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Media Silent on Boycott as Ford's Sales Continue to Plunge

Ford's September sales are down 21 percent from last September, the largest decline in the past six months. The company's sales have declined almost continually for the past year and a half.


You'd think the media would want to report on all the possible reasons for the decline, but not in this case. 


In April, the Culture and Media Institute reported that the media are virtually ignoring the American Family Association (AFA) boycott of Ford Motor Company over Ford's pro-homosexual activism. 


Six months later, nothing has changed.  Nexis searches of the New York Times, Washington Post and USA Today from the last six months reveal no mention of the boycott as a factor in Ford's continual woes.  Similar searches of ABC, CBS and NBC revealed the same. 


Ford isn't the only domestic auto company to see losses in the past six months. General Motors sales plunged in June and July 2007, but bounced back in August.  GM's September sales pulled even with September 2006.  Chrysler's sales have fallen in four of the last six months, but nowhere near as far as Ford's.  In September, Chrysler was down from the previous year by 5.4 percent. 


ABC's Charles Gibson credited “the housing slump and high gas prices” for the particularly bad month that the Big Three endured in July 2007, but he didn't mention AFA's boycott.  Even Ford's $12.7 billion loss in 2006 wasn't enough to warrant a mention.


Since AFA began the boycott in March 2006, more than 750,000 people have signed a petition expressing their commitment to boycott Ford vehicles.  Ford's sales have sunk in 17 of the 19 subsequent months. 


Tom Blumer, a contributing editor at the Media Research Center's Newsbusters blogging site, pointed out in a September 10, 2007 blog, “every 2007 decline during the boycott period has been worse than the corresponding decline 12 months earlier.” 


AFA doesn't claim that the boycott is the sole reason for the sharp decline in Ford sales.  Ford has other problems.  The corporation labors under a staggering pension fund liability, and spends more per vehicle in worker benefits than foreign auto companies, as do all of the Big Three automakers. However, much more so than GM or Chrysler, Ford has made a point of pitching racy ads to a controversial demographic – the homosexual community — and funding homosexual “pride” events and organizations promoting same-sex “marriage.”  If sales reports are any indication, the strategy is costing them with a far bigger demographic: pro-family Americans. 


Even before the boycott began, AFA was biting into Ford sales.  Citing AFA's impact on revenues, 78 Texas Ford dealers signed on to a 2006 letter asking Ford to cease sponsoring homosexual activism.  Dealers across the South and Midwest have contacted AFA to try to distance themselves from the corporate pro-homosexual agenda.


Good business sense would say it's time to win back the customers Ford has lost by plunging into the pool of political correctness. Instead, Ford continues to sponsor homosexual events and organizations. 


According to AFA, the corporation has given tens of thousands of dollars in the past six months to support homosexual activism.  In August alone, Ford gave $30,000 to the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest homosexual activist organization.   Last spring, Ford gave $10,000 to Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG).  Ford gave another $10,000 in May to sponsor the 2007 Out and Equal Workplace Summit.  In June, Ford helped sponsor the Cleveland Lesbian-Gay-Bi-Trans Pride Parade and Festival and the 2007 Seattle Gay Pride Parade. 


Ford's management has made it clear that they plan to continue funding homosexual activism, and the media blackout on the boycott is providing cover. 


If the media were to report on the 750,000 people who have signed on to the boycott, and the dealers who are complaining to Ford, the company's shareholders might put a stop to Ford's pro-homosexual activism. 


Colleen Raezler is a research assistant at the Culture and Media Institute, a division of the Media Research Center.