Presence Podcast: “Words For Now and Later: K is for KILLING” and Web Resources to Support Product Boycotts

“If you have ever watched power crumble, you know it happens very suddenly.

One day a wall is up and the next it is coming down…

“Dictionary of the Undoing” by John Freeman (p.70)

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If you’re too young to remember, here’s the reporting on the day that the Berlin Wall fell in 1989:

And if you don’t know the history of the repressive symbol that the Berlin Wall was, here’s another video:

I recorded this podcast episode more than a week ago, but I think it’s still as relevant as when I recorded it on Independence Day:

Words For Now and Later: K is for KILLING”

https://anchor.fm/presence/episodes/Word-For-Now-and-Later—K-is-for-KILLING-ega85a

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I mentioned a couple of inspiring items in the episode. The first has to do with the Washington NFL team. As you might have heard already, they are “retiring” the offensive mascot and are likely to replace it with a name that still has “red” in it. Two intriguing possibilities are: Red Tails and Red Wolves.

And the name of the site which memorializes those killed by lynching in the U.S. is called “The National Memorial for Peace and Justice” and it is located in Montgomery, Alabama. The site is a project of The Equal Justice Initiative – the organization which publishes the calendar which I cite each day in my “Pandemic Photo O’ Day” post.

https://museumandmemorial.eji.org/memorial

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Corporations are abstract beings and just as we keep our distance from sociopaths, so should we [keep our distance from] companies acting like them.

“Dictionary of the Undoing” by John Freeman (p.69)

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As I mentioned in the episode, the way to put pressure on corporations which are not supporting justice and the common good is by boycotting them and then letting their leaders know precisely why you/we are refusing to purchase their goods and/or services.

Since I recorded the episode, this exact type of economic action has begun against the Goya Foods Company (you’ve likely seen their bright yellow cans of beans and other Mexican foods.) because their company CEO said of POTUS#45 the other day: he’s an incredible builder and the country is “blessed” to have him as the leader.

What if you like Goya products, but want to support this boycott? There’s ways for you to replicate their foods on your own.

So, if you want to boycott products to send a message a corporation, here’s a few easy websites and apps to use.

Let’s start with websites accessed through a browser. Note: The sites/apps I’m featuring here are ones which slant progressive/liberal. If you want to engage in boycotts from a conservative/right wing viewpoint, I can’t help you there.

Progressive Shopper – Shows you the documented political contributions of a wide range of companies, sorted by product(s) and/or services provided. You also can download a browser extension which will give you background on companies as you browse and shop on the internet.

Goods Unite Us – Similar in function to the site above. This one has an easy to use list of corporations you might want to support (rather than avoid) for enacting socially good policies, e.g. helping to relieve the current Pandemic.

Ethical Consumer – Provides an interactive, easy to use list of already existing boycotts. You can pick the issues which interest you and find lists of companies/products to avoid.

OpenSecrets.org (from the Center for Responsive Politics) – offers information about corporations as well as other political information such as who is giving “Dark Money” and which corporations have PAC’s.

A few other good sites to gain information about political donations as well as general fact checking are Snopes.com

PolitiFact

FollowTheMoney.org – You can search for you representatives – at all levels – to see who donated to their campaign(s)

Finally, Ohio Checkbook is a new site which gives a wealth of information about state budgets and similar. Unless you live in Ohio, check to see if your state has a similar location for budgetary transparency.

Getting to the apps… First an article with a list of the “5 Best Political Apps”

Specially related to boycotting products is Buycott – which allows you to pick a “cause” or two and as you go through the store with your phone in hand, the app which tell you which products you may want to boycott.

Finally, for general political engagement, I recommend the apps Moxy (for the U.S.) and Global Citizen (for world-wide issues and causes)

Remember to be careful with app and the “permissions” you give them as some can be gathering data from you (unbeknownst to you). Not sure how they do this? Read this recent article for more insight – The Trump 2020 app is a voter surveillance tool of extraordinary power

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