Sunday, October 17, 2010

Was rainbow light show a statement? Welllll....

If you were within eyeshot of Uptown this week, you might have noticed a twist to the nightly light show at the new Duke Energy Center: A rainbow theme, running atop and down the corners of the 48-story building.

That happened Monday, which also happened to be National Coming Out Day, a nationwide gay and lesbian celebration that included events in Charlotte.

Was it a coincidence? Or was it an uncommonly bold corporate statement – an enthusiastic arm around the shoulder of the gay community as it reels from a brutal attack in New York and teen suicides across the country?

We called Alexandra Ball, the smart and helpful spokeswoman at Wells Fargo Charlotte, which owns the building on South Tryon and operates the light show.

Was the rainbow intentional?

“Yes, it was,” said Alex.

There you go. Bold and enthusiastic. Has anyone complained?

“Um,” she said, sounding a little caught off guard. “No.”

Whose idea was it?

Rustling of papers. More rustling of papers.

“Is this something I can get back to you on?”

Uh-oh. Maybe “enthusiastic” isn’t necessarily the word here.

Let’s set this one up for you: A San Francisco-based bank has its Eastern headquarters in a Southern city. Someone in the bank decides it’s a good idea to light the Southern city’s evening sky with a 48-story stamp of approval for a gay and lesbian event.

Odds are, the person who made this call was a mid-level manager type, because bold statements like this have a tendency to start gasping and wheezing the farther they work their way up the corporate stairwell.

But we weren’t sure what happened. Two hours passed, and no phone call. Clearly, a thoughtful response was under construction.

This is precisely what Wells Fargo had hoped to avoid with its new toy. In an interview this summer about the impending light show launch, Wells Fargo exec Curt Radkin had said the displays would commemorate national holidays, sports successes and significant community events. They would, however, steer clear of religious holidays and controversial events.

Makes sense – you don’t want to loudly take sides on issues that divide your customers. But now that someone apparently had, Wells faced a choice: It could embrace its show of corporate heart. Or it could delicately back away, as in “We welcome one of our employees enthusiastic support for the event, but we are evaluating how these decisions are made company-wide…”

But sooner would be better, Alan Freitag told me, while I was waiting. Alan is an associate professor of public relations at UNC Charlotte. “Someone needs to just say, ‘Yeah, we did it. We thought it was the right thing to do. What’s the problem?’ And it’s over.”

Not only that, it shows us something – a willingness to stand by a conviction. We get those opportunities regularly in our lives, in big ways and small, corporately and personally. Sometimes, they come with a price.

And no, the test of owning up to a rainbow light display isn’t exactly on the level of the cock crowing twice. But it’s a statement to this city, and to a community in this city, at a time when such statements are important.

Which is exactly what Wells Fargo decided to do.

Alex called back four hours later, apologizing for the delay. The light show explanation: A Wells Fargo workplace group here was participating in a local National Coming Out Day event, and someone from the group asked if the light display could be lit to commemorate the day and event. The company made a decision to support that.

“Wells Fargo supports many community events in Charlotte,” Alex said.

Bold? Maybe not. But enthusiastic enough.

And this week, its community is a little better because of it.

81 comments:

Anonymous said...

It was a fantastic display. Thank you to Wells Fargo for taking the initiative.

RS said...

This battle of the Culture War is obviously being lost right now.

The re-defining has progressed. The sting of sin is wearing off in the public eye and we are allowing it to happen.

The shame is gone, the remorse is gone.

Anonymous said...

I did not see it, but I've heard it was fabulous.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Wells for helping our gay community feel welcomed!!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Wells Fargo for showing your support for the diverse community we all live in and for the diverse clientele of the bank!

WashuOtaku said...

I am sure that nobody even realized it, I certainly didn't. Only know about it now because you posted it and Observer posted it on main page.

Honestly though, do I care... not really.

wiley said...

This is precisely what Wells Fargo had hoped to avoid with its new toy. In an interview this summer about the impending light show launch, Wells Fargo exec Curt Radkin had said the displays would commemorate national holidays, sports successes and significant community events. They would, however, steer clear of religious holidays and controversial events.

I guess we can rule out a tribute to Mother Teresa.

I suppose the rainbow was considered a "non-controversial event".

RevMCC said...

Amazing sight following the candlelight vigil for youth who have committed suicide after being bullied for sexual orientation issues. One of the most wonderful sights I have seen since a 50 foot red ribbon on a church in West Hollywood back in the 80's.

