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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Equality Means Equal Treatment... Even in the Superbowl

Posted by Dan Savage on Tue, Feb 2, 2010 at 10:02 AM

In theory, equality means equal treatment, Jonathan, and in practice equality means that mindless, salacious, and moronic ads targeting specifically gay consumers shouldn't be treated any differently than mindless, salacious, and moronic ads targeting targeting straight consumers. I agree that the stupid ManCrunch ad shouldn't be "elevated to lunch counter status," and I haven't spilled many pixels on this, but CBS broadcast a blatantly homophobic ad during a past Superbowl that featured a more explicit man-on-man lip-lock. CBS's willingness to broadcast the 2007 Snickers ad makes CBS's rejection of the stupid 2010 ManCrunch ad galling.

Yes, it would be great if Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) bought an ad during the Superbowl, one that made the case for the repeal of DADT and equal treatment under the law. But SLDN didn't seek to buy ad time during the Superbowl. ManCrunch, for better or worse, did. And unless a "good taste" standard is applied equally to all Superbowl ads regardless of the target market, CBS's rejection of ManCrunch's ad is discriminatory in theory and in practice. And that's worth pointing out, worth spilling a few pixels over, and I think the folks who've written about the ManCrunch ad have kept it in perspective.

No one has proposed a sit-in at CBS's lunch counter, right?

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