The holiday shopping season is moments away and people who want to use their money to promote fairness and equality should be informed.
The Human Rights Campaign has a buyers' guide that grades retailers based on how supportive they are of gay and lesbian equality.
Surprisingly, Ambercrombie & Fitch scores an embarrassingly low 50%. And though the Religious Right has recently behaved as if Wal-Mart was changing its name to Queer Mart, WM actually only received a solid "D" (65%).
Stores and companies that do make the grade (between 80 and 100 percent) include Best Buy, Sears, KMart, Walgreens, Borders, Waldenbooks, Whole Foods Market, Costco, Staples, Home Depot, Save-A-Lot, Shaw's, Target, the Gap, Levi Straus, Nordstrom, Liz Claiborne, Macy's, Bloomingdale's, After Hours, On the Border, Chili's, Romano's Macaroni Grill, TGI Friday's, Boston Market, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Coca-Cola products, General Mills foods, Kraft, Clorox, Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Walt Disney, BET, CBS, Logo, MTV, Starbucks, the New York Times, USA Today, Comcast, Verizon, American Airlines, US Airways, Delta, Southwest Airlines, Chevron, BP, Shell, Ford, General Motors, Volkswagon, Toyota, Subaru, UPS, Aetna, Kaiser Permanente, American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Citibank, Fannie Mae, Merrill Lynch, Visa, Wachovia, Wells Fargo, Master Card, Discover, and more. In fact, there are about 138 companies that make the HRC's A/B Honor Roll. There is also a list of companies that are not yet as friendly to LBGT buyers.
There are billions of dollars in the LBGT community and even more money when you consider our friends and allies. This season, enjoy shopping and reward those companies that stand for fairness and inclusion. Let them know doing the right thing can actually be profitable.
For the HRC buyersguide, visit http://www.hrc.org/buyersguide/