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Bigotry is Job 1
December 6, 2005 6:50 AM   Subscribe

Ford folds to pressure from American Family Association; pulls ads from gay media The American Family Association is forthright about its efforts to take corporations "Head-On" who supposedly embrace the homosexual agenda; apparently in this instance it worked. Ford spokespeople are pitching a different story to the New York Times, claiming the ad withdraws were due to "cost cutting," but John Aravosis claims to have more sources who will confirm Ford's dealings with the AFA. One wonders how Ford could forget its founder's history of intolerance; not everyone is missing the connection.
posted by rkent (78 comments total)

 
The National Gay & Lesbian Task Force has issued a press release calling for an "urgent meeting" with Ford over the issue; no word yet on Ford's response.
posted by rkent at 6:52 AM on December 6, 2005


the homosexual agenda? like driving and capitalism? Heavens.
posted by jonmc at 6:53 AM on December 6, 2005


The members and supporters of the AFA need to be honest with themselves, get their ass-cherries burst and move on.
posted by substrate at 6:58 AM on December 6, 2005


I was going to say the same thing, jonmc... what a ridiculous concept that is.

A paraphrase of a comment I once saw, possibly here, possibly on some other forum: "We are the homosexual agenda. Prepare to be fabulous."
posted by Malor at 7:01 AM on December 6, 2005


I am fabulous

At times like this I am tempted to throw up my hands in defeat. Why can't people get it through their heads that being homosexual is like being left-handed in that it's inborn and just not that big a deal?
posted by orange swan at 7:07 AM on December 6, 2005


*yawn* Who actually buys Ford?
posted by NationalKato at 7:07 AM on December 6, 2005


*yawn* Who actually buys Ford?

Yeah, that could be a problem with any retributive boycott; who would notice?
posted by rkent at 7:10 AM on December 6, 2005



*yawn* Who actually buys Ford?


The sort of person who fears the "homosexual agenda."
posted by caddis at 7:11 AM on December 6, 2005


Who actually buys Ford?

"Buy American" is still a visible trend in the Red States and other redstatelike areas... And Ford did hitch its corporate-future wagon to the yahoo SUV market...
posted by Zurishaddai at 7:13 AM on December 6, 2005


Oh, also, Ford owns Volvo and Jaguar... there could be some damage to those brands. It's not just F150s.
posted by rkent at 7:16 AM on December 6, 2005


I wholeheartedly support the position of the AFA; but why stop there? I hate seeing black people in advertising. Just enjoying themselves, blatantly existing as if they have a right to that. Next thing they'll demand equal rights!
/sarcasm

In addition to orange swan's comment: why is it OK and acceptable to discriminate against people because they're gay and not because they're coloured, left-handed or nearsighted? Is there any logical reason that would justify such behaviour?
posted by PontifexPrimus at 7:25 AM on December 6, 2005


Is there any logical reason that would justify such behaviour?

Yes, if you believe that being gay is a reversible choice.
posted by rxrfrx at 7:28 AM on December 6, 2005


Pontifex, I saw it explained once this way: the Christian Big Book of Anwers says that homosexuality is a sin.

God wouldn't punish people just for existing. Having black hair isn't a sin, but homosexuality is. So if the Bible says it's a sin, then it must be a choice. Sin is always a choice. Therefore, homosexuals choose their sin, and could choose to be straight if they wished. Social pressure should be brought to bear on them until they stop sinning.

Needless to say, this is going to be a tough nut to crack. It's pretty much impermeable to outside logic.
posted by Malor at 7:33 AM on December 6, 2005


The American Family Association....

I swear one of these days I am going to start a group and it will have the words "Family" "American" and "Values" in the name. And the agenda will be education of citizen's rights, assistance for the poor, and tolerance for all.

