Boycotting Products of Those Whom You Disagree With

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Jonathan95

Puritan Board Freshman
So this Harry Potter game was featured yesterday and the internet blew up and was hating on it because the author of the books, J.K. Rowling, says that women are women, and men are men. So there was all of this talk of boycotting this game and all that. I've also heard of people doing similar things with Chick Fil A, and some other companies depending on their belief systems.

Is this something that should be done? Is it not possible to use/enjoy a product someone has made without it saying that you endorse their belief system? Do any of you practice this?

For the Harry Potter thing, I mean, I don't know. It's like saying I won't buy a book or watch a show written/produced by an unbeliever because I disagree with them. I don't know what I'd be able to consume at that point.

What are your thoughts?
 

arapahoepark

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
Depends. I don't think we could possibly boycott everything or track exactly where our money goes. Might as well become a mountain man. I don't think its wrong, perhaps it's even righteous, especially if its explicitly promoting a Christless and abhorrent agenda. Until recently, I had forgotten about Gillette but doing more research, I plan to buy better, albeit more expensive, shaving cream.
 

Joshua

Administrator
Staff member
Do what you want (and rightly-informed conscious permits/requires). Do not expect others, necessarily, to have to so do.

P.S. - I'd love to be a mountain man, but it's difficult getting the saints at my local chapter of Zion to sign up.
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
Do any of you practice this?

Often, but not necessarily to make a statement. And it is not particularly rigid.

But I tend not to buy things from companies that take overt political stances against my values. I don't look into what owners do on their private time, but if they get on some kind of bandwagon and crusade in favor of ungodly causes, I go elsewhere.

There once was a time, in the 80s and 90s, when I would not buy anything made in China because of slavery and their one-child laws. But that pretty much went by the wayside when it became impossible to do.

Until recently, I had forgotten about Gillette but doing more research, I plan to buy better, albeit more expensive, shaving cream.

I don't know about that issue, but Williams Shaving Soap is a lot cheaper than any of the canned lotions. $1.50 lasts me months. And I think, with a decent brush and hot water, it's much nicer. Nothing political about it ;)
 

JHoffmanJr

Puritan Board Freshman
I was having this conversation recently with some friends of mine. I have A few thoughts, but it is a complex consideration for sure. Here are two thoughts I’d like to share:

1.) People tend to not “boycott” or associate with companies and or products because of the argument that it would be impossible to avoid or boycott all companies they disagreed with. I do Not think convenience is a very good argument.

2.) Scripture gives us some pretty “extreme” methods of distancing ourselves from sin. So depending on the situation we are considering to avoid or boycott, i think This should be taken into consideration.

SDG

So this Harry Potter game was featured yesterday and the internet blew up and was hating on it because the author of the books, J.K. Rowling, says that women are women, and men are men. So there was all of this talk of boycotting this game and all that. I've also heard of people doing similar things with Chick Fil A, and some other companies depending on their belief systems.

Is this something that should be done? Is it not possible to use/enjoy a product someone has made without it saying that you endorse their belief system? Do any of you practice this?

For the Harry Potter thing, I mean, I don't know. It's like saying I won't buy a book or watch a show written/produced by an unbeliever because I disagree with them. I don't know what I'd be able to consume at that point.

What are your thoughts?
 

83r17h

Puritan Board Freshman
Is it not possible to use/enjoy a product someone has made without it saying that you endorse their belief system?

Do what you want (and rightly-informed conscious permits/requires).

I think it's certainly possible, and that Joshua is on the right track with what conscience allows. I'd argue that knowledge plays a major role - if there's a knowledge that such and such a product is being used to contribute to an immoral cause (ex: a fundraiser supporting an abortion clinic), then we ought not partake either. I would look to 1 Corinthians 10:25-29 for the principle. Without asking questions, get the product and use it. If informed that the product is dedicated to evil, then do not.

Not that one should make one's self purposefully ignorant, but I think that I ought not go inquiring after the faults of those manufacturing or selling a product as a factor in the decision to purchase. If something is announced, we listen, not plug our ears. But we don't call up the inquisition when there is no announcement (although, no one would expect that :))

Another interesting line of reasoning could be pursued about the nature of the economic exchange and what is being said by it. Does an exchange of goods / currency say anything or imply anything about beliefs? It is simply a statement that the labor of another is worth a certain amount to you, and you are paying for that labor. Certainly you don't employ only those who agree with your beliefs (with the exception of religious organizations), so why would this be different? I would be curious y'all's thoughts on this line of reasoning as well.

Perhaps trade between Israel and other nations can also be examined - does anyone know anything about this?
 

SeanPatrickCornell

Puritan Board Sophomore
I think that if it was ok to buy meat in the meat markets of Corinth knowing that it was probably sacrificed to idols (and that the money you spend on it would no doubt go towards financing even more wickedness), then I think it's ok to buy products from modern companies knowing full well that they are going to use the money they get from you to promote wickedness.
 

W.C. Dean

Puritan Board Sophomore
Do what you want (and rightly-informed conscious permits/requires). Do not expect others, necessarily, to have to so do.

