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New Balance’s $500,000 Romney Donation: An Open Letter To Its Chairman

by Scott Rose on August 11, 2011

in Politics

Post image for New Balance’s $500,000 Romney Donation: An Open Letter To Its Chairman

New Balance Chairman Jim Davis has sparked outrage with his half-million dollar donation to Mitt Romney, an anti-gay Republican presidential candidate. Journalist Scott Rose explains why in this open letter to Davis.

Dear Jim and Anne Davis:

Because Mitt Romney signed the so-called “National Organization for Marriage” pledge to re-inforce and expand political persecution of LGBT Americans, I wanted to 1) explain why I am outraged and 2) explain why I am calling on you to denounce NOM’s pledge, and to ask for Mr. Romney to return your donation(s).

The National Organization for Marriage is an anti-LGBT hate group.  In May, it sponsored an anti-gay hate rally in The Bronx, during which a Christian extremist yelled through a megaphone at a mob of gay bashers that homosexuals are “worthy to death.”  NOM’s anti-gay hate rally was overseen by a vicious anti-gay politician, New York State Senator Ruben Diaz.  Senator Diaz’s district is marked by frequent occurrences of anti-gay hate crimes.  Last fall, a gang of anti-gay thugs sequestered gay victims and tortured them for several days.  Diaz said nothing.  I have heard stories from gay hate crime victims in Diaz’s district that when they tried to report to police that they had been gay bashed, the police laughed at them and wouldn’t even take the complaints.

That is an attitude which NOM actively seeks to perpetuate.  NOM’s Maggie Gallagher has fraudulently alleged that because of marriage equality in Europe, European civilization has ended.  She says such things, as though Barcelona, Rome and Paris were no longer viable cities.  She follows up such remarks by saying that marriage equality if made law in the U.S. will cause the downfall of American civilization.  That kind of anti-gay hate speech gets translated into the torture of many young gay people in the nation’s schools.  NOM and Gallagher actually are opposed to anti-gay bullying policies that specify sexual orientation and gender expression as protected groups, because, they claim, that can only lead to acceptance of homosexual persons.

I want you to understand very clearly why it is so important for school anti-bullying policies to specify that sexual orientation and gender expression are protected groups.  A very influential Tea Party activist and blogger, Dr. Rich Swier, says that anti-gay bullying is a “healthy” form of peer pressure.  You see, where school districts are dominated by anti-gay bigots who think that way . . and where those school districts’ anti-bullying policies don’t specify sexual orientation and gender expression as protected groups . . the school boards, administrators and teachers actually themselves will bully gay students and never be punished for that bullying, because they are defining the bullying as “healthy peer pressure.”

You could redeem New Balance’s company reputation right now by publicly condemning the NOM pledge and asking for Mitt Romney either to renounce the pledge himself or return your donations to his presidential campaign.  I find wholly unacceptable your attempt to sweep New Balance’s crisis under the rug by saying that your donation to Romney was a “personal” donation that had nothing to do with the New Balance company.

I think you might have had the LGBT community confused with a bunch of cowardly idiots when you tried make this crisis go away in that manner.  You apparently wanted consumers to think “Oh well if it was only his personal $500K and nothing to do with the New Balance company he owns, then we can buy his shoes in confidence that none of the money will ever go to re-inforce the political persecution of gay human beings.”

I have no idea whether you are going to choose to do the right thing, Jim and Anne, but I can promise you that if you don’t, I together with LGBT rights activists around the world will do everything we can to see New Balance boycotted.



Scott Rose

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{ 1 comment }

demandequality August 11, 2011 at 10:19 pm

Everyone needs to post this open letter to
and attach it to an email with your own comments to:

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