Back on March 21st, we told people it was foolish to buy all those bags of Skittles, but few heeded the warning. In fact, most people refused to spread our message, that supporting private corporations as a symbol of social change was a bad idea.
As we’ve seen time and again, Axiom Amnesia read the writing on the wall correctly. We’ve now learned that Mars Incorporated, the manufacturers of Skittles, was (up until very recently) a member of ALEC, an organization that helped to make the “stand your ground” law a reality.
That’s right! The law that provided George Zimmerman with an excuse to remain free and uncharged for the murder of Trayvon Martin for 46 days was supported by the company who reaped the financial benefits of all the people who ran out and bought bags of Skittles as an attempted symbol of social justice.
Nobody wanted to share this message because it was extremely unpopular at a time when everyone was coming together to shed light on a tremendous injustice–the murder of unarmed 17-year-old, Trayvon Martin, by George Zimmerman. People seemed to think that speaking out against the purchase of Skittles was in opposition to the idea of justice for Trayvon. Of course, nothing could have been further from the truth.
Here’s an excerpt from our article:
There’s something that just DOES NOT feel right about the attempted meme here. It is like taking a serious issue and reducing it to a damn mockery. We don’t wanna chuckle when we think of how Trayvon Martin died. His cause is worth more than that to all of us.
Let’s be clear that we FULLY support the cause of gaining justice for Trayvon–that is not in question. What we are questioning is the support of a private corporation as an unintended consequence of trying to make a social statement. […]
With all that money, people could surely do something besides help the rich get richer!
So no, Axiom Amnesia will not be buying any (insert brand name here) so they can fund a lobbying campaign against the interests of common people somewhere down the line or create more of those colorful advertisements that trick kids into an early lifestyle that can lead to diabetes and other ailments–not to mention that it makes this candy a symbol of social justice, which it is not.
THINK before you act!
Even one of Trayvon’s family members said she understood how buying Skittles was supporting not only Skittles, but the local and state governments who had mishandled the case. Despite this, she and many others continued to promote the idea of taking and posting photos wearing hoodies and holding Skittles and iced tea. We shook our heads and continued to speak out against the practice, but the deluge of non-thinking people with the lemming mentality of “follow the leader” was a greater force than logic and reason in the situation.
How Buying Skittles Funded ALEC And Stand Your Ground Laws
Chances are, you’ve never heard of ALEC. The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is a conservative lobby, made up of businesses and conservative legislators. Until this week, Wrigley/Mars Inc. was a member of this lobby, which took part in drafting the Stand Your Ground laws.
For many years, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has been a particularly influential organization that has promoted the agenda of corporate America and the political right in state legislatures nationwide, but about which the public has known little. ALEC’s members, who work together to draft model bills, consist of state legislators, who pay little to join, and corporations and trade associations, who pay hefty membership fees. These fees purchase influence over ALEC’s agenda and access to lawmakers.
Mars, just recently left ALEC, citing that they reviewed their budget and decided not to renew their membership. Yeah, right!
There are those who believe the reason provided by Mars, suggesting that they must care about the issues dear to them because they chose to leave ALEC. On the contrary, Mars is basically saying that they don’t care about the cause and issues related to the Martin case and the Stand Your Ground Laws. Of course we understand that the real reason they left is the same reason Coca-Cola, Pepsi-Co, Wendys, McDonalds, and Kraft broke away from ALEC–they didn’t want to face public scrutiny for being associated with the group who authored the now controversial laws. Mars followed public pressure and other corporations right on out the door, so that their future profits won’t be significantly impacted.
NewsOne Should Show Some Social Responsibly For Encouraging People To Buy Skittles
We already explained how NewsOne actively promoted the purchase of Skittles, encouraging people to mail empty bags to the Sanford Police Department to protest their handling of the Trayvon Martin case. We also discussed their irresponsibility in Episode 026: NewsNone of The Axiom Amnesia Theory with Heit & Cheri.
The video also addresses the fact that people are making money for private corporations, who don’t care about the community. The purchase of these products actually help to fund your own oppression, and this is yet another example of how we continue to advocate things that disempower us. Listen to an excerpt from that show below:
It will be interesting to see whether NewsOne will own up to their mistake, and acknowledge that it was ill-advised for people to purchase Skittles en masse. It’s possible that they might choose to completely ignore ALEC’s connection to Mars Inc. and the reasoning behind why the purchase of Skittles actually worked against those whom it was designed to help.
At a minimum, as a supposedly responsible news outlet, NewsOne should exercise better judgement in the future. Their listeners and readers deserve more from them.
The Dangers Of Bandwagonism And Not Thinking Before We Act
The root cause of the whole Skittles debacle is people letting their emotions overtake logic and choosing to jump on the bandwagon with little or no thought beforehand. People were outraged about the killing of an unarmed Trayvon Martin, who only had the Skittles and Arizona iced tea in in his possession at the time of his murder.
So, people started buying the Skittles and tea as a statement, and encouraging others (including children) to do the same–as if this was a positive ACTION, when it was in fact a negative REACTION. This points to why the notion of “just do something–anything” is a counterproductive approach to dealing with anything.
In the end, it would be comically ironic that Skittles of all things would be a symbol for justice were it not such a sad commentary on the thoughtless way in which so many of us approach things. When you think about it, if the Stand Your Ground laws are dangerous, then so are Skittles–after all they helped to fund them.
It should also be noted that those same people who were screaming for everyone to buy Skittles, posing in candid photos with them, and fought us tooth and nail for opposing this foolishness will undoubtedly be outraged about Mars’ connection to the Stand Your Ground laws. We hate to say, “We told you so…”
So we repeat, Axiom Amnesia will not be buying any (insert brand name here) so that the corporate entity can fund a lobbying campaign against the interests of common people.
Next time, maybe folks will learn to give just a few moments of consideration about the consequences of their seemingly harmless actions before they choose to follow a self-appointed leader.
Next time, maybe folks won’t go running like lambs to the slaughter after the latest meme disguised as social justice.
Next time maybe folks will pay closer attention when Axiom Amnesia tells you something is a bad idea. Maybe… But we doubt it.