that way. I know I am a male, and have no question about it. There are others who may have been born male or female, but have a tendency to be attracted to the same sex. I am attracted to women, exclusively.

      Now, just because I am attracted to women doesn’t mean I have the right to have sex with any woman I want, especially considering I am married (I believe it’s a man/woman thing). However, if I were to be honest, I have a tendency toward adultery. I occasionally have physical desires for other women. Why? Because I am human, a man, and a man that lives in a fallen world. But just because I was born a man, and have the desires of a man, that does not make it right to follow my tendencies. If adultery is a sin (and it is), my desires and tendencies have to be controlled. It should be no different for any other sin, including the act of homosexual sex – which is a choice.

      I understand that some people are born with feelings that are different from the norm. However, that is not an excuse for inexcusable behavior. And according the scriptures, it is inexcusable behavior, no less than adultery.

      When you cite “scientific evidence,” I have to be suspicious. The greatest scientific evidence is as obvious as the signs on restroom doors. If the objective observer were to look at two males and two females and consider the biological function of each part, I seriously doubt many would question what went where. The “evidence” shows that man and woman were made for each other. It is at the point of interpretation of the “evidence” where the one who wants to justify his behavior will diverge.

      With regards to the “natural” argument, cannibalism is also common in many species. Black widows kill and eat their mates, and that’s perfectly natural. But there is a big difference between humans and bugs and dogs and birds.

      With regards to calling gays “liars,” where do you get that? I do not assume they are lying.

      Now, when it comes to your argument about Christianity, are you equating homosexuality with a religion, with faith? Are you attacking Christianity? Is that argument really on the same level? Unless you are only trying to make a point, it would seem to me from your wording that you actually do have a serious problem with Christianity, that you may actually feel the way you described. Am I wrong?

      But that’s where the rubber really meets the road, is it not? The idea that this world was created by a moral Agent, and that we are not the amoral animals our nature desires to be, is repugnant to you, no? Go ahead, disagree, attack, malign, do whatever you choose. The ultimate question is “what will you do with Christ.”

      Yes, I chose Jesus Christ. Afraid of hell? Sure, why not? I am guilty of breaking God’s laws, and without Christ I would have no hope of being justified before a holy God. But it is because of the love of Christ, not threats, that I am drawn to Christianity. That He would willingly suffer the cross in my stead is amazing. And that realization, not one’s sexual preference, has changed the hardest hearts.

      Ultimately, MP, it doesn’t matter what you believe with regards to whom you have sex with. What will matter most in eternity is what you do with Jesus.

      Jesus said, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. – Matthew 10:32-33

    • MP, just in case you might be interested in hearing a gay perspective on the issue of sin, here is a link I would recommend. http://gayandevangelical.wordpress.com/2011/03/23/did-god-create-me-this-way/

      • There is also the very amazing book by the very amazing Christopher Yuan titled “Out of a Far Country: A gay son’s journey to God. A broken mother’s search for hope.”
        I think most people, including many Christians, would be surprised to find that our understanding of sexuality, both biblical and everyday, and what it means to “hate the sin, love the sinner” in this context is at best limited and higher in God’s eyes than what is popularly understood about Christians’ understanding. In fact, our Western culture (not just the Church, but all of society in general) has a very distorted view of sexuality.
        That is all I will say for now!

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