P.S. - I'd love to be a mountain man, but it's difficult getting the saints at my local chapter of Zion to sign up.
Here in old Virginny there is an RPCGA in the hills, in a tiny town.
 

C. M. Sheffield

Puritan Board Senior
I tend not to buy things from companies that take overt political stances against my values. I don't look into what owners do on their private time, but if they get on some kind of bandwagon and crusade in favor of ungodly causes, I go elsewhere.
My thoughts exactly. I'm happy to do business with a company run by liberals so long as they aren't shoving in my face or worse, telling me they don't want my business. When companies have done this, I have respected their wishes and spent my money elsewhere.
 

Reformed Covenanter

Puritanboard Commissioner
Generally speaking, it is a matter of prudence whether or not to buy from certain companies. It may be prudent to join an organised boycott of a company in order to use the market to punish them for supporting certain causes. I would stop short, however, of making such a boycott a matter of conscience, as it goes beyond scripture and it is virtually impossible to hold such a position consistently.
 

W.C. Dean

Puritan Board Sophomore
I personally think boycotting massive, international billionaire industries is often frivolous but is beneficial on a local level. If a local business says or does something you and/or church find insulting to God, it is prudent to show that business how you feel by refraining to shop there.
 

Andrew35

Puritan Board Freshman
This issue is very frustrating to me. I'm generally opposed to boycotts and moral panics. Cultural conservatives have abused them in the past for frivolous reasons, and often just end up looking silly.

But now I see US industries and corporations with hypocritical or virtually no ethical principles (Disney, Apple, CNN, the NBA, etc.) and how they target cultural conservatives with impunity, take the side of our cultural Leftists, wherever possible -- and then go crawling and groveling to Beijing, or writing puff pieces about for-real evil dictators around the world (provided they're communists).

I see something not just morally wrong in this behavior, but practically treasonous. I feel like the proper thing would be a consumer response to starve these companies (as a bonus, maybe we'd get some better cultural products on offer), and yet now there seems to be a lack of consumer will.

Further, I wouldn't want to place this on anyone's conscience as a Christian because I don't feel that's valid -- even though I feel quite strongly some kind of consumer response is the right thing to do. And as others have mentioned, the way things are economically intertwined these days, how much good would it actually do? It would require a massive backlash.

All told, I'm not sure what to think. As for myself, I'm currently trying to avoid using these products where possible.
 
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Brian Withnell

Puritan Board Junior
I'm going to be wild here ... I totally get the passages on meat sacrificed to idols (it is okay to buy from unregenerate) and say there is another passage, same book that would say it is okay to buy from Godless people, but it would be appropriate to boycott those in the church.

1 Corinthians 5:9-13
I have written you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— not at all meaning the people of this world who are immoral, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters. In that case you would have to leave this world. But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.

What business is it of mine to judge those outside the church? Are you not to judge those inside? God will judge those outside. “Expel the wicked man from among you.”
 

convicted1

Puritan Board Freshman
A year or two ago my wife and I boycotted McD's after they put rainbows on their packaging during _______ pride month. We haven't bought one thing from them since then and never intend to ever again. Same with C-F-A after the stunt they pulled.

I was told Twitter was supporting the Cuties movie and the evidence I saw seemed quite compelling, so I nuked my Twitter account. I know we cannot boycott everything, but we do need to draw a line in the sand somewhere.
 

Ben Zartman

Puritan Board Sophomore
A year or two ago my wife and I boycotted McD's after they put rainbows on their packaging during _______ pride month. We haven't bought one thing from them since then and never intend to ever again. Same with C-F-A after the stunt they pulled.

I was told Twitter was supporting the Cuties movie and the evidence I saw seemed quite compelling, so I nuked my Twitter account. I know we cannot boycott everything, but we do need to draw a line in the sand somewhere.
How is this different from the "cancel culture" that's being decried in other places on this forum? Some ladies from our church, while mocking openly the "Gone With the Wind" cancellation as silly and frivolous, have now cancelled their netflix accounts because of some other show that is available. Am I missing something? What is different?
 

Jonathan95

Puritan Board Freshman
How is this different from the "cancel culture" that's being decried in other places on this forum? Some ladies from our church, while mocking openly the "Gone With the Wind" cancellation as silly and frivolous, have now cancelled their netflix accounts because of some other show that is available. Am I missing something? What is different?

Cancelling means you want to tear a thing or person down and obliterate it/them from society. Christians should want to do this when it comes to wickedness obviously. The example of boycotting McDonald's given above isn't that. Personally abstaining from a product and seeking to have it despised in the eyes of everyone around us are two different things.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
The Leftists engaged in cancel culture want to wipe their enemies off the face of the earth. That's not necessarily the case here (though it probably is how I view the pedophiles at Netflix).

The glory of the free market is that I have a right not to buy something.
 

Andrew35

Puritan Board Freshman
The Leftists engaged in cancel culture want to wipe their enemies off the face of the earth. That's not necessarily the case here (though it probably is how I view the pedophiles at Netflix).

