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Monday, April 1, 2013

Google honors Cesar Chavez but not Easter on Easter- Why?

Well Easter 2013 has come and gone..

Its not something we overly celebrate but we have respect for those who do, which it seems makes us the exception rather than the rule, especially as far as corporations are concerned.

Take Google..

We really weren't aware of it but it was brought to our attention by someone in our inner circle that for Google's "doodle".. that is to say the little artistic picture that the search site often uses to acknowledge special days..  Easter was once again completely ignored.

Instead, was a doodle honoring labor leader Cesar Chavez, whom two years prior President Obama stated March 31st being a day to honor him.  Thus the excuse was given to ignore the real meaning and significance of yesterday for a billion or so people...

This is what the doodle looked like:
Now we at A&G are not interested in defending nor disparaging Chavez nor even Google..

We know why the decision was made this year and in previous years to completely ignore both any Christian or even secular references (easter eggs, bunny rabbits, etc..) to the holiday...

It comes down to two reasons:

1)  Google does not want to offend China.

They are currently the #2 search engine in China behind a search engine called Baidu, and remember, China's population is 1.321 Billion... That's a little more than a full billion people more than the total population of the US.

Now the People's Republic of China does not recognize Christianity as having much significance in their nation.  Even though there are probably 75-80 million Christian Chinese that only represents 5-6% of the populace at most..
Officially, the government census minimizes them even more so.. In 2000 they stated their national census counted only 4 million Chinese Catholics and 10 million Protestants.

So you see that to put anything pro-Christian on their website is a dangerous proposition for Google in their goal to maintain a foothold in China.

You think our reasoning is unfounded, perhaps??

Not only has Google for many years capitulated to China's demands that many websites be censored to Chinese users based on content leaders feltdeemed worthy of blockage of access, but have at various times assisted China with spying on the Gmail accounts of Chinese citizens.

The only reason Google ever took a stand of any kind against the Chinese government was their servers were hacked by China in 2010 and the symbolism offended Google greater than any fear of profit loss.

Also remember, Google is an international corporation.. they profit in many nations where Christian populations are minimal to non-existent in size.

So why would they want to go out of their way to offend groups easily offended in order to placate a group of people who pretty much tolerate everything?

And this kinda leads to point #2 why Christians are disrespected..

2)  Practicing Christians aren't really that important to Google's business model.

Really that statement can apply to a lot of companies, especially the ones who think they're clever-clever by smushing Christmas, Hanukkah, Ramadan, and Kwanza into the pathetic umbrella of 'Happy Holidays'..
~ Notice the safe symbols Google uses to acknowledge Christmas-- a snowflake, Santa, a bell, a snowman, a candle and a gift box..

Its the ultimate disrespect to anyone who has any core faith or religious conviction in any belief system.  Its saying.. "Eh.. whatever it takes to get your $$ without offending others since we want their $$ equally so.."

The business mindset is: Christians can have their 'Santa', Rudolph and Frosty and everything in red/green motif..  For the Jews, we'll have those spinning top toys, um..um.. dridels displayed everywhere.. harmless enough.. OK, they're appeased..

Muslims?  not sure what to do about them but as long as we don't display crosses or Stars of David anywhere, they should stay calm, and those Kwanza celebrators? Well, technically their 'faith' doesn't start till after Christmas so we'll worry about them then...'
Let's be very cut and dry about it...  look through an advertiser's eyes...

Who's more likely to try new things... to leach on to new looks and fads?  To need the latest toys, gadgets and gizmos to show off to their friends, neighbors and co-workers...  To need to shop to fill the inner void...

Is it the person of faith who is content with their belief system and place in this world and who embraces a certain level of orthodoxy of custom and tradition in their religion; a person who has a scheduled yet happy life full of work, family time and church or synagogue or mosque

OR

Someone more secular and open in their belief system; someone more accepting of different points of view and lifestyles as they will ultimately be more accepting of different products and services sold in different wrappers and slogans;  someone needing to show the world they are special and different and unique.. a never-ending quest through consumption...

Both kinds of people are good.. there are no 'baddies' here..
~ Everyone's opening presents & have no reasoning as to why.. Yay!

But Madison Avenue finds the second option much more desirable than the first... Dramatically so.  And thus businesses like Google and even entertainment will craft and cater content to appease and please the secularist because that's where the money is.

Remember, how do advertisers get you to buy toothpaste and cookies and soap?  Temptation..  And what is it that people of faith fight because it goes against religious teaching?  Yes.. Temptation..

See the conflict?

It's really no different than how media and advertisers discriminate with age.  Which group of people are treated by advertisers and Hollywood with the greatest insignificance and irrelevance?
Yes..the elderly... and why?  Because statistics show that once people reach their late 50's, they reached the peak of what they're going to spend.  Instead, this is a time of contraction...

Generally speaking, the kids have left the house so no need for a 4bedroom, 3 bath home...  No need for the extra furnishings, the family SUV.. etc.. If one has a business, they're in the process of selling it to another or just closing up shop.. etc...

But because people by this age are pretty set in their ways and shopping preferences, it takes more than scantily clad bikini girls and cool, hip slogans to get someone 60+ years old to try a new soda or automobile brand..  It takes the one thing businesses don't want to do..

Lowering of the price.

So the elderly are ignored like Christians and Jews and Muslims and Hindus who actually practice their faith and have contentment inside from it..

So Google knows those offended by their lack of acknowledgment over Easter will make a mini-stink but there will be no sincere, effective boycott.. No sincere harm to Google's profit or its stock market share value..

As long as their shareholders are happy with no Easter acknowledgement, then there never will be one in the future

So the only real question left is this... Those who genuinely care and are sincerely upset-- how can you organize and galvanize so that maybe next year Google will do the right thing?

Only you out there can answer that..