CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox have all decided not to show an advertisement that portrays a gay couple being banished from a church.
The commercial, for the United Church of Christ shows a gay couple, a single mother, a disabled man, and others being ejected from their pews by a giant supernatural hand pressing a big red button. Text on the screen reads, “God doesn’t reject people. Neither do we.”
The advertisement is for The United Church of Christ, who’s new slogan, voiced during the 30 second commercial is “No matter where you are on life’s journey, you’re welcome here.” It cost $1.5 million to make, and will be screened on some Spanish channels and on some smaller network channels.
This is the second time that the United Church have tried to run controversial adverts. One, from December 2004, depicts bouncers preventing gay couples, people from ethnic minorities and others from entering.
Church leader Ron Burford said that the decision not to air the ads showed that the companies had narrow minds. “They are saying, you entertain us on Will and Grace and Queer Eye For The Straight Guy, but when it comes to showing you as whole people with the church, that’s going too far,” he said.
CBS spokeswoman Shannon Jacobs refuted the claim that the decision was homophobic saying that the network had “a long-standing policy against airing commercials that deal with issues of public controversy.” Fox and ABC along with CBS have a policy barring religious advertising.