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Anger at Zimmerman verdict is being channeled into a call to boycott Florida

5:11 PM, Jul 17, 2013   |    comments
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George Zimmerman leaves the courtroom at the end of the day during his trial in Seminole circuit court July 5, 2013 in Sanford, Florida. Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder for the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin. (Photo by Gary W. Green-Pool/Getty Images)
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  • TAMPA BAY, Fla. -- "Boycott Florida!"  

    That's the cry coming from several directions in the wake of the verdict that set George Zimmerman free after the killing of Trayvon Martin.

    "No orange juice from Florida, no Disney World. We're going to shut it down," thundered a Washington D.C. pastor Sunday.     

    Church leaders from California to Tennessee say the unpunished killing of Martin shows Florida is not safe for black youth.  The Facebook page for tourism promoter Visit Florida is pasted with comments like "Not after the guilty verdict!" A petition has even been created.

    And at a performance in Canada on Sunday, singer Stevie Wonder took Florida off his tour schedule.

    "Until the 'stand your ground' law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again," promised Wonder.

    Do these issue-based Boycotts work?

    Margie Manning of the Tampa Bay Business Journal says usually not. Manning cites research that shows companies targeted by boycotts often see an increase in sales.

    The campaign against Chick-Fil-A for its CEO's opposition to same-sex marriage created what the company called a record-setting day.

    When Florida teachers boycotted Florida orange juice in the 90's for the industry's sponsorship of Rush Limbaugh's radio show, sales went up an estimated 40 percent.

    "There's usually an opposite reaction from consumers who support the company or cause that's being boycotted. They call it a 'buycott,'" said Manning.

    Boycotts may not bankrupt, but they have an effect. Chick-Fil-A did stop supporting anti-gay marriage groups. Florida Citrus stopped advertising on Rush.  

    As for whole states? The NAACP has an ongoing boycott against South Carolina for flying the confederate flag on their capitol dome.

    And since 2001, the NCAA will not hold any of it's post-season basketball tournaments in South Carolina because of the flag.

    ABC Tampa

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