The tragedy of the 17 year old American teenager, Trayvon Martin, continues to tug on the hearts of Americans across the US. Rallies, Marches, and Vigils are being organized in many states. People are taking a second look at Florida’s and their own states Self-Defense laws, and trying to determine whether or not these laws do more harm than good, but while all of this is taking place there is another phenomenon going on as well. People are buying products (Skittles, Arizona Iced Tea, and hoodies) to demonstrate their outrage, support, and express solidarity.
While these companies are definitely benefiting from the surge of increased sells, some people have started to express concern about whether or not these companies are donating a portion of their proceeds to the family. Of course, the family is accumulating a variety of expenses dealing with this tragedy. While, I am sure some of their expenses are getting covered by someone, not all of them are. As a result, Skittles, Arizona Iced Tea, and companies that make hoodies have been put in an interesting position overnight and have released statements that I can respect and understand.
Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, a division of Mars, Inc. who produces Skittles released the following statement, Jennifer Jackson-Luth a spokeswoman for Wrigley stated “We are deeply saddened by the news of Trayvon Martin’s death and express our sincere condolences to his family and friends.”We also respect their privacy and feel it inappropriate to get involved or comment further as we would never wish for our actions to be perceived as an attempt of commercial gain following this tragedy.” (Source)
According to an email to HLN from Jackie Harrington, the global communications director for Arizona Iced Tea’s (which is now owned by Hornell Brewing Co., Inc.,) the company would like to “express our sincere sympathies to Trayvon’s family and friends. At this time, we will make no further comment as we wish to respect the family’s privacy and grieving time and feel it is inappropriate to become involved in a private family matter.” (Source)
I think this is something people have to think about, “Is it worth buying these products which increases these companies bottom line or putting the money into a different source like a scholarship fund or foundation for young boys like Trayvon.” This is just something to think about. Of course, if you read my blog, you would know where my heart lies, in education, use this opportunity to help young American boys just like Trayvon.
*If you feel compelled to purchase them, I definitely do not advocate doing so in Sanford, Florida where this tragedy took place.