So if I have the right the AFA has pressured Ford to pull its advertising in gay lifestyle magazines. So the gay, they are not allowed to drive now?
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:33 AM on December 6, 2005


If only we could blackmail persuade a rival manufacturer into pulling ads supporting the heterosexual agenda. All those images of white, middle class breeders in their SUVs make me sick.
posted by londonmark at 7:34 AM on December 6, 2005


As is every issue that I have ever seen brought up by Christian fundamentalists. But I'm biased. And writing a paper on religious fundamentalism as a reaction to secular globalisation.
posted by malusmoriendumest at 7:35 AM on December 6, 2005


Who's got a corporate address so I can fire off an indignant letter? Very efficient use of the internets.
posted by Miko at 7:43 AM on December 6, 2005


I anxiously await the day that some company-whether it be a manufacturer (Ford) or a broadcaster--has the balls to tell Donald Wildmon to go fuck himself and that he and the rest of his organization are a tired bunch of fuckapples.

Until Ford apologizes for and reverses this latest debacle, I will no longer buy Ford products (which is hardly any threat seeing as I drive a 12 year old Subaru).

And, as someone who worked for a long time in marketing, I think pissing off the income-laden Homosexual Americans (thanks, Earl) is a far riskier move than pissing off the Alabama faith-squad headed by Wildmon.
posted by beelzbubba at 7:46 AM on December 6, 2005


They're hopefully going to reverse, like Microsoft did. Americablog is all over this, and immediately GLBT groups got on board--as opposed to the Microsoft thing.

If i were any of the other big companies, i'd start paying attention to more than just the rightwing nuts. Ford especially should have been more aware of their history, and how an action like this resonates.

and look at this from them in 04: Ford Diversity Leadership Recognized--...in addition, for the second year the company was ranked on the list of the top 10 companies for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) employees, and for the third year for supplier diversity -- named to second place on the Top 10 Companies for Supplier Diversity and taking the 10th spot among the Top Companies for GLBT Employees.
"Our performance in the DiversityInc rankings reflects the deep commitment Ford has expressed over the years to diversity and work life issues," said Joe Laymon, Group Vice President, Corporate Human Resources.
"It is a commitment that includes involvement from the highest levels of senior management to the group efforts that are conducted by many of our employees," Laymon said. ...

posted by amberglow at 7:46 AM on December 6, 2005


Who's got a corporate address so I can fire off an indignant letter? Very efficient use of the internets.

Miko: AMERICAblog is all over it. Check the past week or so of posts.
posted by rkent at 7:49 AM on December 6, 2005


more from a NYT Diversity thing
posted by amberglow at 7:50 AM on December 6, 2005


Looks like I will continue to not purchase Ford products.

This is a tough one because there are so many American-made cars I li-- oh wait, no, this is actually really easy.
posted by wakko at 7:57 AM on December 6, 2005


And, as someone who worked for a long time in marketing, I think pissing off the income-laden Homosexual Americans...is a far riskier move than pissing off the Alabama faith-squad headed by Wildmon.

I agree, beelzbubba. But then again, do we really expect logic from these 'values' organizations?
posted by NationalKato at 7:57 AM on December 6, 2005


What the hell is wrong with this country that people get indignant about advertising demographics?

Attention, gay people: advertising is gross, soul-less and increasingly pervasive. Ford's refusal to subject you to it is GOOD. It's advertising. This is not Ford refusing to hire homosexuals, and it's certainly not Ford threatening to gas homosexuals with exhaust from their wasteful, tacky, huge pickup trucks.

Ford has said that they will not go out of their way to subject homosexuals to their ads. If you are gay, you should write to them and thank them for not thinking you dumb enough to buy one of their giant metal turds.

How the fuck did this country lose its soul to the point that no advertsing is a slight?
posted by Mayor Curley at 8:02 AM on December 6, 2005


The AFA and other hateful groups are working from things like the HRC Corporate Equality Index--The HRC Corporate Equality Index is a tool to measure how equitably companies are treating their gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees, consumers and investors.

and their BUYER’S GUIDE FOR LGBT-FRIENDLY COMPANIES

Ford has gotten 100 percent for a while now
posted by amberglow at 8:02 AM on December 6, 2005


What the hell is wrong with this country that people get indignant about advertising demographics?

