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Kroger Stores Charged with Discrimination by Tennessee Gay Paper

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Kroger grocery stores have been charged with discrimination by the publisher of regional Tennessee gay and lesbian publication Out and About Newspaper after what its publisher claims is an arbitrary decision to pull the paper from stores.

KrogerPublisher Jerry Jones (above) says he was told of the decision on Monday by the DistribuTech, with whom the paper has a contract to be distributed in 34 Kroger stores in the middle Tennessee and Nashville area.

Said Jones: "Mr. Duhame informed me that he was enforcing the wishes and policy of Kroger and Harris Teeter stores. He also said the two corporations would not approve publications that are controversial, religious or political...in the decision to remove Out & About Newspapers, DistribuTech was following our own policy, and in your situation not solely the policy and wishes of the retailer. On behalf of management, I sincerely apologize for any confusion or frustration this situation may have caused the publication and its readers."

Jones notes that also appearing alongside Out and About in the stores is the Southern Voice, another regional gay publication based out of Atlanta. Kroger reportedly advertises in the Southern Voice as well.

Jones notes that although the magazine has no sexual or explicit content, gay publications are often stigmatized for that: "The local Kroger managers that I've talked to received no complaints. If Kroger were to review the paper, they would find it is a very clean and well-produced newspaper. The public perception of anything within the gay community is that it's sexual in nature. I think they are reacting to perception, which is not necessarily the reality."

Gay Paper Pulled From Grocery Stores [ap]
Kroger officially says ‘no’ to distributing GLBT newspaper [out and about]

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Comments

  1. I live in Tennessee a wrote the Kroger chain telling them how much money I spent there the last 2 years, (thousands) and that I won't be spending any more money there. If we don't stand up now for what's right, we'll be bull dozed over for ever.

    Posted by: Bobby | Jun 13, 2007 8:44:51 AM


  2. I live in Atlanta and regularly read the Southern Voice and shop at Kroger. I can't recall ever seeing the publication inside or outside the Kroger stores. I usually find them near a Starbucks or LA Fitness gym. I really don't know if I should boycott Kroger or not. I really love my discounts I get there with my Kroger Plus Card.

    Posted by: Matt | Jun 13, 2007 9:06:59 AM


  3. The South is a shitty rotten place for any minority to live. It's reputation as a hateful, intolerant region is well-deserved.

    Posted by: juliana | Jun 13, 2007 11:24:04 AM


  4. Really, what is there to like about the South? It's hot, the people are mostly pushy, domineering religious fundamentalists. It's supressive, oppressive, and the governments are all rich tyrants who could care less about anything but getting more money in their pockets. I remember my father drove me to Florida and I could actually feel my lungs tightening because of the rotten air. Georgia's air quality was worse and I actually said to myself "Those God damn Republicans" because I know the Republicans hate environmental protection because it means sacrifice for their wealthy country club base.
    The ginger ale in South Carolina is horrid. It burned my mouth.
    All the black people there are in service jobs, gas station attendants and waitresses, but most of the whites were rednecks and Nascar people.

    There is nothing gay-friendly about the South. There are few gay villages - Eureka Springs in Arkansas, maybe metro Atlanta, and patches in Asheville and Carrboro in NC and some of South Florida, like Key West. Why gays go to Florida when vacation when the laws are the most anti-gay in the country is beyond me... gay people hate boycotting things because they like all the services coming from anti-gay places.

    I would never ever want to live in the South and I'd imagine every single GLBT teen growing up there literally runs at the age of 18 to the North, much like slaves did.

    The New England states and California are the best places to be gay in America. Massachusetts has marriage, California has San Francisco and West Hollywood, two capitals of gay culture and political strength.

    There's also a part of Manhattan where I'm moving to in a year after college in my God-forsaken provincial Pennsylvania town is over... I want to move far away from here to Chelsea/Soho/East Village/West Village area. I'd love to live right above the park where they have the statues of gay couples in the park (Stonewall Memorial Park?). I walked through the village once and it was heaven - the most beautiful place on Earth!

    Posted by: juliana | Jun 13, 2007 11:34:44 AM


  5. Could somebody setup a MySpace page for Juliana? Girl really likes to share!

    Posted by: chrisb | Jun 13, 2007 11:54:51 AM


  6. Good lord Juliana is very passionate. I really see no difference in north and south and i have lived both places. Why is it that a lot of Northerns migrate to the south?

    Posted by: Matt | Jun 13, 2007 12:58:12 PM


  7. Some of the most vibrant gay scenes in the country are in the South. You can go to Podunk, anwhere, north or south, east or west and find bigots, or haters....no one area has a lock on them. You tend to take your personal prejudices wherever you go Juliana, and a lot of Northerners now live down south.Sweeping generalizations can be hateful and bigoted in their effects, you know?

    Posted by: Joshua | Jun 13, 2007 6:14:32 PM


  8. Kroger has no problem advertising in the Southern Voice in Atlanta. The Nashville stores are part of a different division, but the inconsistency is interesting. I wonder what their policy is in other markets. Kroger runs mediocre stores, in any case.

    As for being gay in the South. I was never so happy as when I left Atlanta. To say that the South has "vibrant" gay scenes is is to laugh. Maybe if you count Miami-Ft L or New Orleans 9which has always laughed at other southern "cities"). Atlanta is best known for its tweakers and generic bars. Otherise, a weak cultural scene, a joke for an art museum, etc. Even terminally bland Columbus, Ohio has more going for it as a place for gays.

    Posted by: rich | Jun 15, 2007 12:02:51 PM


  9. I guess thoses gay pride goers in San Diego who were bashed last years were... oh wait it was SOUTHERN California.

    Posted by: Ken | Jun 18, 2007 7:20:59 PM


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