Opinion: Boycott the red buckets this season

salvation army donation kettle

(Photo: Getty Images)

Washington Blade

The Salvation Army is one of the most recognized charities in the United States. What a lot of people, myself included until recently, do not realize is that the SA actively and institutionally works against people in the LGBTQ community. For this self styled “evangelical part of the universal Christian Church,” the homophobia is literally written into its handbook. For its position statement on LGBTQ individuals, “The Salvation Army believes […] that Christians whose sexual orientation is primarily or exclusively same-sex are called upon to embrace celibacy as a way of life.”

Mark Oppenheimer wrote a 2011 story for the New York Times about the SA turning away people because they are gay. While the SA has denied this, we’ve also seen them threatening to leave New York City altogether in 2004 if they were “forced” to abide by the law of requiring health benefits for employees’ same-sex partners. In 2012, we heard SA media relations official Major Andrew Craibe imply on national radio that gays should be put to death. When shopping, remember how you choose to spend (and donate) your money shows support for that organization; just make sure you’re supporting the right cause. Skip the red buckets and support an inclusive, non-discriminatory organization that truly wants to help everyone that comes through its doors.

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