Condomologist

all things condoms

Be careful…with your activism

Posted by Condomologist on February 13, 2009

Yesterday, in 4 cities across the country, folks protested what they considered unfair condom policies at certain CVS drugstores. The loose coalition of local activists, headed up by Change to Win, are upset that CVS locks up some of its condoms at stores in poorer, mostly minority neighborhoods and not at others. I’m all for better access to condoms, and in a perfect world, they’d all be free and they would be hanging next to the breath mints and People magazine and Reeses Peanut Butter Cups in the checkout line.  But the world isn’t perfect, such that in poorer neighborhoods all across Philadelphia — one of the cities in which protests took place and where I live — there’s a plexiglass wall between you and the cashier to buy a pack of smokes or some Chinese food. What bothers me about these protests is the inference of CVS being racist. Protest all you want, and if it’s successful in freeing the condoms, I’ll rejoice. But every time I go to buy my outrageously expensive Mach 3 razor blades and they’re locked up, I assume it’s due to issues of theft, not the neighborhood I live in. CVS may be terrible — I don’t know — when it comes to labor issues and other unfair practices, but my guess is their #1 goal is profit, so locking up condoms doesn’t help them one bit on that front. Call it unfortunate, call it a public health necessity, but don’t play the race card here.

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One Response to “Be careful…with your activism”

  1. Nice link and coding additions to the site, Jonathan. Looks like I missed yesterday’s NYC protest. I checked out the CVS protest site and delighted in these

    http://curecvsnow.org/fileadmin/templates/ver1/images/cure-cvs-valentine.pdf

    lovely valentines, as hilarious and useful message-spreaders. I may very well have to make use.

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