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Tony Perkins lashes out at U.S. tourism ad for featuring gay couple

BRIAN TASHMAN | Right Wing Watch
Thursday, May 31, 2012

The ad promoting tourism to the U.S. seemed innocuous enough, but Family Research Council president Tony Perkins warns that the advertising campaign is being used to “highlight same-sex attractions.”

The Discover America ad highlights diversity in the US, including a song by Rosanne Cash and images of an interracial couple, two Muslim women in a city and people celebrating the Hindu festival Holi. But Perkins is peeved by its attempt “to celebrate homosexuality” by featuring a man with his arm around his partner on a bus for almost two seconds.

Perkins claimed that the ad depicts “a country of radical values and backwards priorities” for including “so much cultural baggage.” Listen:

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“In 236 years, America’s never had an international tourism ad. So when Congress passed the Travel Promotion Act, people thought it’d be a great chance to highlight American attractions. What they didn’t know is that it would highlight same-sex attractions. That’s right. The commercial invites people to America-not to see the Grand Canyon, but to celebrate homosexuality.

“In one scene, a gay man is sleeping on his partner’s shoulder in a trolley. The actors said they were specifically recruited to add a ‘homosexual presence’ to the commercial. According to Brand USA, the ads were supposed to ‘open up some minds as to what America really is’ — which, based on this commercial, is a country of radical values and backwards priorities. I suppose this is part of the President’s push to “rebrand” America. It’s just too bad he used a travel ad to feature so much cultural baggage.”

You can view the ad here; the gay couple is around the 1:15 mark:

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31 more reader comments:

  1. Same shit
    Different day

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:48pm
  2. Dinner was that good huh, hope he gets some humble pie next!

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:52pm
  3. Wow! radical? Hardly!

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:54pm
  4. Tell Perkins it’s time for him to have a reality check. I can recommend some excellent psychologists and psychiatrists for him! How in the would could anyone think a two second flash is the same as “highlighting” something. Seems more like simple inclusion to me! Family Research Council president?! Honey, pleeeeeze!

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:54pm
  5. tony perkins has no room to talk hes ignorant and refuses to see every side of it this ad shows the diversity of this wonderful country and how accepting alot of us can be which is something the rest of the country should take in to mind be more accepting and maybe more people will be accepting of them

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:55pm
  6. Aww…is little Tony angry?

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 10:57pm
  7. Why are people even still listening to Tony Perkins? That’s what I wanna know.

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:06pm
  8. This reminds me of the first time Bill Cosby appeared on the television show “I Spy.” People reacted in the same way back then about a black man being on the television. You would have thought the world was coming to an end. I guess within each generation, there will ALWAYS be a group of people who are hated out of sheer ignorance.

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:09pm
  9. Oh my god seriously 2 men on a bus is getting his knockers in a knot. Find something more important to worry about jerk off like gun crime rates in the US. That’s more scary to me visiting your county then 2 men cuddling on a friggen bus!

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:09pm
  10. * knickers

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:19pm
  11. It seems to me Tony Perkins really needs to get laid. Or smoke some weed or something. I don’t care what he just needs a serious chill pill.

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:40pm
  12. isn’t there worse stuff goin on in the world that tony could help with maybe homelessness or kids in our own country going hungry,,the welfare system,,any number of more important things than this bs cmon tony get with reality and help people instead of trying to harm them

    Posted on Thursday, May 31, 2012 at 11:56pm
  13. 2 seconds of a 2 minute, 23 second commercial is more than enough to provoke the hatred of the hateful. It’s more comfortable to hate, than to fear – change. Hate is only the secondary response to fear. Bigotry knows no tolerance.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 12:30am
  14. Is Tony Perkins competing for the title of “Number One Hatemonger in America?”

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 12:56am
  15. And religiously JESUS NEVR MENTIONED HOMOSEXUALITY. he was too busy keeping the breeders in line”..”

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 1:21am
  16. Get real! We’re here and we touch each other. Get used to it.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 4:14am
  17. I’d like to see more men cuddling on the bus.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 4:32am
  18. the real issue is that for some reason religious nut bags are given a forum to continue to say that a group of human beings does not deserve to live. If any other group (gay, black, women, latino, etc) of people got together and said things like, “All rich white men should be killed” “I want the government to kill all the members of congress who take bribes” “I want all white christian males to be murdered” these groups would be held up on charges and the people would be jailed. Look at what the government is doing to the memebers of the Occupy movements, just for sitting outside and ‘bothering” rich white christian straight men?

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 5:49am
  19. “a country of radical values and backwards priorities” If he want to see backwards priorities he need to just look in the mirror. The people with his bigoted way of thinking is a is a dieing bread.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 6:10am
  20. Maria, awesomely put! Wow!

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 6:30am
  21. It’s time our tourism include the fact that our country is both gay and straight.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 7:43am
  22. OMG!! Aren’t there much bigger issues to be worried about right now??

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 8:51am
  23. why? what’s ‘wrong’ with that? never mind, i don’t want to ‘know’

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 8:52am
  24. I agree with Ron F. Its time for people to realize that gay and straight be do treval. We work pay taxes have the same feeling.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 8:53am
  25. Tony, how does it feel to be headed for the dustbin of history?

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 8:53am
  26. I always think how funny it is that people who dont like gay people spend a lot of time worried about what we are doing…

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 8:54am
  27. What would happen if we started an anti-hetero movement? I wonder…

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 9:01am
  28. One word about this guy who is complaining. Fuktard.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 9:27am
  29. The problem is tony perkins believes religious freedom only applies to christians. When everyday christians are trying to walk over my religious freedom. And it seems very convenient that god always agrees with a bigots

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 10:01am
  30. Thank you for continuing to share news, info and attacks on our commercial with our Gay and LGBT Family and Friends! We knew it was going to be a groundbreaking commercial campaign from the start… but now, it’s beginning to take on Legendary status thanks to Perkins and his inane rantings. Let him rant about this. It just gives us more information for present and future print/TV interviews about our involvement in this historic campaign. More great talking points to be had! It’s a large stride forward to having a Gay presence in things in our country and the more he rants, the brighter the spotlight is on people of his ilk’s selfish bigotry and hatred. A couple of seconds in an International Tourism Commercial, the first of it’s kind in America’s history, and he’s going to bust a nut over two guys relaxing on a streetcar?!?!? Could be brothers, could be a father and son? Yes, it was always meant to be a Gay presence, but this shows just how badly Tony Perkins desperately wants and Needs a male companion he can trust. He’s pathetic and sad and the more he rants, the more he falls apart. He has chosen his path… let him fall while we rise above.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 2:27pm
  31. Thank you for continuing to share news, info and attacks on our commercial with our Gay and LGBT Family and Friends! We knew it was going to be a groundbreaking commercial campaign from the start… but now, it’s beginning to take on Legendary status thanks to Perkins and his inane rantings. Let him rant about this. It just gives us more information for present and future print/TV interviews about our involvement in this historic campaign. More great talking points to be had! It’s a large stride forward to having a Gay presence in things in our country and the more he rants, the brighter the spotlight is on people of his ilk’s selfish bigotry and hatred. A couple of seconds in an International Tourism Commercial, the first of it’s kind in America’s history, and he’s going to bust a nut over two guys relaxing on a streetcar?!?!? Could be brothers, could be a father and son? Yes, it was always meant to be a Gay presence, but this shows just how badly Tony Perkins desperately wants and Needs a male companion he can trust. He’s pathetic and sad and the more he rants, the more he falls apart. He has chosen his path… let him fall while we rise above.

    Posted on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 2:28pm