NEW YORK — Rolling Stone magazine has sparked an uproar with its current issue, which features a cover story on Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Many are criticizing the publication for glamorizing a “terrorist” and the backlash is even evident at the retail level, as CVS/pharmacy has said it will not stock the issue of the magazine.
A statement posted on the pharmacy retailer’s Facebook page reads: “CVS/pharmacy has decided not to sell the current issue of Rolling Stone featuring a cover photo of the Boston Marathon bombing suspect. As a company with deep roots in New England and a strong presence in Boston, we believe this is the right decision out of respect for the victims of the attack and their loved ones.”
The boycott by CVS/pharmacy sparked a flurry of comments in support of the retailer’s decision. “Powerful message to rest of the retailers,” one person wrote. “My respect for your company has just gone up a notch or five,” another Facebook fan wrote. “Great call. Proud of that. More stores should take a stand. He’s not a ‘star,’” another comment read.
CVS/pharmacy has been a strong supporter of the bombing victims and their families from the start. In the days following the April 15 tragedy, the Woonsocket, R.I.-based retailer swiftly rose to the occasion, expressing its sadness over the tragic events and announcing that it would come together with the Boston business community to support The One Fund Boston. The One Fund was established by Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino to raise money for victims and families who have been affected by the Boston Marathon tragedy.
"We have stores only blocks away from the Boston Marathon finish line, so we know how strongly this tragedy has affected our local customers and employees and that there is a strong desire to help," stated Mark Cosby, president of CVS/pharmacy, in the days following the bombing. "We wanted to make it easy for our customers to support One Fund Boston by bringing an in-store donation campaign directly to the Boston community."
The month-long, in-store fundraising campaign at CVS/pharmacy locations throughout the Boston area raised more than $650,000 in donations from customers.
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