It's not this incident in itself or its direct results that I mind so much, Mayor Curley. It's the pervasiveness of the anti-gay crowd that bothers me. It's another brick added to a wall that I want to see torn down.
posted by orange swan at 8:10 AM on December 6, 2005


Mayor: Spokesmen for the automakers made it clear that the companies' business needs stood in stark opposition to the social conservative agenda. Rod Gillum, chairman of the General Motors Foundation, said "The more inclusive we are as a company the better company we are."
posted by amberglow at 8:10 AM on December 6, 2005


google cache of boycottford.com, from the AFA
posted by amberglow at 8:13 AM on December 6, 2005


I drive a Mazda, and this makes me ashamed and sad.

Mayor Curley: "Ford has said that they will not go out of their way to subject homosexuals to their ads."

While I agree in principle that it's all lame, pervasive advertising...and getting rid of that noise can't be bad...but it strikes me that the concessions made by Ford are more than just pulling ads...it's funding for certain gay/lesbian and backing of "community activities." And while I realize that this funding and backing is, in essence, advertising...I bet some of that funding and advertising is...important and meaningful to some groups.
posted by tpl1212 at 8:18 AM on December 6, 2005


Er...crap...that last bit should read:

"I bet some of that funding and backing is...important and meaningful to some groups."
posted by tpl1212 at 8:19 AM on December 6, 2005



posted by VulcanMike at 8:21 AM on December 6, 2005


Does anyone else ever get the urge to crate a fake Family Values organization and go after a major business, say, General Electric, for advertising in gay media. When they get defensive/surprised/ask for clarification, point to Time and Sports Illustrated and get all indignant, claiming the two magazines have been going at it for a while.

Gay newsmagazine sex makes baby Jesus cry.
posted by allen.spaulding at 8:21 AM on December 6, 2005


I would suggest adding the Detroit Lions to the list, as they're owned by the Fords, but they suck so bad hardly anyone in Detroit supports them anyway.
posted by snarkywench at 8:27 AM on December 6, 2005


How the fuck did this country lose its soul to the point that no advertsing is a slight?

If homosexual publications received no advertising funding, they would be more likely to go under. So, it can be viewed as more than just a slight...
posted by Bort at 8:27 AM on December 6, 2005


Attention, gay people: advertising is gross, soul-less and increasingly pervasive. Ford's refusal to subject you to it is GOOD. It's advertising. This is not Ford refusing to hire homosexuals, and it's certainly not Ford threatening to gas homosexuals with exhaust from their wasteful, tacky, huge pickup trucks.

I agree with you that less advertising is good, but it's not just that. It's this too:


According to a list of demands on AFA’s website, the organization insisted Ford and all of its brands stop donating – whether with cash, vehicles or endorsements – to homosexual social activities.

This includes donations to "gay pride" parades and pride weekend celebrations; homosexual organizations such as the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Human Rights Campaign and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force; and ending all advertising on homosexual websites and other gay media outlets.

posted by arcticwoman at 8:29 AM on December 6, 2005


tpl1212 beat me to it.
posted by arcticwoman at 8:30 AM on December 6, 2005


Real gay men drive Saabs.
posted by Rothko at 8:31 AM on December 6, 2005


How the fuck did this country lose its soul to the point that no advertising is a slight?

It's not as simple as that. Ford decided to run ads in those publications. And then they stopped. Because the AFA told them to.

It's another feather in the AFA's cap. They probably feel entitled to walk in any corporate boardroom in America and expect to have their ideas taken seriously. This is not a good thing.
posted by Otis at 8:35 AM on December 6, 2005


Geez, does this mean I have to sell my 1986 Bronco? Driving it around town to haul things probably hurts Ford sales in a kind of anti-advertising, however.

