Coffee, marriage equality, politics and religion: Why we should step up the Gloria Jeans boycott

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A few years ago many members of the Atheist community and the general population started boycotting Gloria Jeans due to their financial support of Mercy Ministries, who ran/run gay conversion programs….

I just read a post on currentaffairs.net.au in which the author has accessed the political donation details for the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) for the 2010/2011 financial year.

Political Expenditure – Donation Details – 2010-2011
Australian Christian Lobby
4 Campion Street
_____________________________ ___________
Donations where $11,500 or more was received for political expenditures:

Neil Golding
31/08/2010 – $100,000.00

Gloria Jeans Coffees International, 11 Hoyle Ave, CASTLE HILL NSW 2154
30/11/2010 – $30,000.00

Christian Super Pty Limited, P.O. Box 3035, RHODES NSW 2138
31/12/2010 – $13,636.00

The ACL, as most of you would be aware, were lobbying hard against the Sunrise / Marie Claire / Getup campaign for marriage equality. ido.org.au.

With the ACL lodging a complaint with the Australian Communications and Media Authority that Sunrise was breaching their codes by supporting the ido.org.au campaign, in that they were not presenting news impartially, and also calling for the public to send messages to Sunrise’s sponsors condemning their support of a program supporting marriage equality. Fortunately, that backfired, with many more people contacting the sponsors to congratulate them for supporting Sunrise and Marie Claire and marriage equality :)

So, if you want another reason to boycott Gloria Jeans, then add to them sponsoring a lobby group that claims to represent the Christians of Australia, that lobbies against marriage equality.

Show the world that the hateful messages of the ACL are not acceptable in our society may not be heard over the frantic shrieking of the ACL, but the reasonable rest of the community can keep sending messages in the way that gets noticed. Financially.

You’re a fair person, right?

Do what feels fair.




  1. Holy crap, I had no idea. Glad I never got coffee there in the first place…

  2. Fiona

    I found a story earlier that said about how Starbucks in the US was actively pro marriage equality and was facing a backlash over THAT. Will find the link again.

  3. Hi Fiona, this is a timely post as I mentioned both GJ’s and the ACL in a recent blog post myself! Hope you don’t mind that I have linked this post now from my little blog :)

    It surprises me how many people still don’t know about GJ’s and the Hillsong connection but the more the better as far as I’m concerned!

    Well written and thanks for highlighting it.

  4. Fiona

    Thanks! I just HAD to write something on this, getting it out to the food and mum bloggers of Australia

  5. I’m really new to it. Not even sure if I should but it’s a topic I’m interested in (for obvious reasons). Just noticed we both have the stopavn pic & link!

  6. Thankfully, a cup of their cofee has never touched my lips. Thanks for letting me know. Now I am informed, I’ll be spreading the word.

  7. Wolfie Rankin

    I didn’t even know Gloria Jeans was a thing, however I have linked to this story via Facebook and G+ because I want equality to be a bigger thing than Gloria’s Christian Coffee Shop.

  8. Harvey Milk in the 1970’s San Francisco ran successful boycotts of anti gay businesses.

  9. I’ve also been blogging a lot about ACL, Gloria Jeans, and the whole Jim Wallace catastrophe. Seems that he’s gone a few steps too far this time.

  10. 2 men or 2 women can never reproduce so why get married? I wonder how much money has been spent on the homo lobby, euthanasia, abortion. But hey, let’s all go out & hug a tree & all will be well. Not

  11. Fiona

    In a way, that’s a good thing, because that exposes him and the ACL for what it is, and the public needs to see it, so that the politicians realise it. *sigh*

  12. Fiona

    Thanks for you uninciteful comments, Ms P.

    We won’t bring into this infertile couples yet, hey?

  13. Pingback: Cute and Kitch Coffee @ Frankies Place, Darby Street | the little lioness

  14. I can’t stand Gloria Jeans – especially with their association to Hillsong. I have no issue with religion or religious organisations but I do take issue with religious organisations that abuse their position for profit. Hillsong was given money for a program with Indigenous communities a few years back and the government ended up taking it back because something like 90% of the $800k grant was being absorbed by ‘admin’ fees. Absolutely outrageous.