The glory of the free market is that I have a right not to buy something.
Yeah. While I agree the distinction might be a bit fuzzy at times, there's clearly a difference between "cancel culture" and just voting with your feet.
 

Ben Zartman

Puritan Board Sophomore
So the difference is then simply between cancelling your own netflix account and demanding that everyone do so as well?
 

83r17h

Puritan Board Freshman
While I agree the distinction might be a bit fuzzy at times, there's clearly a difference between "cancel culture" and just voting with your feet.

So the difference is then simply between cancelling your own netflix account and demanding that everyone do so as well?


How do these distinctions sound?

Abstaining: passive resistance, does not seek others to join, does not attack persons.

Boycotting: active resistance, seeks others to join, does not attack persons.

Cancelling: active resistance, seeks others to join, attacks persons.
 

convicted1

Puritan Board Freshman
How is this different from the "cancel culture" that's being decried in other places on this forum? Some ladies from our church, while mocking openly the "Gone With the Wind" cancellation as silly and frivolous, have now cancelled their netflix accounts because of some other show that is available. Am I missing something? What is different?

This is my opinion only, and in no way reflects those of others, nor am I offended at those who still buy food from McD's and/or C-F-A.

I can not agree with the stances both franchises took. I can not in good conscience buy food from them, as I feel like its me giving approval of what they did. Others may not feel that way, and they are free to feel that way, and I am not offended by those who feel differently about this. I know that we cannot boycott everything, but we do need to pick and choose are battles. Just like any franchise I find out donates to Planned Parenthood. They will never see another dime of our money. We have to pick and choose which hills are worth dying on. Some ppl have different hills than I and my wife do. And I do not feel hard at them for not having the same hills we do. :)
 

Ben Zartman

Puritan Board Sophomore
This is my opinion only, and in no way reflects those of others, nor am I offended at those who still buy food from McD's and/or C-F-A.

I can not agree with the stances both franchises took. I can not in good conscience buy food from them, as I feel like its me giving approval of what they did. Others may not feel that way, and they are free to feel that way, and I am not offended by those who feel differently about this. I know that we cannot boycott everything, but we do need to pick and choose are battles. Just like any franchise I find out donates to Planned Parenthood. They will never see another dime of our money. We have to pick and choose which hills are worth dying on. Some ppl have different hills than I and my wife do. And I do not feel hard at them for not having the same hills we do. :)
Thanks for replying. Given Paul's statements in Corinthians about having to live in the world and even eat at the shambles, and the rest of the witness of Scripture regarding mortification of sin, don't you think a better hill to die on would be in the fight against your own personal sin and corruption? I fear that many Christians, in dying on hills about what other people are doing, saying, thinking, supporting, are distracted from the real battle with remaining corruption.
 

Andrew35

Puritan Board Freshman
Thanks for replying. Given Paul's statements in Corinthians about having to live in the world and even eat at the shambles, and the rest of the witness of Scripture regarding mortification of sin, don't you think a better hill to die on would be in the fight against your own personal sin and corruption? I fear that many Christians, in dying on hills about what other people are doing, saying, thinking, supporting, are distracted from the real battle with remaining corruption.
In some cases, these disparate goals might be attained with the same action. I.e., you might be weaning yourself from an unhealthy dependence on junk food/junk entertainment. ;)
 

EcclesiaDiscens.

Puritan Board Freshman
Personally my family boycotts things only in egregious cases since darn near every corporation is “woke” and supports sin in some fashion.

Such as a campaign at a locally owned coffee shop where “X percent of today’s proceeds goes to Planned Parenthood!” We don’t shop there and go instead to a different local coffee shop.

However we take great pains not to buy things made in China. Mostly due to the use of the slave labor of Christians and dissidents. It’s almost guaranteed that the pastor of Early Rain Covenant Church is slaving away in a labor camp.
 

chuckd

Puritan Board Sophomore
I think that if it was ok to buy meat in the meat markets of Corinth knowing that it was probably sacrificed to idols (and that the money you spend on it would no doubt go towards financing even more wickedness), then I think it's ok to buy products from modern companies knowing full well that they are going to use the money they get from you to promote wickedness.
If you were aware it was sacrificed (which the OP is assuming), then you should not eat it. 1 Cor. 10:28

Not because you know it was defiled or the sale was going to finance wickedness (your conscience), but because the seller sees a Christian buying sacrificed meat (his conscience) and encourages him to sin further. 1 Cor. 8:10

So I think if buying something today that culturally offends folks you are with, then simply abstain so that that offense does not put a stumbling block to the gospel for that person. 1 Cor. 9:12, 9:22-23, 10:32-33
 

ZackF

Puritan Board Graduate
Sometimes I think it is easier to do "buycotts". Find positive examples as you are able and minimize the use of other sources.
 

Jake

Puritan Board Senior
Sometimes I think it is easier to do "buycotts". Find positive examples as you are able and minimize the use of other sources.

This is how I think about it. I'm happy to try to support, for example, businesses that are closed on the Lord's Day, and am blessed to work for an employer that takes this stance. There are not enough options to do this exclusively.
 
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