A sign is seen outside a Starbucks Coffee shop in central London December 3, 2012.
(Photo: REUTERS/Andrew Winning)
Starbucks has started a new advertising campaign, #whatsyourname, in the United Kingdom in partnership with Mermaids, a nonprofit group that supports young trans-identifying people and their families, the coffee chain has announced.
Starbucks' #whatsyourname campaign "celebrates" the company’s signature practice of taking a customer’s name, writing it on a cup and calling it out, by extending it to "transgender and gender diverse people," the American coffee chain says in a statement.
It’s to celebrate “the significance it can have for some transgender and gender diverse people as they use their new name in public.” It’s “a symbol of our warm welcome. It is part of the Starbucks Experience and creates a moment of connection between our baristas and customers," the company adds.
As part of the campaign, the company released a commercial showing a trans-identifying teen looking uncomfortable every time her name "Jemma" is called. Only when a Starbucks barista calls "James," that's when the teen is seen smiling. The commercial was created in partnership with creative agency Iris and “was inspired by real life experiences of people who were transitioning. We discovered that they found Starbucks stores to be a safe space, where their new name was accepted, and they could be recognized as who they are.”
“We were moved to discover that individuals find our stores a safe space to try out their new names when transitioning.”
Starbucks is also selling “mermaid tail” cookies in its stores to financially support the transgender helpline run by Mermaids with the aim of raising at least £100,000 (roughly $130,000).
Mermaids has “seen over a 600% increase in demand for its helpline service in the past five years, and our support will help grow this service, allowing the charity to employ an additional helpline operator and extend its webchat service,” Starbucks says.
Mermaids has influenced education protocols and other public policies across the U.K. to enshrine transgenderism in culture. The group is headed by Susie Green, who when her son was 16 years old took him to Thailand to undergo a sex change operation.
The group has become highly influential in the U.K., so much so that even law enforcement has targeted its critics. As The Christian Post reported in 2018, feminist activist Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, also known as Posie Parker, was interrogated by police for tweeting her disapproval of Green's decision to take her son to Thailand for a sex change operation. She was specifically targeted for having tweeted the word “castration."
“As far as the transgender ideology stretches I believe it is one of complete submission. Those that even raise questions are silenced with threats and accusations of bigotry,” Keen-Minshull commented in an interview with the CP at the time.
“We all have the capacity to be offended and offensive. We have to decide whether we want to criminalize this offense,” she added, noting that “in a world of billions I would hope the liberty of free speech is one we would extend to all, not just those we agree with.”
By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor| Monday, February 10, 2020