Anonymous said...

It was a really surprising and heart-warming sight to see this kind of thing in relatively conservative Charlotte. It looked striking and it sent a powerful message.

Those of you who were offended by a rainbow, who can't bear any acknowledgement of a significant portion of the world's population, you'll be left behind somewhere in the last century, bickering over nothing as the rest of us move forward.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Wells Fargo!

Anonymous said...

This was wonderful. Thank you, Wells Fargo.

Larry said...

I wonder what it will look like all darkened? Perhaps all the customers who want that should request that for a week. Say October 24th for the whole week.

Oh and strangely we will make it our against Abortion week here in Charlotte. Maybe the Mint will have a big ole party up there for us all night long?

www.Ettolrahc.com If it is good for all then it is good for one.

Anonymous said...

A strong show of support in a town that desperately needs GLBT visibility, a great statement.

Anonymous said...

Thank you to Duke, a great corporate leader in this town! If only our city leaders and agencies could be as embracing of all people in the community!

Anonymous said...

I plan to go Monday morning and close all my old First Union-Wachovia-Wells Fargo accounts. They have every right to do as they please with their property, and I have every right to pull every cent and close my credit cards with them. I do business with companies that support family values.

Matt said...

Will there ever be a day when the gay community can live their lives with out screaming we are gay in everything they do. They are the immoral minority that is trying to jam their lifestyle down the majoritys throat. Consider my B of A account closed.

Anonymous said...

I didn't know Monday was National Coming Out Day.

Even if I had known, I wouldn't have cared one way or another, just as I wouldn't care if there was some sort of National Heterosexual Day (which of course, there never will be).

If you're GLBT, fine. So what? You're no more special than anyone else.

Anonymous said...

RS & Wiley - Very sad but true statements. And now Pravda put's it on page one.

JAT said...

I have figured out other date/light combos -- at least to start.

Steve said...

@Matt -- you're closing your BofA account because of a light display on the Duke building built by Wells Fargo??!! That makes a lot of sense.

pstonge said...

Good morning, all.

As always, we welcome your thoughts, pro and con. But please avoid abusive comments or namecalling.

Anon, 7:59: The Duke Energy Center is owned by Wells Fargo, which operates the light show.

Thanks...

Peter

Anonymous said...

Good to see all of the folks logging in to the Observer to spread their hate errr--- "family values", before heading off to church this morning!

komodoman said...

To those who want to close their accounts because companies support "anti-family values". You may want to consider that Visa, Mastercard, AmEx and Discover all support gay/lesbian organizations.

The computers you are using to spew your hatred are all manufactured by HP, Dell, Lenova, Apple, etc...all companies who support progressive organizations.

So, turn off our computers, only use cash and cut off your electricity. That way you'll remain true to narrow, hate-filled beliefs.

Anonymous said...

It is very sad that Corporate agrees with Sin! Although will refrain from participating in religious holidays. I don't hate the sinner, but dislike the sin. This is exactly what is worng with America today. We accept what corporate America does aganist what America was born on. Although Duke Energy does not have control over the lights, it SHOULD stand up and at least make a statement stating that they do not agree or disagree with this.

FlyGracefully said...

Unlike religion, sexual preference has a biological basis. Gay people deserve to be treated the same as everyone else. Until that happens, I applaud Wells Fargo for this and I hope they actually put their money where their mouth is with benefits for same sex partners and such because it's more than a day and it's more than a light show.

Anonymous said...

This makes me PROUD that I have accounts with Wells Fargo. Thank you for doing the right thing and showing that you can appreciate all people.

What a great thing!

Anonymous said...

I wonder if W-F will choose to be bold and progressive by using the words "Merry Christmas" in December. There are many in the community that would support such an action.

Anonymous said...

" Anonymous said...
Good to see all of the folks logging in to the Observer to spread their hate errr--- "family values", before heading off to church this morning!"
_ Actually the majority 0f comments were supportive. I didn't see ANY hateeful comments AT ALL. There were several comments that DISAGREED with the actions of Wells Fargo and/or the agenda of the bank. Wells Fargo had previously assured the community and it's customers that they would avoid using the light show to support divisive agendas, controversy, & political divisiveness. They did not honor their commitment to the community or their customers. People have a reasonable right to disagree with using the light show as a political agitator and that is not hate by any means. They also have a reasonable right to disagree with the specific issue on moral grounds. Disagreement does not equal hate. There is not one comment that is hateful toward LGBT people

Anonymous said...

