Bias Watch

Christian conservatives freak out over shampoo ad with a boy wearing a tutu

A scene from the Aveeno Kids' Shampoo ad Photo: Twitter screenshot

The anti-LGBTQ+ hate group One Million Moms is freaking out over what they call a “disgusting” children’s shampoo commercial because it features a young boy in a rainbow skirt and white jumpsuit pretending to be a “ballerina astronaut.”

In the 15-second ad for Aveeno Kids’ shampoo, a young boy shampoos his hair in a bubble bath while an animated raccoon flies around in a cape, boots, and gloves. In the ad’s final six seconds, the boy plays excitedly in his skirt and jumpsuit, and the raccoon exclaims, “A ballerina astronaut? Awesome!”

“Aveeno Kids is currently using a young boy in its commercial to help push the gay agenda,” OMM’s leader Monica Cole wrote in a recent email to her group’s followers. “Unfortunately, the initial victim of this disgusting commercial is the young boy cast in this ad, not to mention any child who views the commercial.”

“The sexualization and moral corruption of these children are examples of child exploitation at its worst,” Cole claimed. “No child should be introduced to the experience of mental disorders through a commercial.”

Cole claimed that the ad seeks to “confuse young viewers and child cast members” with “destructive” gender dysphoria. However, gender dysphoria isn’t caused by commercials. Though medical professionals are still learning about the condition, many believe it’s influenced by hormonal and genetic factors.

While it doesn’t occur to Cole that some children are transgender or gender fluid, she also seems not to realize that many young children enjoy playing dress-up and pretend. That is, a child can wear a skirt and an astronaut uniform just for fun without parents needing to freak out about their kid being a “victim” of “exploitation.”

On its website, OMM claimed to have over 12,000 signatures for an online petition promising to boycott Aveeno.

The petition says that signers are “extremely disappointed that Aveeno Kids is pushing the LGBTQ agenda on children with its commercial.”

“You are exploiting young viewers by normalizing the mental disorder of gender dysphoria, also known as gender identity disorder,” the petition states. “Even more shocking, you are using a child in your ad to promote this mental disorder.”

The website doesn’t explain how, even if the Aveeno ad depicted gender dysphoria, it could be spread to others via television.

OMM — an offshoot of the anti-LGBTQ+ American Family Association — only has 104,235 social media followers and a habit of throwing a fit anytime any company anywhere publicly acknowledges the existence of queer people.

Their past moral outrage has been directed at Parents magazine for featuring a same-sex couple, an anti-smoking ad that mentioned erectile dysfunctionHighlights magazine for acknowledging gay people, Scholastic books for featuring LGBTQ-inclusive children’s books, the Roseanne reboot for featuring a non-binary child, a Disney cartoon series for its brief scene of two men kissing, a Zales jewelry commercial for featuring a lesbian couple, the fairy tale drama series Once Upon a Time for showing a lesbian kiss, and an Indeed job search commercial for showing a male same-sex couple.

This film’s NC-17 rating shows we still see queer sex as unsuitable for mainstream consumption

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