We can’t pretend that sustainable clothing lives outside the realm of politics, thus it’s important to be well-informed about political and social issues.
When Governor Brewer signed a racist bill into law a few days ago, my immediate thought was, “Well knock Arizona off our vacation list.” In reality, outside of dreams of attending Spring Training every year, it’s rarely on our vacation list. Any boycott I would participate in would be of little effort. But there are plenty of people who are bound and determined to vacation elsewhere and take their conferences to another state. Even truck drivers are talking boycotts.
But who would we be hurting? I started to ask myself that question when I read From the Left question the boycott and recenter the debate on the workers of Arizona:
State tourism officials are worried. The Arizona Hotel and Lodging Association on Monday set up its own Facebook page, “Don’t Boycott AZ Tourism” with the tagline: “Don’t punish 200,000 tourism employees for politics.”
ASU’s Morrison Institute’s website states that more than ONE in FOUR workers in Arizona is Hispanic. YIKES!
Organizations which already have plans to be in Arizona are considering this issue closely. Not only do they wonder if the economic impact on them (canceling a contract) but also the impact on the very people we hope to support through a boycott.
How do we best support the people of Arizona?
Added to this “damned if we do, damned if we don’t” situation is the reality that Arizona is just the first step in a larger battle. Utah has already sent signals of joining in on this parade towards everyone needing to wear their birth certificate as an ID badge.
This isn’t going to blow over easily or quickly. President Obama and Congress may wish for it so they can address other issues, but he made a promise and Arizona and immigrant activists are calling his bluff. Your move Mr. President.