Boycoting Ford is, as others say, largely an empty threat. The Explorer is apparently down 40% in sales from November last year, if NPR's Marketplace from last night is to be believed. And that's with a brand new design which should presumably increase sales.
posted by phearlez at 8:41 AM on December 6, 2005


According to a list of demands on AFA’s website, the organization insisted Ford and all of its brands stop donating – whether with cash, vehicles or endorsements – to homosexual social activities.

Damn. I have never had anyone donate cash, vehicles, or endorsements to any of my heterosexual social activities. Maybe teh gay does have advantages.

posted by beelzbubba at 8:43 AM on December 6, 2005


I am so indignant at this offense to the homosexual community, that I refuse to drive ANY car.

Oh yeah, that's right, I don't have a car. Because like all other jerks and lesbians, I use public transportation.

Am I really going to be the first person to add "Found On Road Dead" to this discussion? Wow. Though really, "metal turd" is also a great description of Ford.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:46 AM on December 6, 2005


Might be worth an email to Ford GLOBE, see what their response is.
posted by Rothko at 8:46 AM on December 6, 2005


Curley has a point. It's not like gay people have to look that hard if they want to look at car ads. So this amounts to a gesture. But it's a nasty gesture.
posted by jonmc at 8:46 AM on December 6, 2005


like all other jerks and lesbians, I use public transportation.

wait a minute, I use public transportation. Oh dear, I have teh gay, don't I. Lousy secular humanist NYCMTA.
posted by jonmc at 8:47 AM on December 6, 2005


its efforts to take corporations "Head-On"

Heh.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 9:16 AM on December 6, 2005


allen.spaulding: obligatory crying Baby Jesus reference (very NSFW).
posted by jeffburdges at 9:17 AM on December 6, 2005


Do these AFA boycotts even have any effect on a huge company like Ford? Has anyone done the math or do these companies just give in "just in case"?
posted by MikeMc at 10:02 AM on December 6, 2005


wait a minute, I use public transportation. Oh dear, I have teh gay, don't I. Lousy secular humanist NYCMTA.

I think the MTA is more about Platos Cave group grope it's all good as long as you get off bisexuality. There are rush hour train rides that I leave feeling like I just had half an hour session in one of those swing chairs with Burt Reynolds, Loni Anderson, a piss bum and chinatown. I need a Nat Sherman, a snifter of Remy and 3000 mgs of Cipro stat!


If Ford is aware that not being a company that endorses shitty, cowardly bigotry is good for them then they need to tell these people to fuck off and have a blatant homosexual in every ad they run, this will not save them in the end, but surely it is better to go down swinging.
posted by Divine_Wino at 10:15 AM on December 6, 2005


The best tactic against this sort of idiocy is to simply advertise the facts: the Ford family supported the Nazis in WWII.

A successful "Buy a Ford, Support a Nazi" meme would destroy the company.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:45 AM on December 6, 2005


I leave feeling like I just had half an hour session in one of those swing chairs with Burt Reynolds, Loni Anderson, a piss bum and chinatown.

that was you?

Sorry about the lack of a reacharound, but we were at my stop, y'know?
posted by jonmc at 10:51 AM on December 6, 2005


*yawn* Who actually buys Ford?

I do - I just bought a Ford Focus this past July, and I am neither right-wing nor Christian. My brother owns a huge honking F-150, and he's as gay as Christmas.

I'm disappointed, however, because the enjoyment I get from driving my car will now be overshadowed by their cowardly actions.
posted by likorish at 10:58 AM on December 6, 2005


Anyone who actually uses the term "homosexual agenda" pretty much needs to be shot in the head.
posted by wakko at 10:58 AM on December 6, 2005


Orgy foul, yo!
posted by Divine_Wino at 10:58 AM on December 6, 2005


Orgy foul, yo!

