By Tim Trent | SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - San Francisco based gay activist and blogger Roy Steele is organizing, and calling for a nationwide boycott of retailer’s enrolled in a Christian shopping web portal. The Christian Values Network (CVN) of retailers donate a portion of each sale made via the web site, to non-profit religious groups, including the Family Research Council, and Focus on the Family. The former of these organizations has been labelled a "hate groups" by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
"As a gay Christian man, it offends me that these retail stores are donating money to organizations that promote hatred toward the LGBT community," Steele said. "The Family Research Council, and Focus on the Family, have a long history of spreading lies and misinformation about the LGBT community, and the effectiveness of reparative therapy, or 'pray away the gay.' Their behavior is anything but Christian. If these retail organizations are going to support the hate groups financially, it is incumbent upon our community, and our allies, to organize and rise up against hate."
Through the blog "Tie-dyed Jive in the (415)" Steele is coordinating efforts to call, email, fax and write the retail stores. He is also coordinating Labor Day picket lines and protests for brick and mortar locations of retail organizations that do not remove themselves from the CVN network.
"The LGBT community, and the American people, are tired of the hate filled rhetoric that groups like FRC, and Focus on the Family, continue to preach in the name of Christianity," Steele noted. "Microsoft, Apple, and Macy’s all removed their stores from CVN, when they became aware of the relationship between the web portal and the hate groups. It is time for the other retailers to do the same."
The Boycott begins immediately, and follows a successful campaign by Bellingham, Washington student Ben Crowther, to convince Apple to sever ties with CVN. In addition, Microsoft, Macy’s Wells Fargo, Delta Airlines, and BBC America have ended their relationship with CVN. A complete list of boycott targets can be found on the website "Tie-dyed Jive in the (415)".
Established in 2011, the blog "Tie-died Jive in the (415)" is focused on promoting equal rights and marriage equality, and ending discrimination and hateful rhetoric by religious leaders, and politicians.