Massachusetts Furniture Store Offers 10% Off If You're Vaccinated—60% Off If You're Not
The Funky Phoenix, a salvage art furniture store in Pittsfield, also offers 40% off to those who had to get a vaccine for work or school
A Pittsfield, Massachusetts salvaged art and furniture store is offering a 10% off discount to people who got Covid vaccines voluntarily—and 60% off for those who have refused the shot.
The Funky Phoenix is also offering 40% off for those who got vaccinated because they had no choice in the matter.
The sale runs through July 4, according to an announcement on the store’s Facebook page posted Thursday morning, “as a celebration of our independence.”
Funky Phoenix owner Gary Cardot told me in a text message Friday night that he thinks requiring people to get vaccines is wrong.
“Not a business, corporation, or any one person should be able to exploit the choice to get a vaccine, or any drug!!” Cardot said. “It's not only unethical, but immoral!! No one should be able to gain or profit from another person agreeing to have an injection or not.”
Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer told me in an email that as a private business, The Funky Phoenix is “certainly entitled to offer their customers a unique sale opportunity.”
“However, this certainly doesn’t align with public health guidance,” she added.
Exploitation or not, around 63% of American adults have received at least one dose of vaccine, according to the New York Times:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Friday about 169.7 million people have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, including about 137.5 million people who have been fully vaccinated by Johnson & Johnson’s single-dose vaccine or the two-dose series made by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna.
That’s put the country on track to hit President Joe Biden’s target of having 70% of adults in the country with at least one dose by July 4, but the vaccination rate varies by state. Vermont is currently the highest, with 71%, while Mississippi comes in lowest at 34%.
Massachusetts comes in fourth highest with 67%, though Pittsfield’s Berkshire County—the western, rural region at the edge of the commonwealth that abuts New York, Vermont, and Connecticut—only registers 47.6% of adults vaccinated. Still, that number is likely higher in reality because 11% of all Massachusetts vaccines are not listed by county and the Berkshires has one of the lowest risk levels in the commonwealth.
Cardot did not answer follow up questions on his views about vaccinations, but a review of his public Facebook page indicates he has anti-mask and anti-vaccine views.
I asked Cardot if he got the vaccine.
“Of course I'm vaccinated,” he replied.
Cardot did not respond to further questions about the store’s discount policy.
The Funky Phoenix has ended the sale and taken down the ad.
In other news
At my column for Business Insider today, I look at how the GOP is having trouble demonizing Joe Biden—and turning to empty culture war fights instead.
With the country on the path to economic recovery and a semblance of normalcy after over a year of restrictions from the coronavirus pandemic under President Joe Biden's leadership, the traditional right-wing in the country is grasping for anything they can use as a wedge issue to pry centrist white voters back to the fold.
And this latest kayfabe shows just how desperate the American conservative movement is right now. These battles are largely meaningless. They're in service of setting off empty, staged rivalries aimed at drumming up attention to culture war battles rather than policy.
This isn't the behavior of a party with ideas or a plan.
Have some music, and enjoy the weekend.
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