Skip to comments.Mixed Reaction at Local Gay Bars Over #DumpStoli Campaign
Posted on 07/31/2013 11:46:15 AM PDT by nickcarraway
In case you havent heard, Russias a pretty terrible place to be if youre gayor even an ally. President Vladimir Putin just signed a law that makes it a jail-worthy offense to tout gay propaganda, which can be something as innocuous as wearing a rainbow T-shirt. In July, four Dutch tourists were arrested for simply asking some locals their views on same-sex relationships.
To protest the rampant homophobia some gay bars, including San Joses Splash Video Dance Bar, took author-activist Dan Savages lead in boycotting Russian vodka, particularly Stolichnaya, promoting their dissent online under the hashtags #dumpstoli and #dumprussianvodka. Chicagos biggest gay bay dumped the stuff last week, as did Moby Dicks in San Francisco. This week, bars in West Hollywood threatened to pour Russian-made vodkas down the gutter.
But the majority of South Bay gay barsfour out of five in San Jose, specificallyrefuse to follow suit. Luis Farmento, owner of Renegades on West Taylor Street in San Jose, considers the movement misguided.
I know that boycotts can be a powerful political statement for human rights, but this isnt well-researched, its not well-organized, its off the cuff, its just something to throw out there because of inflamed feelings and passions, says Farmento. People are letting their emotions get in the way.
While its great that Savages social media-fueled #dumpstoli campaign has drawn attention to the plight of gays in Russia, actually dumping Stoli on a wide scale can do more harm than good, Farmento insists.
Stoli is not the bad guy here, he says.
Stoli has a history of supporting the LGBT community, donating grant money and sponsoring events. Buzzfeed called the boycott slacktivism at its finest, a way to make a statement without demonstrably helping a cause and probably actually promoting more xenophobia than tolerance.
Locally, Stoli donated 2,500 whistles, condoms, safe sex pamphlets and bottles of lube to an LGBT anti-violence event organized by the charity-activist group Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence in San Francisco. That same group just backed out of a Stoli-sponsored event as part of the Dump Stoli boycott.
The brand isnt even Russian anymore, boycott critics point out.
The vodka brand split after the fall of the Soviet Union, leaving half to a Latvian operation and the other half in Russia. Theyre separate companies. The U.S., Canada and Australia gets their Stoli from Latvia, not Russia. Savage maintains that theres still a relationship with the two divisions.
The Olympics and its sponsor corporations might be a better target for a boycott, some say. The 2014 winter Olympic games are slated to take place in Sochi, where the Russian government is spending billions on an Olympic village with help from sponsors like McDonalds, GE and Coca-Cola.
If you get corporate sponsors to pull support, Russia will be left holding the bill, Farmento notes. I find it hypocritical that some of the bars calling for a Stoli boycott are still using Coca-Cola products to mix cocktails with. Theres a smarter way to get your point across.
well if 2% of us buy a bottle that would more than make up the difference
I am in the mood for a Clamato -n- Stoli right now, as a matter of fact.
If it’s not Russian, it’s not real vodka.
The vodka stock is probably already paid for.
Did you read the whole article? “...Stoli donated 2,500 whistles, condoms, safe sex pamphlets and bottles of lube to an LGBT anti-violence event organized by the charity-activist group Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence in San Francisco...”
I’ll take my business elsewhere.
Somebody's got their knickers in a twist - I say no knickers - more Stoli!
I’m buying Russian vodka this weekend.
If its not Russian, its not real vodka.
Because the proceess of distillation is different the world over.
I’ll have to make it a point to purchase a bottle on the way home, today...
Hey, can we get the EPA and the guys in the moon suits to clean up the mess? All that hazardous material. Conservatives wouldn’t get away with such stuff.
I’ll bet there are dozens of federal agencies that can be involved with this.
I’ll stop off and pickup a bottle tomorrow ....
For Russia !!!
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