When straight people are hated 24/7 for who they love and worse, discriminated by law then I will support Straight Pride.

Anonymous said...

"sexual preference has a biological basis. "
-That is an opinion as it applies to homosexuality. even the research that claims to have "found a gene" has not found it in all individuals in their test populations. And the "gene" seems to almost non existent in the female population.
But yes sexual preference does have a biological basis and it is obviously to ensure the survival of the species. Common sense would indicate people are attracted to people of the opposite sex as it results in the propogation of one's genes and the species

Anonymous said...

komodoman wrote:
"The computers you are using to spew your hatred are all manufactured by HP, Dell, Lenova, Apple, etc...all companies who support progressive organizations.
So, turn off our computers, only use cash and cut off your electricity. That way you'll remain true to narrow, hate-filled beliefs."

-I have read every comment on the board and have not seen one hate-filled comment on this board at all. Please point one out. Good luck with that...

Anonymous said...

When straight people are hated 24/7for who they love and worse, discriminated by law then I will support Straight Pride.

- I don't think anyone is trying to create a straight pride day... The most likely reason is that most people don't feel the need to frame their ability or intention to reproduce as their "identity" or promote it as political agenda.
As far a s the law discriminating, it has in the past and has generally irradicated discrimination today. While there are some controversial issues, one can argue for or against whether familial rights issues are "discriminatory" (a negative context) or just different.

wiley said...

I accept homosexuality.

It's the obvious, pathetic, overused political correctness in the name of "diversity" by corporations I can't stomach.

Anonymous said...

More thoughts for those closing out their bank accounts because of this. You may as well quit flying, never see an entertainment production, give up fine restaurants, quit staying in hotels, and never ever get sick enough to require hospitalization as the healthcare industry (along with these other service industries) is well represented by the LGBT community.

Anonymous said...

Yeah Matt better not fly anymore because most airlines are very progressively gay. So he better fly his family on his own G4.

Anonymous said...

I guess those opposed to us are afraid the evil rainbow lights would turn them gay! Since it's so easy to pick and choose archaic biblical refs and attack gays.

I wish I could be as " moral " and " Christian " as all of you. If the reverse had occurred I have hard time believing any of you would support us having equal time.

Anonymous said...

That light show was so gay.

Anonymous said...

Good for Wells Fargo... I am a straight man who has no interest in the gay lifestyle and hopes none of my kids end up being gay, HOWEVER I fully support you right choose to live how you please.

I am so sick of the christian right being so hypocritical of the gay community... these are the same people who go to church each week to pray to and praise a homeless man, while the rest of the week ignore the homeless community! (just one example of their hypocritical ways)

Rick B. said...

I thank Wells Fargo and am happy to keep my account with them. For me the issue is not whether you are for or against homosexuality. It's about how damaging fear and secrecy are to a culture and society. When a group, any group feels like they must hide and cannot express their needs and values, it inevitably ends expressing itself in negative behaviors. Examples from this particular group include: Gay teens killing themselves, gay men marrying women because they think it's the only way to hide what they are dealing with, pastors and priests abusing boys or manipulating vulnerable parishioners because it's the only outlet for what's going on inside their head and body.

Ending the need for secrecy caused by demonizing homosexuality is a win win for all sides. Young people would feel comfortable talking with parents, pastors and friends. There would be no need to take your life, because other acceptable options would be visible to you. Husbands considering infidelity with another man could get help from pastors counselors or even their wife. Pastors struggling with a sexuality that is in conflict with their beliefs would be free to seek advice and help without fear of loosing their jobs or the good they do for the world.

The need for secrecy due to fear of exposure do no one any good. If your too scared to speak... You can't ask for help from either side of the issue.

Anonymous said...

The lights were just the sort of thing we need more of in Charlotte. It was the right thing to do, and it took moxie.

Thank you, Wells Fargo.

Anonymous said...

"The sting of sin is wearing off in the public eye and we are allowing it to happen."
********
What annoys me to no end is that people view homosexuality as a sin "because the bible says it is."

And why do we follow the bible? Because *the bible says it is* the word of God. There is *nothing* outside of the bible itself that says the bible is the word of God.

