I am one hundred percent sure I am going to get some negative feedback regarding this post. But, I am going to post anyway.

This month has been pride month and everywhere you look there is a pride symbol flashing at you. There have been articles, meme postings and opinions of thousands on both sides of the fence. Well, yesterday I posted something on social media regarding everyone who is outraged and boycotting Starbucks because of their supposed stance or support with the LGBTQ communities. The article being shared was false news and upon further investigation, I discovered the pure blatant falseness myself. Let me tell you if you are going to stop buying from Starbucks because of their support to LGBTQ community and marriage equality you better be prepared to change not only where you buy your coffee, but where you shop in general, what medications you take, where you buy your clothes and what movies, television shows and commercials you and your family watch. If you are standing your ground with one or maybe two companies, don’t hurt yourself why straddling the fence while tiptoeing on your soapbox.

Let me start by saying, I am a straight, conservative republican Christian woman, who believes marriage was designed for one man and one woman. No, I have not changed my support on any LGBTQ issues. I am that crazy lady who thinks biblical submission is a good thing. Does this make me a homophobe, do I hate, discriminated against or disown anyone who identifies as a person who is LGTBQ, no!! Why? Because, as a Christian, I am called to love and share Christ with EVERYONE! No just people who believe the same as me, look the same as me or live the same as me.

So, after my Christian brothers and sisters have decided to boycott and make a public spectacle over Starbucks and their support of the LGBTQ community I decided I would be doing a lot of investigating myself. And, I have bad news for you. When you decided to boycott Starbucks over their support you forgot one thing, and I have to ask you a question. You are boycotting due to your religious beliefs, spiritual beliefs, and personal convictions? Well, and of course as someone who has been called to holiness you are called to stand up for those beliefs? Which is commendable. However, what you forgot is everywhere else you shop, and everywhere else you go that not only supports but donates to the LGBTQ community. It’s not just Starbucks it’s pretty much everywhere. With all my investigation this is what I found out. In 2017, 407 businesses achieved a perfect score of 100 on the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), a survey distributed by the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) that measures support for LGBT employees and the broader LGBT community. That high score is impossible to achieve without having trans-inclusive health-care and anti-discrimination policies that include gender identity.

In other words, money spent at these businesses helps to normalize a culture in which transgender people are seen as valid and worthy of special protection. These 407 companies aren’t exactly mom-and-pop shops, either

Have you heard of Pfizer? Well most have, did you know they are one of the top places to be employed by if you identify as LGTBQ? Not only that they donate thousands to causes that benefit the LGTBQ! If you don’t know who Pfizer is let me educate you. They are a company that manufactures and sells Advil, Celebrex, Chantix, Chapstick, Depo-Medrol, Depo-Provera, Dimetapp, Diflucan, Flagyl, Lyrica, Lipitor, Neurontin, Preparation H, Robitussin, Viagra, Zoloft, Ativan, and azithromycin, As well as hundreds of more pharmaceuticals.

Let’s say you are relatively healthy and do need pharmaceuticals. Have you heard of Johnson & Johnson? I know you have, even Johnson & Johnson is in third world countries. Do you have any of these products in your home? Acuvue, Aveeno, Benadryl, Band-Aid brand, Ben-gay, Caladryl, Clean & Clear products, Destin, Efferdent, Immodium, KY Jelly products, Lactaid, Listerine, Lubriderm, Monistat, Motrin, Mylanta, Neosporin, Neutrogena products, Nicoderm, Nicorette, One Touch diabetes products, Pepcid, Reach toothbrush products, Rembrandt, Rogaine, Rolaids, Splenda, Stay Free, Sudafed, Tylenol, Tuck, Visine, and Zyrtec. There are hundreds I haven’t list here as well. So, you can by generic options, by the way, those companies such as Janssen, are owned by Johnson & Johnson too. And, Pfizer generics are Greenstone products also owned by Pfizer. So, you get the picture?

Let’s say you are going to Camp Meeting, on a family-friendly vacation or to a youth convention. If you stay at Hyatt, Hampton, Marriott, Starwood, Hilton, MGM, Caesars, Sonesta Hotels, Wyndham hotels, or any subsidies such as Blackstone group owned like La Quinta, Days Inn, or Super 8 you might as well buy that Starbucks drink. You and I both know how many times we eat on these church trips and family vacays, and where can we go to back our stance against Starbucks? Well, here is a list of places you can’t go Chipotle, McDonald’s, Just Salad, Shake Shack, Burger Kind, Dutch Brothers Coffee, Olive Garden, Panera Bread, Magnolia Bakery (not in Waco), Baked by Melissa, Dylan’s Candy, Sugarfina, and Bouchon Bakery to name a few. Don’t stop for those carbonated beverages or water bottles either. Like, Coke products including Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Dasani, Vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Del Valle, Georgia and Gold Peak tea. Don’t forget to include Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Gatorade, 7 Up (outside the U.S.), Tropicana Pure Premium orange juice, Mist Twist, SoBe Lifewater, Tropicana juice drinks, AMP Energy, Naked Juice, and Izze. Let’s not even get into snacks, I will just say those Kind bars, Nabisco, Kraft, General Mills, and any Hershey products are a no go. Let’s say those trips are a little far and you decide to fly forget flying with United, American, Southwest, Delta, Alaska, or Spirit Airlines I mean if we’re keeping in line with our Starbucks boycott and don’t forget Boeing who manufactured all those planes that get you from A to B.

Enjoy your cell phone? AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Metro PCS, Straight Talk or Sprint? How about your insurance company? State Farm, Nationwide, All-State, Metlife, Liberty Mutual, or Esurance? What kind of computer, phone, or internet do you use? Dell, Apple, Intel, Samsung, Microsoft, Google, Bose, or Comcast? If you have a credit card, Get used to paying with cash because you will have to shred your credit cards. Mastercard, Visa, American Express, and Discover all support the LGTBQ. Oh, forget having those prescriptions filled at Walgreens, CVS, and Walmart too.

Do you like washing your clothes in a creek? Because, Maytag, GE, and whirlpool all go against your beliefs too. I also hope you can sew because you can’t buy clothes at JCPenney, Sears, Nike, Adidas, American Eagle, Banana Republic, Gap, Levis, Sperry’s, J Crew, Abercrombie & Fitch, Under Armor, Urban Decay, Nordstrom, or, of course Target, again nor can you purchase food sold by General Mills, Nabisco, Heinz, Kellogg, Kraft, or even Kroger.  Oh, and don’t forget all I mean all social media outlets, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat all support and are in favor of LGBTQ and marriage equality.

After withdrawing from public life and purchasing most of your things in cash from local mom and pop shops, you will probably find yourself in need of some home entertainment. But if you oppose LGTBQ friendly businesses, you will have to do without a DirecTV, Netflix, Hulu, or Sirius XM Radio subscriptions. The good news is you can watch movies but there’s a catch. Five of the six major film production companies—Sony, Disney, Universal, Paramount, and Warner Bros.—all have a 100 on the CEI.

So, am I telling you to turn your back on God or abandon your beliefs, absolutely NOT!! I wouldn’t do it. Am I saying to go to Pride events and wave a flag in support of what they believe? No. I am saying before you straddle the fence and become a hypocrite, do your homework. Yes, support local mom and pop shops, its good for the local economy. And, if they openly celebrate what you believe in is even better. But, being an uneducated idiot and failing to share God’s love, forgiveness and grace in the world is a bigger problem than shopping where you may run into someone who identifies as or buying from a company that supports LGBTQ. Be better than the average Christian.

Blessings, Hollie McCalip