Pros and Cons of Boycotting Arizona

Or of counter-boycotting--the "buycott"

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Backlash to Arizona's new anti-illegal immigration law is solidifying into calls for boycotts. But what's the best way to boycott an entire state? The Washington Post's Krissah Thompson reports some of the ideas, which include halting business travel to Arizona. Would this ultimately be an effective or wise way for opponents to express their dissent?

  • 'Boycotts Work,' writes Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. "We saw this in the early 1990s, when people last boycotted Arizona for the state's refusal to observe Martin Luther King, Jr. Day: people canceled their vacations to Scottsdale and the Grand Canyon; conventions were moved from Phoenix to Los Angeles, and the NFL moved SuperBowl XXVII from Tempe to Pasadena." He calls on readers to "march as one to show that we oppose the unpatriotic policies taking root in Arizona."
  • Boycott Success Depends on Organization  "It's unclear how effective (or practical) any of these boycotts might be," writes The Wall Street Journal's Conor Dougherty, although he says there's certainly potential for a "crippling" blow to the state.
Washington Post columnist Robert McCartney is considering boycotting the Arizona Diamondbacks when they come into town, but that is likely to be as detrimental to the Washington Nationals as it is to the Arizona team. Various cities including Oakland and Los Angeles have proposed city bans on Arizona vendors, which follow San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom’s push to ban all "non-essential" travel to California's sun-soaked neighbor. Meanwhile, the kerfuffle over the law and potential boycotts have prompted Arizona iced tea to note that the company is actually from New York.
  • The Counter Boycott 'BUYcott' Folks  Colorful TBogg of the liberal Firedoglake community looks at some of the right-wing calls to counter the boycott by trying to purchase Arizona goods. The problem, he says, is that their options are mostly limited to "a turboprop engine from Honeywell or a drill press." He also digs up some native-to-Arizona kachina dolls and foot fetish pornography. "But what if you hate brown people but you’re not into foot tomfoolery, heavy equipment or quaint indigenous tchochkes, what can you do to help?" The BUYcotters have suggested that "families intentionally vacation [in Arizona] this summer." Responds TBogg:

Yes, you should do that.

I mean, sure, going to a place where the average high temperature in July is 105 degrees may sound kind of stupid, but it’s a dry stupid.

  • How About You Boycott Iran?  "Focus," suggests Greg Gutfeld at Big Hollywood. "In Iran, homosexuality is punishable by death, and human rights groups estimate some 4,000 gays have been executed since the Islamic revolution in 1979." He's not super impressed with the boycott calls (nor is Jonah Goldberg and one of the National Review readers): "Pick real injustices--instead of the stylish ones--to rail against, and the response might not be stifled laughter."
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