You'd think that God might clear this up himself, since there is so much religious disputing in the world. All religious books *claim* to be the one true word of God.

If you know anything about religious history, you'd see that Christianity is not a very original religion.

Open your eyes, and realize you are using an ancient fairy tale to tell right from wrong. Science and Reason must win in the end.

Anonymous said...

They lit it up like that because they felt like it. Period. They didn't get back to you for 4 hours because they have more important things to do than to track down a who, what, where, when and why for a commentary reporter.

Anonymous said...

San Francisco values coming full-force to Charlotte- Gee, couldn;t you at least let us have N. Pelosi as our rep, too? We have SOOO much to learn.

Anonymous said...

Sure would be nice if they could do what they originally said instead of being politically correct in a San Francisco kind of way. And, it would be nice if tolerance still meant what it used to mean instead of being either forced to accept another's beliefs or be labeled a bigot or homophobe.

Anonymous said...

Yawn!! double Yawn!!! wait... what lights? Very few people in this want -a-be big city that saw that...

Kevin C. said...

Personally I was glad to see the lights. I was pleased to see that Wells Fargo appreciate the diversity in their community and if you feel so strongly that you must pull your money from the, by all means, put your money were your mouth is and do so. Those who like what they did let them know and continue to use them.

I think it is sad that the two sides can not communicate and instead just revert to angry jibes, anonymous back biting and short terse sentences. It cheapens your stance in my eyes if you can't even stand up, post your name, or speak with full and well developed thoughts to get your point across.

I hope that one day, different is not seen as wrong.
I applaud WF for standing up what they believe in and showing their true colors.

Anonymous said...

And we should be proud of accepting a "lifestyle" choice of 1% of the US population that not only is socially destructive, biologically unnatural, medical destructive (1 in 5 gay men are HIV positive, anal warts, colon cancer) why? Because someone thinks that one mans desire to perform an act condemned by nature itself is ok, I think not.

wiley said...

Science and Reason must win in the end.

Homosexuality cannot exist without heterosexual sex. Two men nor two women can procreate.

Only since the 1950's with artificial insemination and 1978 with invitro fertilisation have other options been available for homosexuals who cannot biologically have children.

Larry said...

I challenged the biological aspect and was moderated.

So Gay sex is the only biological sexual variation acceptable from St. Orge and the Charlotte Observer.

Seems to me that is very nice of them and helpful to the agenda.

pstonge said...

Hi Larry,

As you can see from other comments, discussion about biology is fine here, no matter your opinion. Your comment was deleted because it was abusive.

Peter

Anonymous said...

I must say, it’s so sad to read all of the negative comments regarding the Wells Fargo sponsorship of National Coming Out Day. What does it matter to you? I am a straight, married woman but I believe in the rights of my GLBT fellow citizens and friends. I’d ask those of you who are religious to remind yourself that it is GOD who is supposed to be the only one to pass judgments on people and furthermore, what would Jesus do? I just thought that we had moved past this sort of discrimination in our society but it seems it is just not so. I’d ask all of you who care so much to express your bigotry to ask yourself if it were your mother, daughter, son, grandson, nephew, best friend, neighbor – who said they were gay (LBT)… would you hate this much or could you, out of the kindness of your human heart say, well… maybe we all do not have to choose the same lifestyle but it seems like they are happy and for that, we should all be happy for them. Wells Fargo has made a statement that the rest of the world needs to… we should all be accepting of one another… it is time. It is time to set aside our differences and appreciate one another for who we are as individuals, not for who others assume us to be in relationship to our life choices…

Anonymous said...

Thanks Wells Fargo!!! Being 60 years old and having four daughters and two grandsons, I can tell you that I’m happy to see a large corporation take part in such an important issue. I will just say that as much as I love my daughters and my grandsons, if they were to tell me that they were gay, my love for them would not change. Well done Wells Fargo, I will definitely keep my accounts with your bank not because you have addressed the issue but because you had the guts to do it!!!

Anonymous said...

What would Jesus do? He would welcome gay people into his flock, but I'm sure he wouldn't show rainbow lights on the Wells Fargo building. I have plenty of gay friends, and approve of them having the same rights as straight people. I don't approve of them having special rights others don't have.

Anonymous said...