Which means what, I spend time in the "penalty box," or someone gets a "free throw?"
posted by jonmc at 11:01 AM on December 6, 2005


Can we just get back to the topic at hand, jon? Gay people need to know about what kind of cars they can buy!
posted by Divine_Wino at 11:16 AM on December 6, 2005


fff, but the Bushes got away with it...
posted by bardic at 11:20 AM on December 6, 2005


That's another advertising campaign entirely, bardic.

Also noteworthy is that the US Administration at the time bent over backwards to get ex-war-machine German scientists into the USA, regardless how horrific their war crimes. Melted Jews into soup in a chemical warfare experiment? No problem! Come on over to America, become a part of our technology development programs!

It's all more than a little ill-inducing, and it really is easiest to not think about it.
posted by five fresh fish at 12:49 PM on December 6, 2005


Ford exec who brokered secret deal with gay-haters caught leading the charge for Bush's extreme right Supreme Court nominees out of his Ford office
posted by Otis at 12:55 PM on December 6, 2005


Have You Driven a Ford...Fabulously?
posted by fandango_matt at 1:44 PM on December 6, 2005


LOL. From Otis' thread:
FROM THE DESK OF
TOP CEO & EXECUTIVE DAVID LEITCH
MORALS PROTECTOR, GENERAL COUNSEL AND VICE PRESIDENT FORD MOTOR CO.
ABIDJAN, COTE D'IVOIRE.

Dear Friend,

This mail is intended for the receipent only. Please contact the undersigned, if you are not the intended receipent or you received it in error.

Firstly, not to cause you embarrassment, I am Chief Executive Official, David Leitch, a Solicitor at law and the personal attorney to late Henry Ford a National of America, who used to be a private businessman, inventor and famous anti-Semite. My client, the late Henry Ford's grandson's wife's stepsister can also be referred to as my client. On the 21st of April 2001, she with their three children were involved in an auto crash, all occupants of the vehicle unfortunately lost their lives.

Since then, I have made several enquiries with all countries embassies to locate any of my clients extended relatives , this has also proved unsuccessful. After these several unsuccessful attempts, I decided to contact you with this business partnership proposal. I have contacted you to assist in repatriating a huge amount of money left behind by my client before they get confiscated or declared unserviceable by the BANK/INSTITUTION where these huge deposit was lodged. Also large quantities of stocks in FORD MOTOR CO. that indeed will plummet shortly. Because I am tied up trying to locate the recipient of vast sums of money from Henry Ford's grandson's wife's stepsister I cannot act as the exclusive Morals Agent for FORD MOTOR CO. and defend it's sterling reputation against unfounded charges made on the internets. This will only hasten the devaluation of all FORD MOTOR CO. stock.

The deceased had a deposit valued presently $21million U S Dollars and the BANK has issued me a notice to provide his next of kin or Beneficiary by Will otherwise have the account confiscated within the next thirty official working days.Since I have been unsuccessful in locating the relatives for over 2 years now, I seek your consent to present you as the next of kin / Will Beneficiary to the deceased so that the proceeds of this account valued at $21Million US dollars can be paid to you. I would also like to offer you a huge portfolio of stocks in FORD MOTOR CO. at an inside price before the deviants and anti-family internet criminals reduce the (now high) value of the stocks to the status of penny stocks. The portfolio also comes with a decal of the office of the President of the United States, my former employer and advisor. This portfolio makes a handsom gift reguardless of the worth of the the contents! It has a cosmetic mirror on the inside with a pocket that holds 2 pens. It comes with a strap for easy portage and sells in fine stores for over $39 (US).

Beside the portfolio the bank account funds will be disbursed or shared in these percentages, 60% to me and 40% to yo u. I have all necessary legal documents that can be used to back up any claim we may make. All I require is your honest Co-operation, Confidentiality and Trust to enable us see this transaction through.

