Tuesday, November 30, 2004

BOYCOTT TARGET (unless you hate poor people)

This story actually surfaced a week ago, but since University Daily and some other campus newspapers are just now picking this up, this seemed like a good time to begin my campaign to


In case you haven't heard, Target has decided to not allow The Salvation Army to solicit for donations outside of its stores during the holiday season.

Target's reasoning is that too many nonprofit organizations are requesting to solicit at their retail stores, so therefore they have decided to allow none of them to solicit. Including The Salvation Army, who has been taking donations in front of Target stores for decades.

Target's logic is that of a 3rd grade teacher. If you don't bring enough cupcakes for everybody in the class, then nobody gets a cupcake. While that policy might have maintained civility in Mrs. Roundtree's class, it doesn't work when dealing with charity.

The Salvation Army receives $9 million in donations from Target patrons during the holiday season. More than from any other retailer. In Lubbock, even donations from patrons of uber-retailer Wal-Mart are one-fourth of those received from Target patrons. Target also seems to forget that this is not their money. This is 9 extra-large from the hands of their customers , outside of the store, by their own volition. It costs Target nothing to allow these donations.

Does Target really expect us to believe that because they can't allow every nonprofit to solicit for donations, that it's ok for them to allow none?

My mother grew up dirt poor. Most years, the only Christmas presents her and her siblings got were those delivered on Christmas morning by The Salvation Army. No Hoover Christmas is complete without hearing the story of how The Salvation Army brought four-year old Martha a Tiny Tears doll on Christmas.

Target also defends by citing their yearly donations of $2 million to various charitites. Explain to me how giving $2 million over the course of one year makes it ok to preclude your customers from giving $9 million in one month.

So if you enjoy reasonably priced toiletries, like to fill up your dorm/apartment with cheap, blase "decorations", and you have no soul, please continue to shop at Target. As for me and my house (including Big Jer) we will not be.

If you would like to join us in rallying against Target's greed and unscrupulousness, here's how you can help.

1. Don't shop there. Duh.
2. Target's contact information. Drop them a line or give them a ring to let them know your compliance with step #1 above.
3. Blog it. If you have a blog. Which most of you do.
4. Shop at Michael's, Hobby Lobby, Barnes & Noble, South Coast Plaza, or even (*shudder*) Wal-Mart.
5. Help The Salvation Army make up the difference by donating online.
6. Any sort of guerilla, Fight Club-esque attacks against Target retail stores are strongly not discouraged.

Do it for the sake of Chrismukkah. Jesus and Moses join forces to take down corporate greed. Solidarity.