It appears to be save to shop at Target again, and this time it isn’t like they are just donating money to some PAC to benefit a staunchly anti-LGBT candidate. The Minneapolis-based retail giant is selling t-shirts intended to raise money for the benefit of a group working to defeat an attempted Constitutional ban on marriage equality in that state.
This has, of course, angered opponents including Chuck Darrell, the spokesman for Minnesota for Marriage. He stated “Target is attacking traditional marriage, which is an incredibly misguided thing for them to have done. It’s an insult to the overwhelming majority of their customers.”
The T-shirt promotion will raise up to $120,000 for the Family Equality Council, a Washington-based group that is part of a Minnesota coalition pushing to defeat the constitutional amendment. The $12.99 shirts will be sold on Target’s website through June, or while supplies last. They come in four designs, emblazoned with words such as “harmony” and “pride.” Singer Gwen Stefani designed one shirt featuring a rainbow and a cloud that says, “LOVE IS LOVE.”
Target itself has not taken a position on the ballot initiative, and spokeswoman Molly Snyder stated that the promotion was organized by a group of gay employees and their allies. Target has, in the past, done similar benefits. The company’s statement reads “Target is pleased to be able to bring our guests products they want while, in turn, helping support the LGBT community through the donation of 100 percent of the purchase price to the Family Equality Council.”
Family Equality Council director Jennifer Chrisler stated that the t-shirt proceeds would fund the group’s work around the nation. She stated that “I know and understand what a big reaction that donation had two years ago, and I think they have taken steps, serious steps, to show that they understood that reaction. But I really think this is an extension of the longtime partnership we have had and their commitment to family.”
Darrell of Minnesota for Marriage (Bigotry) stated that they aren’t going to organize any action against Target, but has asked supporters to donate $12.99 to the group, and that donations are up since the t-shirts went on sale. Darrell stated “Just get out of this debate and do what they’re good at. Get out of the business of trying to redefine marriage.”
Of course, it would be nice if the various churches that are supporting Darrell’s group would go back to preaching and helping the poor and get out of the business of denying people their rights.