I guarantee you that this will be executed under a legitimate arrangement that will protect from any breach of the law.

I am presently in Cote d'Ivoire, provide me the following:

1. Full Name 2. Your Telephone Number and Fax Number 3. Your Contact Address. Your urgent response will be highly anticipated and appreciated.

Best regards, Chief Executive Official, David Leitch.
posted by five fresh fish at 2:06 PM on December 6, 2005


Have You Driven a Ford...Fabulously?
posted by fandango_matt

That was funny
I was just happy to read without posting. Thanks a lot fandango_matt.
posted by Smedleyman at 5:16 PM on December 6, 2005


five fresh fish, that is AWESOME!
posted by Mayor Curley at 7:18 PM on December 6, 2005


When I first saw the title, I thought it read "Buggery is Job 1".

Aside from a few hits on google that look specious, I think that theAmerican Family Values Association is still unregistered. Anybody wanna join up with me and do some astro-turfing for Jesus?
posted by klangklangston at 7:24 PM on December 6, 2005


Count me in, klang.
posted by fandango_matt at 7:38 PM on December 6, 2005


fff, have you ever seen a 419 email? Your spelling and grammar are...out of character.

Aside: the top 3 results for Google("nigerian") relate to the scam rather than the country. Having forgotten the precise numeric shorthand, I found this handy, though also a bit sad.
posted by ryanrs at 11:14 PM on December 6, 2005


Secret Life of Gravy and klangklangston: if you're willing to put in the effort to organize or develop such a site, I'd be willing to kick in some support. Say, domain and hosting setup fees as well as filing fees for a trademark*. But the project needs to have some substance to it. A trademark is a bit much for a quick parody.

* Single class. I hope an attorney is not necessary. They cost more than I'd be willing to contribute.
posted by ryanrs at 11:57 PM on December 6, 2005


Ryants: Yeah, I'd be willing to kick in for more than a quick parody. You guys wanna meet me in email?
posted by klangklangston at 6:55 AM on December 7, 2005


okay.
posted by ryanrs at 8:38 AM on December 7, 2005


Ok but only if you promise that I can add "Double Secret Cabal" to my c.v.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:54 AM on December 7, 2005


The 419 letter was from Otis' link, as stated in my post. Learn to read, folks.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:55 AM on December 7, 2005


Oops. That's what I get for responding to a 419 letter. Sorry fff.
posted by ryanrs at 11:29 AM on December 7, 2005


Someone needs to inform the AFA members that the robot arm that installs the seatbelts on Ford vehicles has a bit of a limp servo, if you get my drift. They might catch gay germs from buckling up, and probably shouldn't, just to be safe.
posted by Durhey at 12:41 PM on December 7, 2005


For days Ford has been saying this is just about a few ads. For days Ford has been saying they didn't agree to anything. And for days Ford has been saying Volvo will continue marketing to the gay community.

Not true.

We now find out that Ford has agreed to stop supporting gay events.

posted by amberglow at 4:15 PM on December 7, 2005


and Dan Savage wrote about it too: Driven to Hate: Let Ford Know You Think They're Pussies for Caving to the American Taliban
posted by amberglow at 9:27 PM on December 7, 2005


The 2006 Ford Klansman
posted by amberglow at 6:59 AM on December 9, 2005


we won
posted by amberglow at 2:48 PM on December 14, 2005


Cool.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:39 AM on December 15, 2005


Cue angry back-backlash:

AFA considering boycott of Ford Motor Company

(Tupelo, MS) - The American Family Association says that Ford Motor Company reneged on some agreements reached in discussions with the automobile giant, and the organization is considering its next move.

“We had an agreement with Ford, worked out in good faith. Unfortunately, some Ford Motor Company officials made the decision to violate the good faith agreement. We are now considering our response to the violation and expect to reach a decision very soon,” said Donald E. Wildmon, chairman of AFA.
posted by Otis at 12:30 PM on December 16, 2005


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