If you live in the south, you're no doubt familiar with Bojangles. The ubiquitous Charlotte, NC-based chicken and biscuit chain has 500 locations sprinkled across 11 states.
Until today, Bojangles had been a regular advertiser on the Rush Limbaugh Show, sponsoring traffic on WBT-Charlotte nearly every day during the controversial program. And for months, the company had declined to respond to Flush Rush pressure that they remove the ads.
Apparently that all changed when Rush Limbaugh used the N word on the air last week.
Charlotte is a very diverse city, with 35% African American residents among its population. Today Bojangles took an ethical stand on behalf of those minorities and other targets of Limbaugh's rhetoric and issued this statement:
Thank you for your comment about our advertisements on The Rush Limbaugh Show. Respect for people of all genders, origins and beliefs is a core principle at Bojangles', and we would never knowingly participate in anything that could be considered offensive. When we buy radio advertising, we often do not select specific programming and have no knowledge of when our commercials will run – which was the case with ads that have run on the program in question. A number of our loyal guests have told us they were offended by some of the content on the program in recent weeks. We have looked into that content, and as a result we have taken the steps necessary to ensure our ads do not run on this program indefinitely. We hope you’ll continue to enjoy our chicken and biscuits, and we look forward to seeing you at Bojangles' again soon.
The Bojangles' Team
Another southern staple is the grocery store chain Food Lion, also headquartered near Charlotte, with 1,100 stores across the Southeast. Food Lion ads recently ran on WBT-Charlotte during the Rush Limbaugh Show, and after contact by various StopRush volunteers the grocery giant replied today:
Thank you for contacting Food Lion. We are pleased to have the opportunity to respond.I have researched and been advised that this was out of our control and we have told WBT to never let it happen again. We appreciate you bringing this to our attention.Again, thank you for contacting Food Lion.
The south appears to be rising again, although not in the sense the bumper stickers intended it. What we're seeing is a wave of "We're mad as hell and we're not gonna take this any more," as outraged citizens who are unwilling to remain punching bags for an obscenely wealthy Limbaugh continue to pressure advertisers to end their association (willing or unwitting) with on-air bigotry. Hatred is getting a little less profitable each day.
If you're interested in joining this growing movement, read on after the break.
Decent folks who believe in tolerance and equality are no longer powerless against Limbaugh's efforts to spread intolerance on the radio. StopRush is making a major impact by convincing advertisers on this show to withdraw their ads--and with your help we can do even more. Just a few emails, tweets, or Facebook messages a week to Limbaugh's advertisers can go a long way toward making hatred less profitable. It is our collective voice that makes us strong.