    On the issue of gay marriage and marriage equality I have no problem with religious institutions that do not want to perform them if their liturgy directly states that marriage is between a woman and a man. I do have a problem when these groups use religion to influence marriage equality in a civil context. Religion should have no bearing on legislation relating to civil marriage equality, which is what this debate is largely based upon. The two are different and both sides of the fence forget that – the fact that they are reporting Marie Claire for their campaign goes to show just how little they value the separation of Church and State.

  15. Fiona


    The idea of a separation between church and state was actually pushed for by Catholics (a minority in the US at the time) because they feared oppression by the more established churches.

    Leslie Cannold has given some fabulous talked on the separation of church and state in the US vs Australia, and how it exists in the states, but technically doesn’t here because of the courts’ interpretations of the constitution.

    Here is the link to her talk at the Global Atheist Convention this year: http://cannold.com/articles/article/separating-church-state-a-call-to-action/ “Separating Church & State A call to action”

  16. It’s just a shame that US politicians and the electorate struggle with the concept of separation of Church and State. While it isn’t inherent to our system here we as an electorate tend to expect it whereas many Americans see them as one and the same. It’s so interesting!

    I am not atheist (Jewish…so the chances of our religion being a factor in legislation are slim anyway, haha!) but I think that atheism, or rather a lack of influence from religion (particularly fundamental sects of religion) when it comes to legislation is so important. I am not particularly big on political correctness in a cultural sense (I don’t see any need to ban Christmas decorations in Inner West streets etc) but I do not agree with people thinking their personal religious views should prevent people from having equal rights. I’ll have a look at that talk – it sounds interesting!

  17. Fiona

    I had a look for a video of the talk which would make more sense than the slides.

    Leslie comes from a Jewish background herself. He has the coolest Jewish New York blended with Australian accent.

    And I love my Xmas tree. It just happens to feature a few different decorations to some. Like giant microbes and a flying spaghetti monster with a santa hat.

  18. Not sure what your point is. Actually it’s Mrs P……& I don’t recall giving you permission to publish my surname. But that’s ok, I have nothing to fear or be ashamed of :)

  19. Fiona

    I knew I’d get the reply of “Actually it’s Mrs…” :)

    Would you like to retract your statement? Or are you happy to stand by it?

    I like this as a guideline to dealing with comments on blogs: http://frogpondsrock.com/about-me/comment-policy/ *hattip to Kim*

    I should, in theory, delete it, because as the owner of the blog, allowing a homophobic comment to remain posted here could get me in trouble, as technically I’d be responsible as the editor of this site for letting it be published.

    But you know, carry on. And let me know if you’re not happy to stand by your earlier comments.

  20. Fiona

    Oh and my point was

    Is reproduction the only reason to get married?

    Or have sex for that matter?

  21. Fiona

    Oh and in response to why spend all this money on getting marriage equality…. well because we’re all people and we all should have the same recognition and choices in our lives. And the reason so much money is needed to be spent pushing for equality is because some people seem to keep pushing back *shrugs*

    Wouldn’t it be better to get it over with? Like removing a Band-aid?

    Oh, that’s not so bad afterall!

  22. Fiona

    Ahhh here we go http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/25/robert-spitzer-ex-gay-psychiatrist-apology_n_1453570.html

    Earlier this month, psychiatrist Bob Spitzer made headlines after he retracted his controversial 2001 study proclaiming that “highly motivated” gay and lesbian people could change their sexual orientation. But Spitzer is now going even further by making what has been described as “an unprecedented apology” to both former patients of reparative therapy as well as members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community at large.

  23. Fiona

    Hehe it’s a plugin called “Comment Luv” the tick box is under the posting box.

  24. Fiona

    Great start!

    Some people in my circles were asking why I was bothering to tell people about the Hillsong/GJs link, when they felt everyone already knew. Clearly not!

  25. Wolfie Rankin

    I do have something against religion. Fair enough if it was the dark ages, but it’s 2012… all this stuff should be OVER with.

    When someone is talking to me and they say something like “I’m a Christian” I was bought up to think that was meant to show how “good” the person was, but now I just think that it means “I’m an idiot”.

    I’m also fed up with Religious junkmail, from Christians and Scientologists (and lets face it, they’re both cults).

    I will not give the religious one moment of my time, or one cent of my money.

    To me it’s just a mindspace where people can look down their nose and think “I’m better than you”.


