Macy’s, the iconic department store, has stood its ground against a boycott threat from One Million Moms, an astroturf project of the American Family Association, a group known for its anti-LGBTQ+ stance. Despite the group’s claim of significant influence, it has been revealed to have only one employee and no actual members, significantly overstating its leverage.
Inclusion in the Thanksgiving Parade
This year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, a beloved tradition since 1924, is set to feature two notable Broadway actors, Alex Newell of “Shucked” and Justin David Sullivan from “& Juliet”. Both actors are nonbinary, and their inclusion has sparked the recent controversy with One Million Moms. The parade, a staple of American culture, has long been a platform for diverse representation, with Broadway shows being a part of the floats for over half a century.
A Pattern of Failed Boycotts
The history of One Million Moms is marked by numerous failed attempts to boycott various companies and media for their support or representation of LGBTQ+ rights. Their targets have ranged from television shows to commercials featuring same-sex couples, and even children’s books with LGBTQ-inclusive themes. However, these boycotts have seldom resulted in significant impact, often only gathering a few thousand supporters.
Macy’s Response and Broader Implications
In response to the threatened boycott, Macy’s has maintained a stance of inclusion and diversity. Marketing experts, like NYU professor Scott Galloway, suggest that Macy’s could use this as an opportunity to reinforce their commitment to these values, turning the attempted boycott into a positive affirmation of their brand ethos.
This scenario with Macy’s and One Million Moms underscores the changing dynamics in corporate America’s approach to social issues. Companies are increasingly finding that inclusivity and support for minority rights align with both their values and the expectations of their customer base, reducing the effectiveness of boycotts from groups like One Million Moms.