As a result of your article in today's paper, my husband and I will now cancel our subscription to the Charlotte Observer and will transfer our banking business from Wells Fargo. We disagree with Wells' decision to celebrate National Coming Out Day with their rainbow light show and your support of it. Our decision is sacrificial, since we both enjoy reading the paper each day--and since we have banked with Wachovia, then Wells, for almost 27years (over 40 for me personally); however, we feel taking this stand is important and necessary for us to do. We realize this will not disturb you or the Observer or Wells. Sad, but that's okay.

Anonymous said...

Special rights, what special rights do we have? Are you talking about the "right" to light up a building? Really? Charlotte has long talked about being a "world class city". The number of skyscrapers and sports teams does not make a city world class. Having a corporate entity that has the guts to allow a statement of love and inclusion is a big step in the right direction!

wiley said...

People might do well to remember that "diversity" also includes those who totally disagree with your position, no matter what the origin.

Failure to understand that makes one's own opinion worthless.

Lynne Stevenson said...

Some of my best friends are gay and I love them just as much as my heterosexual friends. We are all children of God and that is all that matters. He loves everybody the same, too bad a lot of people don't follow His lead...

Anonymous said...

To the posters who are cancelling their subscriptions and Wells Fargo accounts, I guess you'll not be shopping anywhere but Walmart these days and staying in your home. The world is changing and the majoritiy of larger companies are marketing towards the LGBT community. So while you are cancelling your accounts of Wells Fargo, make sure you don't fly any major airline, bank at a major bank, frequent a department store, shop at Food Lion, Best Buy, Target, etc. All of these companies openly support the LGBT communities. Good Luck in your quest to avoid the LGBT community and businesses that support it.

Louise said...

I participated in the "It Gets Better" vigil at Holy Trinity Lutheran Chruch on Monday night and it brought tears to my eyes when I saw the rainbow lights on the Duke Energy building as I was driving home. Well done, Wells Fargo!! Thank you for having the courage to support a group of people who have long been harrassed, bullied, and outcast by narrow-minded righteous christians.

pstonge said...

Thanks to Wiley (8:05), for making a great point, and thanks for the thoughtful comments on different sides of this issue.

Peter

Cristina Cassidy said...

Excellent article, Peter. Good reporting. I love the tongue-in-cheek tone of the piece. And yes, the community is better for what Wells Fargo did.

Anonymous said...

I wish I had seen the display. Whether you agree with homosexuality or not, a sixty story building lit up like a rainbow is pretty cool.

I was going to swith to BOA to support a NC bank once Wells switched logos in Charlotte, but I think I'll keep my Wells account now. I'm glad to see the bank is making such good use of its building.

Anonymous said...

This is America, a melting pot of cultures, beliefs, traditions and opposing points of view. So I applaud Wells Fargo for having the courage to show their support for one segment of our community, for honoring their day and for not being politically correct for once. It's refreshing to see and I hope that we see more of it.

I do hope, and somewhat expect, that Christmas and 4th of July will have their colors shown too...

Anonymous said...

Wells Fargo allowed a statetent to be made concerning an issue of community concern. To all those who suggest that showing support for LGBT is an attack on family values I would like to explain that I was always taught that my family will love me regardless of what I do, regardless of the opinions I hold simply because I am theirs. This was rooted in our Christian beliefs that regardless of who you are, regardless of WHICH sins afflict you my GOD loves and desire all. Our responsibility as Christians is to share this love and mercy granted.

Also, for the individual who wrote, "sexual preference does have a biological basis... it is obviously to ensure the survival of the species. Common sense would indicate people are attracted to people of the opposite sex as it results in the propogation of one's genes and the species." I would like to remind you that if this were accurate, I - nor my heterosexual husband of 20 years, would not be attracted to each other as we are both infertile and have, nor have ever had, the biological ability to propogate the species. It is a false analogy.

Thank you Wells Fargo for being bold enough to support such an important community issue and affirming my Christian values of acceptance and unconditional love.

-Loved by Christ, boldly Christian and full of love for all as THAT is what I am called to do as a Christian!

Anonymous said...

I really do not care if Wells wants to come out of the closet or not. I just wish they would stop sending me paper statements when I asked for online only AND charging me a fee for printouts of checks that I also did not request. I'd also rather have kept my credit card and checking account in one place instead of them moving my credit card to Well and trying to charge me a late fee when it took them over a week to transfer the funds from my checking account to my credit card. Also not that they care but they seem to be the only company on the planet that is not set up for payments at a future date.