  26. Hi Fiona,

    While I know you don’t agree with Esther’s comments, I don’t see how they are homophobic. Homophobia is the fear of homosexuals. I think she just disagrees with same sex marriage.

    That said, I don’t think her response was very loving or kind.

  27. Fiona

    Hi Nat

    I guess it was the use of the term “the homo lobby” that got my alarm bells ringing.

  28. Fiona

    Hey, I was at the Global Atheist Convention, don’t need to preach to me about how much religion is past its time, and generally getting in the way of common sense, fairness and science.

    It has no place in healthcare, and should only be studied at school in a facinaion context, as a way of studying past beliefs, like we do with the Pyramids and Minerva.

  29. I understand.
    I assumed she might be of an older generation or just didn’t understand that ‘homo’ is more than an abbreviation and has derogatory connotations.

    Maybe it’s the grammar nazi in me but I get frustrated with the misuse of ‘homophobic’. Most of the time it’s just a disagreement of opinion, not an actual fear.

  30. Just… wow. Where have I been and why am I only hearing about this now!!

    Anyways. To the person slamming homosexuality bcoz of the inability to naturally procreate with someone of the same gender, I have some questions.

    Women and men who are born infertile… when do u plan on making their marriages illegal? If they can’t breed I guess they can’t marry.

    And what about women who have gone through menopause? They can no longer procreate so I guess it’s needless for them to stick around. Put em all into a commune to live out the rest of their barren days, right?

    How about people who simply don’t want to have kids? Who want to travel? Have careers and live their lives not raise someone else’s? I guess they better write a clause in the marriage constitution about intentions to breed, just to make sure they don’t slip through and not have a kid.

    And I guess it’s just out of the question for anyone to have sex for any other means than to reproduce. Seeing as it’s the genitals you’re focussing on, and they’re ‘being made to make life and nothing else’.

    Yes. Keep telling me you don’t have sex recreationally. I’m believing every word that dribbles out of your mouth.

  31. Firstly – Homophobia is a range of negative attitudes and feelings toward homosexuality or people who are identified or perceived as being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT). Definitions refer variably to antipathy, contempt, prejudice, aversion, and irrational fear. So as you see nat its not just about fear.

    Second – Marriage equality is the preferred term because its not about what genitals a person has its about – EQUALITY and nothing more.

    Third – Gloria Jeans have the right to hold whatever views they choose and donate to whoever they choose however if the groups they donate to are fiercely anti gay such as the ACL then don’t be surprised when an entire section of the community feel insulted and choose to voice their objections. Freedom of speech works both ways.

    Fourth – GJ’s have created a PR disaster by attempting to snow over the entire issue by –
    1)Claiming they are not affiliated with any religious group even though the founders of GJ’s are hill song devotees and as you’ll see below they are involved with several anti gay religious groups.
    2) Claiming it was a one off payment (like who cares how many it was, the point is they made it)
    3) Claiming to embrace equality and diversity for all. (How does one embrace equality yet donate to hate groups? Go figure.)
    4)Deleting posts speaking out for equality from their Facebook page yet allowing extreme anti gay christian rants to remain.
    5)Posting random pictures unrelated to anything such as one of a hammock on a tropical island in an attempt to distract people which by the way failed.

    They also support several other so called christian groups all who have anti gay views see here –
    Gay people are fighting for equality under the law – nothing more. Right wing christians are fighting to stop this from happening. They are desperately using all sorts of lies and fear tactics because they are fighting a losing battle. Its very sad to see people using religion to justify their own prejudice. Marriage equality is coming, its inevitable. the world won’t stop turning. Equality is what we need on this planet for everyone.
    I am 45 year old gay man, I was born the way I am and Im happy with that. I am a good and loving person and try to live my life in a way that spreads positivity and love. At school I was violently bullied verbally and physically. I was also cruelly ostracised. I didn’t even know what my sexual orientation was back then but I guess others hated me for what they perceived as different. In my mid teens I was ready to kill myself but luckily I didn’t – instead I abused drugs. Its makes me feel so sad that kids are still going through the shit I went through. I survived a virtual hell , I got off drugs over 15 years ago and I have been with my loving partner for 12 years. Why the hell should we not be allowed to consummate our relationship legally?? there is no reason except – prejudice.

  32. I for one, married purely for procreation purposes, I consider it mandatory as part of the marital contract. And if I fail to provide a son, I expect to be stoned to death.

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