Friday, April 30, 2010

not to praise boycotting, but to bury it

Instead of boycotting Arizona, perhaps we should go and perpetrate creative civil disobedience. That might be more effective than the loss of a mid-size convention (and it might bring us more publicity, at the same time). I agree with the Arizona UUs' protest, and I agree with UUA President Peter Morales' statement condemning the new Arizona law requiring identification. I do not necessarily agree with the flood of emails and Facebook posts about moving GA out of Phoenix in 2012. It is easy for us (although difficult for the folks making arrangements) to boycott--it makes us feel righteous, for having "stood up" for our principles. I do not believe that has much of an impact. But creative street theater--stopping affluent white folks, and demanding their identification, for example, perhaps as they enter/leave businesses or the capitol--seems like it might make more of a splash. We might all dress "like illegal immigrants" and loiter about the capitol area, and make them ask for our IDs--citizens can sue the police for not demanding ID.

If Dr. King had called for a boycott of products made in Alabama, and asked conferences to convene elsewhere, would that really have had the same effect?


At 9:14 AM, Blogger Chalicechick said...

The Dr. King example seems kind of ironic given the early 1990s boycott of the state for not recognizing the Martin Luther King holiday. That boycott worked.

I don't love boycotts. But as ideas go, I like them a lot better than harassing people and/or getting to see how my fellow UUs percieve that illegal immigrants dress.


At 7:59 AM, Anonymous Heather said...

There is also the dimension of self care to consider; for many, to give money to the state of AZ will violate their integrity. Think of the "ball" at the GA in the TJ District. Can we "dance" in a gathering convened in a racist context?

Our boycott wouldn't change much but may keep our souls and values intact which has its own value.


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