“We stand here, collectively representing more than 1,000 churches here in Georgia – 1,000 churches, hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of parishioners or members,” Reverend Lee May of Transforming Faith Church in Decatur said, according to NBC News. “We stand together here to start this boycott.”
Rev. Timothy McDonald, founder of the African American Ministers Leadership Council, accused Home Depot of “being in business, building houses and apparently demolishing democracy”.
A Home Depot spokesman said the company “We have decided that the most appropriate approach for us is to further underline our statement that all elections should be accessible, fair and safe, and support broad turnout.”
It also seems to have decided that meeting proxies could be a risky look for its brand to advocate for the voting rights of all Americans. How Pastor Jamal Harrison Bryant of the New Birth Missionary Baptist Church near Atlanta said the GOP legislature passed the law “not for election fraud, but for voter turnout.”
The 98-page law contains a number of provisions restricting access to the ballot box, with provisions aimed at disproportionately disenfranchising color voters and democratic voters in general. It introduces new requirements for voter identification in order to vote by post, offers less time to request postal ballot papers, severely restricts access to dropboxes, effectively prohibits mobile polling stations, restricts voting via provisional ballot papers and makes it difficult to extend voting times, Outlaws who distribute food or water to people standing in line to vote, and most importantly, deprive state and local officials of the power to oversee elections, and instead turn it over to lawmakers in a state where Republicans are practical control all facets of government.
The clergy urged both Home Depot and GOP Governor Brian Kemp, who signed the legislation behind closed doors, to meet with them about adjustments to the law.
Kemp returned fire by telling Home Depot: “I have not asked to be in this political struggle and call it unfair to them, their families and their livelihoods to be targeted.“Home Depot has approximately 30,000 employees in Georgia.
But the clergy said Georgia was now a central point for the nation on the issue of voting rights.
“We’re here just because injustice is here, and we realize that Georgia is now the talking head for the entire nation,” Bryant said at the protest.
Like it or not, corporations will be forced to take moral positions as Republicans work aggressively to confuse democracy and curtail the rights of color voters across the country. If they stand on the verge of this right so that every US citizen can determine the leadership of this country, they will tacitly consent to the suppression of the voters.
And yes, companies have asked for this fight as soon as they have made large donations to individual politicians and political parties. If they can’t take the heat, they shouldn’t be in the kitchen.