In an apparent emulation of liberal techniques, conservative activists are boycotting a classic American business that employs American workers because they don’t like the political speech of someone linked to the company.
Breitbart News editor-at-large Ben Shapiro, a senior fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, wrote an introductory piece for the Freedom Center’s new website TruthRevolt calling for a boycott of Ritz Crackers, whose parent company Nabisco, owned by Mondelez International, advertises on the MSNBC program “Politics Nation with Al Sharpton.” As Shapiro noted, Sharpton has previously used the term “cracker” in a racial context.
Sharpton’s high-profile race-baiting has been a recurring fixture in the backdrop of American popular culture since the 1980’s. Sharpton’s free speech, like Shapiro’s, is protected by the First Amendment.
Nevertheless, Shapiro proved Monday that indignant petition-writing is no longer just a pastime of the left.
“If you disagree with Ritz Crackers that Sharpton’s program is ‘tasteful,’ ‘believable,’ and generally acceptable in terms of social or community standards – if you do not think that Sharpton’s brand of divisive racism ought to be sponsored by Ritz Crackers – please click here to sign our petition, call the offices of Mondelez International at (855)535-5648, and tweet @RitzCrackers with hashtag #SharptonsCrackers,” Shapiro wrote.
“Mondelez International is hardly the only major brand to support Sharpton with their dollars. Other advertisers have included Nissan, Cymbalta, Depend, Nissan [sic], Toyota, Nationwide Insurance, V-8, AARP, Alleve, among many others,” Shapiro wrote.
As of early Tuesday morning, the petition had already met its goal of 1,000 signatures.
Nabisco, headquartered in East Hanover, New Jersey, was founded in 1898. It makes Oreos, Wheat Thins, and Nutter Butters. It also partners on promotional accounts with NASCAR, another iconic American brand.
Nabisco’s Chicago factory is the largest bakery in the world, employing more than 1,500 American workers right here in the United States.
Mondelez International is based in Deerfield, Illinois. It employs more than 100,000 people across the world.
But Ben Shapiro suggested that conservatives should boycott, and therefore damage, this company because he finds Al Sharpton’s speech to be offensive.
Shapiro has blamed atheism and secularism for recent Republican election losses. I blame his petition.
As a self-styled voice of the conservative youth, Shapiro proves that shrill Gen-Y outrage, an effective political tactic of the left, can be used on the conservative side, as well. Liberal pundits score victimization points by accusing Republicans of racism and sexism and homophobia, so Shapiro figures he might as well do the same thing right back.
But who are the poor offended victims here? Which minority group is the aggrieved party in Shapiro’s narrative? The answer: conservatives.
In Ben Shapiro’s world, those who subscribe to the political ideology of Ronald Reagan are now part of a victimized group.
I disagree. Go look at the 1984 electoral map. That wasn’t that long ago.
Shapiro wants TruthRevolt to be a right-wing Media Matters, which is a liberal organization that flags conservative P.C. violations and feeds them to the perpetually outraged liberal media.
These tactics are completely antithetical to the promotion of an attractive conservative brand.
I would encourage Mr. Shapiro to note the personal style of former GOP chairman Lee Atwater, who oversaw an irreverent Republican party in the late 1980s and early 1990s composed of millions of young men and women who gained first jobs during the Reagan years. He understood the freedom-loving personality type. He understood that people like to be able to say whatever they want.
Note the personal style of Newt Gingrich and Dick Armey as they galvanized the Republican forces in 1994, or of George W. Bush when he beat Gore in 2000.
These men were not asking for apologies. They weren’t getting offended and boycotting companies like liberals do. They were not victims. They were winners.
In 2013, Ben Shapiro told people on the Internet to boycott Nabisco because the company’s owner advertises on an MSNBC show. What a proud moment in conservative history.
Maybe Ben Shapiro can go up to Chicago and lead a rally outside the Nabisco factory. I hear the Reverends Al and Jesse are going to be doing something across the street.