The politics of lattes

By AndrewC

Feb 26, 2007 5:42pm

Not long ago, Starbucks began featuring quotes on its cups. "THE WAY I SEE IT," is what the program is called.

The goal was to provoke conversation.

They have succeeded.

In March 2005, conservatives were upset that the roster of Starbucks’ writers was overwhelmingly liberal — Melissa Etheridge, Al Franken, Quincy Jones, Chuck D. "Of the 31 contributors listed on Starbucks’ Web site, only one, National Review editor Jonah Goldberg, offers a conservative viewpoint," WROTE the St. Petersburg Times at the time.

That same year, the conservative group Concerned Women for America BECAME ALARMED by "The Way I See It" #43, by Armistead Maupin, the gay author of the bestselling "Tales of the City."

"My only regret about being gay is that I repressed it for so long," Maupin writes. "I surrendered my youth to the people I feared when I could have been out there loving someone. Don’t make that mistake yourself. Life’s too damn short."

(Some were even offended by the use of the word "damn.")

Later that year some in the secular community took umbrage when Pastor Rick Warren offered "The Way I See It" #92:

"You are not an accident. Your parents may have not planned you but God did," Warren writes. "You were made by God and for God, and until you understand that, life will never make sense."

Now comes word that some in the abortion rights community are not psyched with "The Way I See It" #224, which offers a quote from DR. JONATHAN WELLS of the Discovery Institute, which promotes intelligent design theories and combats Darwinism.

"Darwinsim’s impact on traditional social values has not been as benign as its advocates would like us to believe," Wells writes. "Despite the efforts of its modern defenders to distance themselves from it’s baleful social consequence, Darwinism’s connection with eugenics, abortion, and racism is a matter of historical record. And the record is not pretty."

Myself, I don’t know if I need provocation when I need coffee. I mainly need caffeine.

Thoughts?

– jt

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