Friday, March 25, 2011

Target sues marriage equality group from asking supporters to sign petitions

In San Diego today, a court case is set to begin in which Target Corporation is suing an activist organization, Canvass For A Cause.

CFAC is being sued by Target to block them from asking customers outside Target stores to sign petitions to help the cause of marriage equality. Target has stated that they have no problem with the "message" - but say they have had  complaints by customers who don't like to be bothered exiting the stores.

But CFAC says that other groups - from veterans organizations to the Girl Scouts - are allowed to approach customers and that Target doesn't seem to have a problem with those groups.

CFAC also says all of their volunteers are trained to not be bothersome or rude. CFAC has asserted that Target, which has a history of anti-gay bias, is only trying to shut down organizations that support causes Target opposes. CFAC feels this is primarily a First Amendment issue.

Earlier this month, Lady Gaga cancelled a marketing deal with Target when discussions on improving relations between the LGBT community and Target failed to come together. Lady Gaga has been an out-spoken advocate for LGBT rights and equality.

Interestingly, there are reports that Target's history of anti-gay bias has not kept Ricky Martin, recent GLAAD honoree, from developing his own marketing deal with Target. Ricky and Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson recently performed in Minneapolis for 10,000 Target store managers. This is a common practice when recording artists want to encourage Target stores to sell and promote their music.

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