All of that means far more to me in terms of keeping my accounts with them than whether they turn the lights pink for Komen, rainbow for coming out day, blue in the rare event that the Panthers score or orange if the Bobcats ever win a game.

Anonymous said...

It's so funny that pink for the Komen race, mint green for the Mint opening, and Panthers blue on home games aren't "controversial" but this is?.. Thank you Wells and Duke. Hopefully some young person who is being bullied or is contemplating suicide saw this and it gave them hope. Thumbs up!

Anonymous said...

Why would you cancel your subscription to the paper over this? That's just...odd.

Did anyone see RED the other day? Now that was freaky in a "the eye is always watching" kind of way.

BTW Duke has domestic partner benefits so while you're making your boycott list, better pick up some candles to write by.

Anonymous said...

Read the bible. If a man lies with another man, it is an abomination.


All gays are on the fast track to hell.

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:03

The Bible says a lot of things. I don't suppose you're in favor of killing disobedient children with stones like it says to do in Deuteronomy 21:18-21?

Anonymous said...

It was just fabulous of Wells Fargo to highlight the sexuality of a small faction of the Greater Charlotte Community. Not all good citizens have to have the same sexual appetities, desires, & fetishes as our Hetrosexual brothers and sisters. Kudos to the new bank in town to honor us for being different in a time of Hope and Change. I hope all minorities can have their ray of light and hope to get the attention we need. Why can't this be a permanent display, rather than a one time extravaganza? Rainbow Power for all!!

Rob S. said...

I appreciate the Observer for covering the gay community as I feel it has often been overlooked. To me, the light show was a brave thing for Wells Fargo to do and I am glad to give them my business. I don’t consider the display a political statement or a threat to anyone. It appears that it was a show of support for an event that is based on the premise that everyone is equal and deserves to live life free from torment. This means gay and non-gay.

Sure, the gay community is often very critical of the religious community for their judgment based on their interpretation of religious scripture, stereotypes, and images from the media. I don’t blame them. How would you feel if someone showed up at your event screaming offensive things at you over loud speakers and directly in your face? [Think Westboro Baptist protesting at funerals] For the most part, those are the extremist who have been allowed to represent religious beliefs to the gay community.

The reality about gay people is different. We are your neighbors, friends, relatives, and fellow Americans. We all have morals and values that extend beyond sexuality. I can almost guarantee that you know people that are gay but won’t tell you because of fear. Fear of judgment, rejection, and isolation from those they love. I only wish they would come out so that you can put a face to the community.


My hope is that a discussion begins where gays and non-gays can sit down and really have a dialog. Not about the differences we have but about the similarities and things we have in common.

Anonymous said...

I care about the Bible about as much as I care about gays.

Which is to say not much.

Neither have anything to do with my life so as long as they aren't paraded around in front of me like something special, I don't care.

Sarah P said...

I thought the building was beautiful, and I drove out of my way to take photos.

Mel Stoner said...

"Although Duke Energy does not have control over the lights, it SHOULD stand up and at least make a statement stating that they do not agree or disagree with this."

Uh, I think that already did when they quietly began offering benefits to "domestic partners" several years ago.

DAP said...

Interesting that Mr. St. Onge asked only if there had complaints, not if there had been any comments in support (at least in the column). It is telling that a quiet, yet public demonstration of support would be questioned in a one-sided manner.

The subsequent "debate" here is far from that as well, as it easy for anonymous posters to drop their hate-filled views (from both sides) and disappear. Why have healthy debate and dialog to find out what we agree about instead of always focusing on our differences?

pstonge said...

DAP,

You make an excellent point. I think that sometimes, journalists instinctively seek out conflict - and that's not always the whole story. I hope that my column included that whole story - that what you call a "quiet, yet public" demonstration was the right thing - and a good thing for Charlotte.

Peter

Anonymous said...

"I plan to go Monday morning and close all my old First Union-Wachovia-Wells Fargo accounts. They have every right to do as they please with their property, and I have every right to pull every cent and close my credit cards with them. I do business with companies that support family values."

What about the values of the families that include gays & lesbians? Don't you think we have families, too?

"Family values" is code for bigotry, hatred, discrimination. Please, take your money somewhere else. Who needs it?

Anonymous said...

