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No More Jim Crow. Here’s what the WineBiz can do to stop voter suppression


The image, above, is from an advertisement in the New York Times today, and was by placed of the signatories calling for corporate America to take a stand for equality and democracy. The effort was led by Kenneth Chenault, a former chief executive of American Express, and Kenneth Frazier, the chief executive of Merck. It is a response to a Georgia voter suppression law. This image of the ad was provided by my long-time friend and former book editor Tom Dupree. Since the ad was not available digitally, and because neither the text, nor the the signatories were listed in the NYT article (as good journalism would have required), NYC resident Tom shot a phone image of his dead-tree edition and emailed it to me. Many thanks, Tom!

Click here to view the full image of the Black Economic Alliance New York Times advertising page.

This article in the New York Times this morning got me to thinking what the wine industry can do to oppose voter suppression in Georgia and the numerous other states considering laws to make it harder for:


  • voters of color,
  • the elderly,
  • those with handicaps, workers with jobs that don’t allow time off,
  • people lacking transportation to visit a polling place,
  • Americans who tend to vote for candidates that are not part of the ruling politburo.

While the wine  industry is small compared with the people and giant corporations behond this, it has a prominence and image that exceed its actual revenues.

Initial thoughts

There are undoubtedly more, but these occurred to me first this morning:

  • Wineries and wine clubs can drop members who are elected or appointed officials who have approved laws and other voter suppression measures. Wineries and wine clubs should publish a list of those who have been sanctioned.
  • The above would apply also to private citizens who promote voter suppression.
  • Wineries can create a “No More Jim Crow” neck label for their wines. A percentage of the net sales price would to the NAACP or other non-partisan diversity organizations.
  • Wineries can create a “No More Jim Crow” bottlenecker to offer to retailers that could include a mail-in or online coupon.
  • Delivery services such as Drizly could refuse to take or deliver orders to suppression supporters.
  • Don’t buy supplies from companies in voter suppression states like Georgia or do business with them unless they publicly oppose voter suppression.

Please take action

Let me know your thoughts, and we will make sure that they will go to all 29,000+ subscribers to Wine Industry Insight’s daily News Fetch emails.

The illustration, above,” is from The Nation, Jan. 1, 1973. I wrote that article shortly after after I graduated from Cornell back when when I was (mistakenly!) sure the white supremacist disease had been banished. We seem to have a surge in that pandemic. Sadly, it looks like it’s time for more of this again.