Hummer: Taking the high road … huh ?

Excerpted from Canadian Business: MY HUMMER, RIGHT OR WRONG, 10/13/2009

Hummer buyers don’t hate the planet-they just love their country more

Depending on where you are sitting – or more accurately what you are sitting in – the Hummer super-SUV is either

  • a shining symbol of American consumerism gone mad, or
  • a 21st-century emblem of American frontier heritage and individualism.

It’s easy to understand the first view.

The Hummer is a hulking, slab-sided truck built by the same company that makes the Humvee military vehicles; Hummers need a gallon of gas to rumble 10 miles.

The case for the latter, according to a study in the Journal of Consumer Research, is a little more complex.

Basically, Hummer owners are aware of the criticism aimed at the vehicle but drive them anyway-not despite the critics, but to spite them.

“For Hummer owners, it is possible to claim the moral high ground.”

Hummer attitudes go beyond defending the rights of other Americans to choose, to a form of patriotism.

“They think they are particularly American by consuming this vehicle.”

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