I am a Wells employee that extremely disagrees with why this was done. I am offended by it and it makes me sick that homosexuals seems to be so intrusive in our community. I don't care what you believe or practice but with that said, I don't want your beliefs and practices shoved down my throat either. It would be the same if I asked Wells to do something for heterosexual day. You are not more SPECIAL than I just because you have made a choice to be gay or lesbian. If gays and lesbians were meant to be together, then it would benefit the human race in some way; It is because of a selfish desire and CHOICE being made - Any claims that this is biological is a joke. That is just an excuse for justifying a disgusting, disease spreading and awful practice. Does that mean I hate Gays and Lesbians? NO! but it is my choice for myself and my children to not want to be subjected to this lifestyle.
On the other hand, I do think that everyone,regardless of sexual orientation, should be treated equally.
I did see the rainbow and it was beautiful but it had a different meaning for me. Not before I saw this editorial did I think it had anything to do with this topic. I just thought it was a way of showing off the capabilities. Shame on you, Wells Fargo, for getting involved with such a controversial event. I fully expect to see a light show for Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving and any other holiday celebrated by most of society.

Anonymous said...

So above poster when did you choose to be straight? Calling me diseased and you don't hate us? Whatever. WF is one of the most gay friendly companies around. You should quit if you are so "moral" and "self righteous".

We are part of Charlotte too, Our families are entitled to the same respect as yours.

You ignorance is appalling and offensive. Tell your gay coworkers that they are diseased and see how that goes over. Coward. At least own your hate.

johnson said...

I am sure that nobody even realized it, I certainly didn't. Only know about it now because you posted it and Observer posted it on main page.
- industrial light fixtures

Anonymous said...

I only hope that one day, people will spend more time focused on being accepting and loving souls to themselves, their families, and to other people, and less time being so judgemental. I am a heterosexual Christian that was always taught that being a Christian meant that I should not hate and that I should not judge.

Only on our own personal judgement day will we learn who's right or who is wrong on the judgements made by humanity. If you are a Christian who believes that being gay is wrong, then take it up with God. Not your neighbors, not your community, not with strangers and not with corporate America for goodness sakes. Supporters to this cause are merely demonstrating acceptance and love for a diverse set of friends and strangers in their community.

If you are implying that lighting a building with rainbows symbolizes something "special" for a small portion of humans in this world, maybe stop for a moment and put yourself in any minority's shoes...

Any sociology class will teach you that a majority fears loss of control to a minority. White, heterosexual Christians (which I happen to be) may be afraid that the world around them is changing, that it is so different than it used to be. They may fear that minorities are beginning to experience some levels of equality.

For the record, all people don't celebrate Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter, etc. but it is certainly "shoved down the throats" of minority groups every year... (the city of New York lights a huge beautiful Christmas tree for us every year, they even cover it on TV for the world to see). So comments that use such comparisons could appear to be a double-standard.

I am respectful of the fact that as much as one individual may support the gay community, another individual will oppose this cause with equivalent conviction. What frustrates me is when people speak with such hate about any human being. Leveraging stereotypes and making general assumptions to defend a statement can often be a disservice and can take the conviction out of any point that is trying to be made.

All of this negativity and judgement is hurtful, disgusting and sad in my opinion, but I will not hate an individual or all Christians because they disagree with homosexuality... I certainly wouldn't banish them to hell for it! That wouldn't be very Christian of me, and really... We should leave those decision up to God.

I love and respect humanity, diversity and all of it's differences. I stand true to the Christian faith that God decides whether or not to accept me and the people I love into His Kingdom... and it will not be based on the judgement of others, but on His. And I do sleep better at night knowing that.

I do hope that the GLBT Community knows that there are a tremendous amount of supporters out there, including myself who accept and love you for who you are. I can only hope that in my lifetime I will have the opportunity to see humanity shifting our focus away from judgement on one another and towards helping humanity through acceptance and love through all of our differences.

I thought this was interesting. Looks like the Empire States Building honors a very diverse light display throughout the year as well. This does include a display of lavender and white lights on June 25, 26 and 27 in honor of Heritage of Pride, 2010 NYC Pride Week.

@JAT, you will be pleased to know that it isn't just the giant Uptown Lunchbox that celebrates diversity in America... The Empire States Building has already created a lighting schedule far more extensive and diverse than the one you created to show acceptance and love for all those living in New York City.

Check it out!
http://www.esbnyc.com/tourism/tourism_lightingschedule.cfm?CFID=39840504&CFTOKEN=42077434