Saturday, December 15, 2007

Speaking in Dollars

I've been reading Randy Alcorn's thought-provoking book, Money, Possessions and Eternity, and in it he says something I've never really thought about before.

He discusses how some Christians refuse to purchase the products of companies that support and/or promote activities they disapprove of, and how doing so makes more financial sense than just simply selling any stock they might have in those same companies. He reasons that when you sell stock in the offending company and convince others to do so, you put that stock back on the market at a lower price, which just makes the stock more attractive to someone else, and can actually profit the company. But when you choose not to buy products from the company, it directly affects the company's profits, its bottom line. When large numbers of people choose to boycott a company's products, they can really make an impression on the decision-makers in that company.

So, for example, if you're offended by the anti-Christian bias of the movie "The Golden Compass," (see this month's newsletter for the specifics), it's understandable if you decide to sell any stock you own, including mutual funds, in New Line Cinema, producer of the movie. But to be most effective, you would want to boycott its movies, particularly "The Golden Compass."

While you're at it, you'd probably also want to boycott the companies promoting the movie with their own products. That list includes:

Barnes & Noble
Best Buy
FAO Schwarz
Circuit City

At this time of year, it would be pretty hard to avoid all those companies, particularly if you buy gifts of books or entertainment. And for homeschoolers, it eliminates all the largest sources of new books. But it could be done, if you were really determined; you would also want to notify the companies of your intentions in order to really make your point. Then you could go to local booksellers or homeschool businesses to buy your books, and local stores to buy your entertainment (if Best Buy and Circuit City haven't already forced them out of business.) Just a thought.

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